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The house is ours

We now own The DeJoux House on Springtown Road. The previous owner, Dr June Finer, was amazing. She left the house wonderfully clean and left a lot of historic documentation including a map of New Paltz from 1790 which shows the house as one of only 35 houses in New Paltz. There was also a magazine article about how the previous owners put the new roof over the old shingle roof in order to protect the hand hewn beams and original roof . We also found one of the original wooden gutters at the back of the garden.

I also met the neighbor Richard (the Duck man who I met when we first looked at the house). He told us the house had a lot of history and that the road in front of the house was originally called the "Albany Post Road" which was the main road through the area to Albany. Apparently George Washington went daily along the road in front of the house when traveling from his headquarters in Newburgh to visit his armies. Who knows, he could have stopped in for coffee or scones. According to the man in the wine shop we have some really interesting neighbors as well as Richard. A writer next door and a gardener who has written books about gardening just across the road.

There were also new revelations today in the garden. We went down to the pond and explored the spring that feeds the pond. It has a little stone well head around it and the water flows down to the pond. Also, since we last visited some beavers have moved into the pond. They have eaten quite a bit of the willow trees and there is a newly formed little beaver dam at the base of the fallen weeping willow. Not sure they are welcome if they are going to chew down the trees.


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DeJoux House to be published

Our house has been watched over the years by a couple, Susan Daley and Steve Gross who create amazing books of old houses and Hudson Valley (each name below is a link to Amazon).  They knew the house and had been watching our progress. As we came close to finishing they reached out and asked if they could photograph the house for a book of cottages:

Catskill Country Style Book, Old Houses, Farm House Revival, Homes With A Past, Gardens of Hudson Valley, Time Wearing Out name but a few.

All of these books are beautifully produced. I can't wait to see our home in one of them later in 2015/16.

I won't reveal all of the amazing photographs that have been taken of our house, you'll have to buy the book to see them all....but here is a little taster.

The story of three Marias

For the first time in a long time I have had a few hours to spare to investigate the relationship between Maria Deyo, the story of the murders on Springtown Road in 1800, DeJoux House and the Deyo family -  especially now I have both the complete family tree and ownership of the house.   

My investigation started with the facts that we knew so far.

1) The document from the Library of congress that documents the murders and the names of the husband (Josiah) and the wife (Maria).   In this news DOCUMENT she is described as killing two children from a previous marriage. Also an infant daughter of 9 months old. (presumably the daughter of Josiah)

2)  The map of 1790 shows the only other Deyo owned house as being owned by C. Dojo

3)  The tax record of 1798  references a stone house, next door to David Deyo's house (Our house) that is "owned by"  Christian Deyo but was being occupied by "Josiah Deyo"  and is described as being "Between the main road and the mou…

Maria Deyo - a chilling tale

We arrived at the house this weekend to meet with the contractors who had poured concrete in the basement on Friday. When we arrived we found a family standing in front of the house taking pictures. Being the friendly types we are, we went over to chat.

They told us they were on a haunted house tour and were looking at the house because their daughter had been talking about the ghost at our house for the last couple of days. She had bought a book called "Spooky Hudson Valley" and in it was the story of Maria Deyo and a tragic tale of a mother killing all three children and then killing herself.

The family were wonderful and excited to be shown the house. They showed us the book and at the beginning of the story was a picture of our house. The book went on to say that Maria sent the men to the fields and then she slit her daughter's throat and the throat of her other two children...then killed herself. All this happened on September 13th 1801. There was ref…