Clarendon Springs Hotel

The Clarendon Springs Hotel, ca. 1835. Notice the two rows of dormers!

A beautiful large wraparound porch.

Large front entrance – wider than most doors. Notice the wear on the granite step from the past almost 200 years.

Curved porch around the building.

Tall windows on the first story.

The Clarendon Springs Hotel (or Clarendon House) most recently operated as an antiques warehouse, but originally served travelers seeking rest and relaxation from the mineral springs beginning in 1835. Historic houses are adjacent to the hotel and the green. The hotel sits overlooking a sweeping lawn with a pond and fountain. These buildings collectively functioned as a resort village and comprise the Clarendon Springs Historic District.

When I visited the district, it was eerily quiet, but immaculately kept, so I figured that it could not have been abandoned. Instead, it seemed too perfect, like a strange time warp. I was shocked to look into the windows and see that it had been gutted to the studs. Clearly, this building was not currently in use. A house across the street wasn’t exactly in use either.

Seamons Store, across from the Clarendon House. You can almost see the padlock on the front door. This store is part of the district and for sale, as well.

Odd, I thought. Later, after searching for some additional information, I came across this website – Clarendon Springs, Heart of a Vermont Village. Four buildings in this historic district are for sale as a complex. Anyone want a historic district as an investment property? If you have $4.2 million, this is the place for you! The property is breathtaking.

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Disclaimer: I do not know the person selling this property; I just find it fascinating and beautiful.

Abandoned Vermont: Clarendon House

This beautiful 1820 Federal Style (Italianate additions added later) is not lived-in, but it is well cared for by its neighbors in Clarendon, VT.

1820 Federal Style House.

Interior end chimneys, symmetrical massing, fanlight and door lights, marble lintels and sills are characteristic for Federal architecture. The paired brackets and 2/2 windows are Italianate details. Often owners modernized their houses with in-vogue details, just as we would do today.

The porch details are also Italianate. Clearly, I should clean my camera: lens blur again.

The adjacent barn.

Behind the house and barn, down the farm road.

Another view from the farm road.

Looking up from the front door. There is something haunting about a worn curtain blowing through an old broken window. Note the Flemish brick bond, a sign of wealth (it was more labor intensive and skillful than other brick bonds).

The mercury glass doorknob with reflections.

The side porch.

Functioning shutters.

The side porch door. Italianate details here are the brackets and the two rounded glass panel door

Brick houses are always strikingly beautiful, especially in Vermont where most of our houses are clad in wood. The house is a mystery, as it almost looks lived-in. Thankfully, the neighbors seem to own the property and maintain it. All it needs is some love and probably some electrical, plumbing and heating upgrades. I think I’d call this house Empty or Lonely rather than Abandoned.

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p.s. I’ve been asked why I do not provide more specific information about location and history for the buildings in the Abandoned Vermont series. My answer? It is for privacy reasons, particularly for those buildings that are so vulnerable and sitting alone down a dirt road. For the majority of these buildings, I do not know the story of ownership or its current state.  Abandoned houses are fascinating, but I do not encourage breaking and entering. I may have found their history in the State Register, so I’ll provide the town and year of construction; but, as for more specific information: it’s not something I feel comfortable leaving for the entire internet to find. Not everyone who is looking for abandoned houses is a preservation friendly, house loving being. I hope you understand. 

Abandoned Vermont: Clarendon Church

Located in East Clarendon near the Kingsley Covered Bridge and Kingsley Grist Mill, this ca. 1890 Queen Anne church sits lonely on the side of the road. It’s not hidden in the woods or down a dirt road, which makes me wonder why it’s not being used. I cannot find any information about the owner or the fate of this building. Based on other images I could find, this church has been boarded up for at least six years (though I’d guess many more). If you have any information, please share.

East Clarendon Church. (Please excuse the blur from the lens.)

The applied woodwork on the steeple reminds me of a snowflake.

Weathered clapboard with barely any paint remaining.

No signs of use, but at least someone mows the lawn. If you look closely, you can see that the slate roof is still in good condition.

This church is a great candidate for adaptive reuse. Hopefully something will be done soon, as junction between the steeple and front facade reveal deterioration, likely from snow and rain accumulating.

This church is listed in the Vermont State Register of Historic Places.