- Status: Listed
- Price: $1,600,000
- Presented by: The Cape House, William Raveis Luxury Properties
- Contact: Katie Clancy – email@example.com
In 1927, Julia Shepley began a journal “to chronicle the progress and delays and obstacles and excitement of converting mother’s barn into the West Wind antique shop.” She went on to pen not only the rebuild of the barn, which was taken down from her family’s property on Scargo Lake and put back up on Corporation Beach in Dennis, but also the bold transformation of her life, from secretary to entrepreneur. In 1928, Julia finished the journal and the rebuild with the installation of a brick hearth fireplace – a “wedding present” from her mother to Julia and her partner Alice DeFord.
In 1976, Arnold and Maggie visited Arnold’s hometown of Dennis. “Before I even met his parents for the first time, Arnold said, ‘I want to take you to this house because one day it is going to be ours and I want to show you our bedroom’,” recalls Maggie through laughter. Indeed, per the will of Arnold’s Aunt Meg, who bought the house from Julia’s and Alice’s family, 185 Corporation would one day become Arnold’s and Maggie’s home. The bedroom or “nest” he showed her was, and remains to this day, a rustic loft under a vaulted ceiling of planks and beams. “He had a sense of humor,” says Maggie of her late husband. “By showing me the nest, he knew he was sweetening the pot!”
The pot was certainly sweetened because soon after, Arnold and Maggie were married at that house in front of its fireplace. Decades later, their children were also married at that house in front of its fireplace. And, over the years, 185 Corporation was where their family gathered to enjoy stories from Arnold’s library, dinners from Maggie’s garden, summers at its beach, and, of course, winters by its original brick fireplace – a timeless source of warmth, both literally and lovingly.
“I can’t live here anymore without Arnold,” explains Maggie who has listed 185 Corporation for sale. “He could never see any point in going anywhere. He just wanted to be here, and so, the children came to him here. This house was the glue.” That “glue” bound a creative family, who, as artists and musicians, grew particularly attached to the highly unique, historic home. “I like the one-off of living in a house that could not have been mass produced,” says Maggie. “And, I like living in an antique, because I suppose I like communing with the past.”
Maggie is, however, now looking to the future. As Julia rebuilt her barn and transformed her life with Alice in Dennis, Maggie will replant her garden and renew her life closer to family and friends in Falmouth. “I have just one condition to sell to a new family,” says Maggie. “That is, to love and appreciate that they are an outpost of a very different way of thinking about what a house and what a home should be.”
As edited by Mom, Maggie, Kristyn, Rosie, and Rose. It really took a village to do this story justice, so thank you.