Down by the Old Mill Stream for 265K

Leonard Schechter, a pioneer of the urban salvage movement since the 1970s in New York City, is now a dealer in early industrial-era relics, lighting, furnishings, fixtures, and folk art. His company, Found Objects of Industry, is based in an old mill in rural Berks County, PA, two hours due west of the Holland Tunnel.

Somewhere along the line, he became a “mill nut.”oley-1

There were more than 130 grain mills in Berks County in the 19th century; at one point,  Schechter owned three.  He sold one, and now he’s put a second on the market, a 45’x65′ stone structure with an 1828 datestone in Oley, PA, a township so laden with history it was named the first National Historic District.  Asking is $265K.getasset-3

On seven wooded acres with a mill stream (obviously), the building — “just up the road from a furnace that made cannonballs for the Revolutionary War” — was used to grind grain and later press apple cider.  It’s a beauty in rough shape. The absence of a roof over many years caused part of the interior to rot away; but there is also a fair amount of original flooring and champfered posts; the original mill workings are there, too. (It has had a roof on it for the past few years.)

getasset-2Schechter bought the mill in 2002. “It needed to be rescued from destruction, and I figured I would sell it to some crazy New Yorker with money. It’s a million dollar project.”

It could be an antiques showroom, an art studio, a residence. Essentially, says Schechter, “it’s a loft building in the country.”

Any takers?

For more info: Kathie Rosse,, 610 367 2058oley2

About cara

I blog (for fun) here at casaCARA, and write (for money) about architecture, interiors, gardens and travel for many national magazines and websites.
This entry was posted in HISTORIC PRESERVATION, PROPERTIES FOR SALE and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Down by the Old Mill Stream for 265K

  1. Melissa says:

    OOhhhhhh…What a great artists’ colony/residence this would make.

  2. kym says:

    This is the one we bought! Do you want me to send updates as it is renovated?

  3. cara says:

    Yes, by all means!!

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