A visitor is coming to Mary Gallant’s North Brooklin, Maine, house next week, someone she met on her doorstep 20 years ago.
“I was standing on the table in the woodshed changing a light bulb,” Gallant said. “I started to get down to do something, and he said, ‘Let me put that light bulb in.’ ”
The man was an avid E.B. White fan and came to visit the famed author’s former home, which Gallant and her husband, Robert, have owned for more than 30 years.
“He’s bringing his boys, one of which is named Avery,” Gallant said. “He’s an E.B. White fan like I’ve never met.” Avery is the name of one of the characters in “Charlotte’s Web,” a novel White wrote while living in the home. The setting is based on a barn that still exists and in which Gallant spends a lot of time.
Gallant said people often drop by her home — some just take a photo of the barn from the road, while others actually knock on the door.
“I don’t mind showing them the barn,” she added.
Gallant and her husband, who are originally from South Carolina and have spent summers and falls on the 44-acre saltwater farm, are selling the property for $3,700,000.
They recently gave Yankee Magazine an exclusive tour of the home and the barn. The author of the article, editor Mel Allen, wrote:
“We walk from room to room in what is possibly the most impressive and well-kept barn I have ever seen. There is that rope swing, immortalized in ‘Charlotte’s Web’ as the one from which Fern and her brother launched themselves from the loft. Here’s where Wilbur’s trough would have been, Mary says, and ‘right here’—she points—’is the hole where I tell children Templeton the rat would scurry back and forth.’ ”
Gallant said the kitchen was really the only thing they changed throughout the years. The property, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, looks pretty much the same as it did when E.B. White and his wife, Katharine, owned it. The author died in 1985; his wife in 1977.
Yankee Magazine said the couple bought the farm in 1933. The main house was built in 1795.
According to listing agent Martha Dischinger, a broker at Downeast Properties, the home has five bedrooms and 4,000 to 5,000 square feet of living space. The living room offers a fireplace, and the dining room features a beamed ceiling. The sunroom overlooks the shore. The home comes with 2,000 feet of private water frontage.
Other structures on the property include the main barn, sheds, a wood room, former outhouses, a greenhouse, a guest house with a bedroom and a kitchenette, along with a small house near the water where White wrote. There are also three ponds and beautiful gardens Gallant has tended herself.
“I love trying to keep E.B. White’s spirit going,” Gallant said.
Read more about the home in Yankee Magazine here.
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