Burton House, Burtonsville, NY
Burton, Sr., a Connecticut Yankee was a Major in the Revolutionary Army
who received 1400 acres of land along the Schoharie Creek for his service.
He settled there in Mudges Hollow, an area named for one of the early
settlers in the area.
1785 Judah Burton Sr. erected the first saw mill and grist mill in this
community located in the southeast corner of the Town of Charleston
in Montgomery County. In 1790 he had the first bridge across the Schoharie
Creek erected. A toll bridge, it brought many people to the mills along
the creek fueled by the natural falls.
home still remains today near the site of the mills along the creek.
Mudges Hollow became Eaton Corners, then in 1837 the name was changed
to Burtonville (without the 's') in honor of Judah Burton Sr. In 1850
Judah Burton, Jr. built a sawmill, one of the many that flooding periodically
took out along with bridges and other factories that had developed there.
After a flood in 1870 which washed away the lumber, grist, and carding
mills, and other factories, Burtonsville (the s having worked its way
In 1834 Judah Burton
Jr. built the home pictured here. On his farm he grew grapes, hops,
and timber of black walnut, maple, and red oak. Remnants of all those
crops remain today. Most notably, the hops grow up a windmill tower
which remains from that time.
The home is a Federal
side hall colonial. It was known as a transition house because it was
built at a time when the use of fireplaces was going out of vogue and
were being replaced by wood stoves. Many false fireplaces with mantles
were built in the house with holes in the ceiling for the stovepipes.
The house was likely built in sections. The center part of the house
was originally a cabin, perhaps earlier than 1834. Then the front formal
part of the house, which looks more federal with more ornate window
detail, was attached.
It was probably
built after he became more prosperous and was used for his business
dealings. The front door opens into a large room with a parlor off of
it. The second floor where the bedrooms are was likely the family living
area with a large living room and smaller bedrooms off of that. The
farm passed to Judah Burton's daughter who married a Jameson, and it
remained in the Jameson family for many years.
Stories from older
residents now passed on tell of rolling up the rugs, opening the pocket
doors and dancing in the early 1900's. One person lost his ruby and
gold ring during a husking bee in the 1920's. The home eventually ending
up being owned by the Reids from 1940-1970. Reid, an inventor and engineer
for GE, was involved in early radio as well as repairing gunsights for
heavy bombers in WWII. He used it as a summer home, living in Oklahoma
the rest of the year.
The Kaufmans were
the next owners, Kaufman being a record producer from Woodstock involved
in record production in the 1960's. He bought it in the early 1970's
and lived there until 1989 when John McKeeby and Ellen McHale purchased
it. They converted the attached carriage shed to living space and, through
research, have made other improvements that are historically accurate.