Copake, NY, Columbia County
Open Tillable Acres
Wooded (or other) Acres
Condition & Current Use
This historic 18-acre homestead is comprised of: 1) 14-acres of farmland (tillable and pasture), and 2) a 2-acre residential compound with a Greek Revival Farmhouse, Icehouse cottage and outbuilding. The property was purchased in 2020 at which time it had been used by local tenant farmers to grow corn for feed, and for sheep pasture grazing. The 7-acre South Production field has been cultivated in 2021 and 2022 with organic cover crops (oats & peas, buckwheat) to build soil health. The separate 7-acre North Pasture was most recently used by a local farmer for pasture grazing his sheep. In 2021, Appleseed Permaculture prepared a site Master Plan. Recommended best fit farming uses were as follows: a) SOUTH PRODUCTION FIELD, market crops such as vegetables, cut flowers, u-pick flowers, strawberries, fruit trees. New potential infrastructure: wash/pack barn, greenhouses, frost-free irrigation hydrant. b) NORTH PASTURE, rotational small livestock pasture (sheep and/or poultry), rotational small livestock silvopasture, e.g. mulberry, chestnut, honey locust. New potential infrastructure: winter sheep barn, mobile poultry housing, retention pond.
Farm History & Past Use
The 18.25-acre Sweet Homestead is the intact domestic portion of a historic 240-acre family farm that was among the first deeded farms in the area. Built in ca.1845 by Fyler D. Sweet (1808-1889) and wife Dorothea Decker Sweet (1812-1875), the site includes a large c.1845 Greek Revival farmhouse, Icehouse Cottage, Secondary House, functionally-related outbuildings and related yards, and 14-acres of productive farmland.
The property is listed on the State and National Register of Historic Place, recognized as "a good example" of a rural Hudson Valley homestead" with an adjacent "rare collection of mid-19th century agricultural outbuildings that remain virtually unaltered" (four are under separate ownership). The original 19th century farmers produced diversified cash crops including indigenous crops, as well as sheep's wool, butter and honey products before transitioning to dairy farming in the 20th-century. The 7-acre Production Field likely provided a wide range of subsistence crops for the family. The property was used largely for tenant farming through most of the 20th century. In recent decades the farmland and historic buildings were functional but neglected. I am hoping to bring a farmer-partner onto the land to build soil and ecological health and to sustain active farming use.
I am seeking a new owner-steward for this historic site beginning in 2023 or 2024. New owner investment will be required to realize the property's full commercial, environmental and cultural potential.
Sale Price or Estimated Market Value
Sale Website Listing
Are you willing to mentor a new or beginning farmer?
Do you require a farmer who qualifies for agricultural assessment?
Livestock / Crops Description
A 7-acre South Production field (Soil: BIA) is fertile loamy soil ideal for a wide array of crops, flowers, herbs, etc. There is no perimeter fence currently and there is a dedicated vehicular gate access.
A 7-acre North Pasture (Soil: FaB + BIA) has a history of used by local farmers for sheep grazing. It would be appropriate for small animals such as chickens, goats and/or sheep. Land is secured by a perimeter fence with dedicated vehicular gate access.
Preferred Farming Method
The habitable buildings are serviced by well water.
Barns for Equipment/Storage
A semi-attached historic outbuilding to the Farmhouse - 15' x 36'
A historic outbuilding at the North Pasture.
There are currently three habitable residential buildings on the site (estimated square footage included):
- Sweet Farmhouse - a ca. 1845 Greek Revival farmhouse, 4-5 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, pantry/kitchen (3,500 s.f.)
- Secondary House/ aka ca. 1855 Trafford House, 2-3 Bedrooms, 1 bath, 1 kitchen, separate driveway with small garage/shed (1,100 s.f)
- Converted Icehouse Cottage, residential studio with small kitchen, full bath and sleeping area (500 s.f.)
Additional Property Information
The property borders on the east and north to the Taconic Shores Residential Community, a lakefront residential community built around nearby Robinson Pond. This property borders several residential properties.
I am looking for a farmer that promotes soil and ecological health.
Is the Property Conserved
Current Land Zoning
Is the property located in a NY Agricultural District?
Can the public be on the property as a part of the farm business?
Additional Information About This Property
The property is zoned Rural Residential - Agricultural with Special Permit Use for Agritourism.
There is potential for a diversified operation that includes small-scale farming with other compatible, revenue-generating uses. The Greek Revival farmhouse and compound could be suitable as main housing or to accommodate your farm-to-table dinners, and other farm-related workshops and other revenue-generating uses.
The property has an Agricultural Assessment that keeps property taxes low.