Connecticut August 13, 2016
You Can Buy This Beautiful Victorian Ghost Town In Connecticut
Not every ghost town is scary. There’s one in Middlesex County that is strikingly beautiful, despite having been abandoned. In fact, it was the backdrop for two movies, in addition to being featured in the music video for Billy Joel’s “The River of Dreams,” which was filmed just a few years before it was deserted. It’s been abandoned for twenty years now, but it’s still on the market!
The historic village of Johnsonville is located in East Haddam.
Comprised of 62 acres, the village began as a thriving mill community. The business was twine, with the hub at Neptune Mill, built by the Johnsons in 1832. The building stood for 140 years before being struck by lightning in 1972 and catching fire.
Meet Stanley Johnson Plumstead, the grandson of E. Emory Johnson, who helped establish Johnsonville.
Stanley served in World War I and was once a resident of the village. But his family couldn't hold on to the land forever. Raymond Schmitt, the owner of aerospace equipment manufacturer AGC Corporation, bought the property in the early 1960s. Said to be an eccentric man, he bought the property with unclear intentions.
Soon it became very clear that his intention was to convert the town into a tourist attraction.
Schmitt had a love for victorian era architecture, so he decided to convert the town into a victorian village. He purchased vintage buildings from other areas of the state and had them moved to Johnsonville, including a beautiful stable used to house his collection of antique horse-drawn carriages. The Gilead Chapel, a Carpenter Gothic style structure, was the site of many weddings in the 1980s.
Here's a view of the General Store, as seen from a window in the Gilbert Livery Stable.
It was built in 1845 in Peru, Massachusetts. But there are even more beautiful victorian and colonial style buildings to be seen on your visit here! The Emory Johnson homestead was built in 1846, and features a pillared porch. See the post office turned business office that overlooks the Johnsonville Millpond.
Does this covered bridge look familiar?
The Johnsonville Bicentennial Covered Bridge was featured in Freedom, a 2014 film featuring Cuba Gooding Jr. This bridge is just the beginning of the picturesque village. You also get river views and a manmade urban waterfall at the dam.
I can't believe it's still for sale!
When you get a view of the Johnsonville Millpond as gorgeous as this, how could you not by? Once listed at 3 million, the property sold for 1.9 million in 2014 before the financing fell through. The town is in great shape and could easily be restored. Maybe of we all pitch in we could share it!
Watch this video of Johnsonville Village and prepare to be transported to a different era! With a town as gorgeous as this, I can’t believe the people ever left!
Thought this ghost town was pretty cool? Check out these abandoned theme park in Connecticut for even more urban exploration!