Live in History: Old Warfield Farm in Patuxent River State Park

02/09/2017
By Preservation Maryland

Does living in a historic house located within one of Maryland’s scenic State Parks, Natural Resource Management Areas or other protected state lands sound like a dream come true? Old Warfield Farm in Patuxent River State Park is now available through Maryland’s Resident Curatorship Program.

Old Warfield Farm in Woodbine, Howard County

The Warfield Farm is located outside of Woodbine in southern Howard County. The main house was constructed by Nicholas Ridgely Warfield around 1850 and includes three bedrooms, numerous fire places and airy porches with scenic views of the surrounding landscape. In addition to the house, the property includes the surrounding nine acres of land, a late 19th century bank barn, corncrib/wagon shed, a small pond, and two 20th century garages.

The Warfield Farm is part of Patuxent River State Park which runs along the upper 12 miles of the Patuxent River. The park is comprised of 6,700 acres of natural areas and farmlands. Recreational use is primarily hunting, fishing, hiking and horseback riding.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is looking for a partner to restore the house within a 5-7 year period. Families, non-profits, and commercial entities are welcome to apply as long as their vision for the property is in keeping with preservation standards and the mission of the Department of Natural Resources.

MARYLAND DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES RESIDENT CURATORSHIP PROGRAM

The Resident Curatorship Program was begun in 1982 in an effort to preserve state-owned historic resources. As the largest landholder in the state, Department of Natural Resources (DNR) owns many historically significant sites and structures. Some of these, like Fort Frederick in Washington County or Rock Run Mill in Harford County, are operated as museums while others are used for park operations and staff housing. Unfortunately, given the realities of tight budgets and an excess of buildings, not all of the historic structures in the department’s portfolio can be maintained.

This is where the Resident Curatorship Program comes in.

Rather than allow these historically significant properties to fall into ruin, the Resident Curatorship Program offers them to the general public for restoration. Curators are responsible for all costs associated with restoration and maintenance of the property but receive life tenancy free of rent in exchange for their efforts. Because the property remains in possession of the state, it is also exempt from state-levied property taxes.

Since its inception in 1982, the program has grown to include 48 properties throughout the state and has leveraged over $11.6 million dollars of private investment in state owned real estate. This successful program has been the model for similar efforts in other states such as Massachusetts and Delaware.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Contact Program Manager, Peter Morrill at peter.morril1@maryland.gov or 410-260-8457. Tours of the property are available by appointment only. Go to the Resident Curatorship Program homepage for information on this and other available properties.

Preservation Maryland

Preservation Maryland is Maryland’s first and largest organization dedicated to preserving the state’s historic buildings, neighborhoods, landscapes, and archaeological sites.

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