Well, it was our first official day alone and we spent the majority of it in town. Hubby’s pay came through today so we had to go into town for groceries, and on Friday we had made an appointment with a realtor to see a couple of farmland properties at 10am today. Hubby also wanted to stop in at the court house and get a map of the property across the creek from us. There are two fields and a large pond up there that he is dying to trap on, but he wanted to make sure it was national forest and not someone’s property. In talking to the assessor to get the map he may have gotten someone in trouble. Evidently the man who lives across the creek bordering the national forest has a thirty acre dispute with them. I don’t know if they came in years ago and just claimed thirty of his acres (which, unfortunately, they can do since they are the government) or he bought the property without looking into things and thought he was buying thirty more acres than he got. But the fact remains this guy has evidently been taking down national forest signs because hubby told the assessor that there are very few signs marking the boundaries up there. The assessor found that very interesting. Hubby also said that he didn’t think the assessor was going to charge him for the print out until hubby asked him about it. We have gotten a lot of print outs in the past year from the court house because we were researching a piece of property we were very interested in. I jokingly told people that if we spent any more time there they were going to give us our own office. Evidently the assessor wasn’t going to charge him for the print out this time, but hubby knew it was their standard practice so asked about it. In talking to this realtor we found out that a lot of people had been talking about the property we had been researching and how shady things were surrounding it. It doesn’t seem to be on the market any more, and unless they found a complete idiot to buy the property they may have had to take it off the market because they were not at all being upfront about it. The owners were claiming it to be about 488 acres, but their map didn’t jive with the assessor’s map. We looked up deeds and found out that 71 acres belonged to another heir and their were lumping the two properties together. However, the maps still didn’t completely jive, thought they were a lot closer. So we did some more digging. Hubby asked the person selling this property about the discrepancies and she told hubby that the assessor’s office didn’t always get the boundaries right. Uh huh. I don’t buy that for a minute. Those maps are where the county gets it’s money through property taxes. If their map isn’t right its because someone is lying to them. We asked the seller about a survey and she told us that the owner wouldn’t do it because they feared it would lower the value. Red flag. Back to the court house we went for more digging. Finally someone discovered that the National Forestry had claimed quite a bit of that property around the edges — in fact, they had claimed the parts that had most interested us, the parts that could be used as pasture. We want to have an alpaca farm. The forestry probably owns close to 100 or more acres of that property that the seller is trying to claim in their asking price. Well, of course word is getting around at the court house about what is going on, because we are talking. The realtor selling this property is getting a bad reputation in town about being, ahem, a bit underhanded. One of the things that first caught our attention was that in the ad online it claimed the old farmhouse was a Sears mail order home. Hubby did research online, and when we went out to look at it there were no serial numbers in the rafters. In fact, the rafters were hand-hewn beams, so there was no way it was a Sears mail order home. Not to mention that the style of house was not included in any of the info hubby found on mail order homes. The style was the same as a good many other very old farmhouses in the county. So, once people were talking about it at the court house, it wouldn’t take long for it to get out into the town and then the surrounding areas. I have a feeling the property got too hot for them to handle. They wanted almost a million dollars for this property, I’m assuming because of it’s proximity to Snowshoe Resort. But on the road it was on (paved, but only one lane) and most of the property was on the side of Bald Knob and really not usable (and why the forestry department took pastures instead of FORESTED hillside, i will never know….) they were out of their ever-lovin’ minds.
I have to say it broke my heart to come to the conclusion we would never get that property. It was close to Cass. On a good day (good day meaning which engine happens to be running) I would have been able to listen to the steam engines blowing their whistles all day long. Once while we were looking the house over, it was snowing lightly where the house was, and you could see the Bald Knob overlook on the peak of the mountain which is the highest point the train goes to, and it was REALLY snowing up there. The mountain top was covered in snow. The sun was shining, and we heard the train whistle. Every time we went to the house, the wind was blowing. You could hear it rustling through all the trees. I had the perfect name picked out for it — Windy Hill. It was perfect because of the constant breeze, and it reminded me of the house in a story I read in grade school called The Ghost of Windy Hill. We also wanted to have it as a bed and breakfast, and I would have included a copy of that story in every room. But we gave up on that property last fall. Now hubby is looking at new properties, but my heart really isn’t in it. I can’t get my hopes up again. I don’t want to start hoping and dreaming about a piece of property until I know we have a chance of getting it.
Neither property we saw today was appealing to me. Neither had a house. I want an old farmhouse. I want some history. Pocahontas County is an old county with lots of history and heritage. In fact, my namesake was born and married in Pocahontas County. It was still the state of Virginia at that time, before the Civil War. I saw another farm for sale near Cass online today. We emailed the realtor and hopefully this week we will get to see it. It’s almost 200 acres and they are asking almost $900,000 for it, which I think is ridiculous. I don’t care if it is close to snowshoe, it’s a protected farm which means it can’t be developed, so it can’t expect developer pricing.
My dream is to have a fiber farm — alpacas, angora rabbits, angora goats, sheep. I want to learn to spin and then use my own yarn to crochet shawls, blankets and other goods. My brother has an old loom that belonged to our paternal grandmother in his basement. I want to learn to use it. I want a simpler life. Pocahontas County calls to me.
I have been getting some crocheting done, which is exciting. In fact, I’m working on a pattern of my own design. For over a year i’ve been looking for a perfect daisy to make something nice for my sister. She loves daisies. Well, I saw a tissue box cover my grandmother had made in the bathroom this weekend and I got some inspiration. I’m playing around and I think I’ve come up with a great design, but I need to figure out some filler design so I can turn this into a throw. Hopefully I will have it figured out this week 🙂