SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Homes of the Week

June 6, 2014

Riverfront home comes complete with captivating past

Those who are native to Cape Ann or even those well-versed in its history, would certainly recall an earlier time when Gloucester was as renowned for its industrial mills as it was for its fishing. Though the industry has all but disappeared, cherished fragments such as the old Hodgkins Mill have remained. A mere shadow of its original self, today it is a masterfully restored riverfront residence complete with Chapter 91 dock. Listed for $1,495,000 by Martha Anger of By the Sea Sotheby’s International Realty, this is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own a piece of Gloucester’s fascinating past.

“The structure, which was one of 15 mills that used to operate here, was built in 1833 for the purpose of grinding wood and grain. Eventually, as that business changed, the building was repurposed and has been everything from a youth hostel, restaurant and business retreat, to its current use as a single-family house,” says Anger. “While it has been a residential home now for over 40 years and thoughtfully renovated and updated over time, the current owners have taken it to a whole new level, all the while seamlessly maintaining the unique historical architecture.”

Extensive renovations and a total reconfiguration of the floor plan have resulted in gorgeous open spaces, all with infinite views of the Annisquam River, Wingaersheek Beach, Goose Cove and out to Ipswich Bay. A nod to its post and beam construction, the home boasts exposed beamed ceilings and wide-planked wood flooring throughout. A generous hallway with ceramic tiling, an eye-popping granite fireplace and a fabulous bar with sitting area leads the way to the living room, where sentimental relics such as original water mill gears and boating paraphernalia are suspended above.

The newly remodeled kitchen with separate dining area is a chef’s dream, with brick flooring, top-of-the-line appliances, granite counters and a stainless-steel farmer’s sink. Adjacent, the bright and comfortable family room affords one of the best seats in the house, with walls of windows, built-in settees, a two-sided fireplace and doors to an enormous deck overlooking the river.

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