A converted stone gristmill with water flowing beneath it has landed on the market in Mansfield, NJ, for $1,175,000. For a buyer with nothing but time, hours can be spent watching the water flow on by through a glass window in the living room floor.
The landmark Beattystown mill estate was built in 1750 and rescued from collapse in the 1980s. The structure was redesigned, reconstructed, and renovated by Yale-trained architectural designer, woodworker, and owner Charles Buckley.
After Buckley’s death, the property was sold. The most recent owner has also died, and the property is being sold through his estate.
The building hadn’t been a working mill since the 1920s, says listing agent Maryann Johnston of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Chester. Buckley “had this vision to make it into a spectacular 6,000-square-foot house that was all open,” she adds.
Now the soaring space features exposed hand-hewn beams, wide-plank wood flooring, thick plank steps, stone walls, and an entire wall of glass.
However, the most eye-popping feature is the window over the water. The millrace, which originally powered the grinding stone, still flows under what’s now the living room. Through arched windows in a seating area and a glass window under your feet, you can watch the river flow.
“When you walk in it’s just, like, ‘wow,’” Johnston says of the open architecture.
Now a light-filled home, it has four bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, two stone fireplaces, and a pub on the ground level. The eat-in kitchen features terra-cotta tile flooring, granite counters, and stainless-steel appliances. There’s also a formal dining room and sitting area with a fireplace.
The open staircase spans four floors. The second floor features a library with floor-to-ceiling bookshelves as well as some of the bedrooms. On the next level is an open atrium space, which is currently being used as a gallery space for the seller’s collection of artifacts.
The top level contains the master suite with an office or exercise room. The space opens to a balcony with river views.
The massive renovation—which Buckley completed with just one assistant—took six years. Decades of neglect had rendered the structure unsafe, and many of the main support beams had rotted. The mill was dark with only four small windows. Buckley decided to demolish the rear wall and replace it with glass. A series of small windows were also added for a view the river below.
The 3.6-acre property comes with 1,400 feet of Musconetcong River frontage and four investment homes, which can bring in as much as $40,000 in rental income a year.