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Maryland's National Register Properties

Photo credit: Michael O. Bourne, 02/1996
Daniel Sheffer Farmstead
Inventory No.: F-4-35
Date Listed: 12/28/2001
Location: 8926 Mount Tabor Road, Middletown, Frederick County
Category: Building
Period/Date of Construction: c. 1840-1850
Description: The Daniel Sheffer farmstead is dominated by the main house, constructed c. 1840-1850. It is a large 2-story, L-shaped five-course common-bond brick building resting on a random-laid stone foundation. It has a gable roof sheathed with corrugated metal and features a corbeled brick cornice. A brick interior chimney is centered on each gable end. The main block is five bays wide and two bays deep. A two-story gable-roofed wing extends from the north end of the rear (west) elevation. An interior brick chimney is centered on the west gable end. A one-story shed-roofed porch supported by chamfered wood posts spans the front facade. Two horizontal boards form the porch railing. The main entrance is centered on the front (east) elevation, and contains a raised six-panel wood door with a three-light transom. The window openings feature 6/6 sash windows with gauged brick jack arches, wood sills, and louvered exterior wood shutters. A two-story wood porch with an integral roof occupies the south elevation of the rear wing. Chamfered porch posts and a wood balustrade with square wood balusters define the upper level of the porch. A single door is located on each floor. The first-floor door consists of a 3-panel door with two glass lights. The second-story door has six panels. Outbuildings include a stone springhouse, a large wood-frame barn, constructed c. 1900, resting on the stone foundation of an older barn, and several wood-frame outbuildings including a corncrib, a wagon shed, three frame wood sheds, two tractor sheds, and a chicken house. In the 1930s, a concrete block milk house and terra cotta silo were added to the complex. Significance: The Daniel Sheffer Farmstead is significant in the contexts of agriculture, military, and architecture. The farmstead illustrates important regional architectural patterns from the mid 19th through mid 20th centuries. Agriculture spurred the initial settlement of the county during the 18th century, and continued to serve as the county's primary economic base for the next two centuries. The farmstead's extant collection of agricultural and domestic buildings portray the layout of a mid-19th century farming operation, and its shift to the importance of livestock raising and dairying later in the century. In terms of its military significance, the farmstead is located on the eastern edge of the South Mountain Battlefield which figured in the Civil War in September 1862. On the day of the battle, the property served as a temporary hospital for wounded soldiers before they were transferred further behind the lines to Middletown. The Sheffer Farmstead also derives significance for its architectural character. The main house is an important, intact example of a mid-19th century vernacular farmhouse that combines elements of Greek Revival interior ornamentation. The barn and springhouse illustrate typical farm building construction during the mid to late 19th century.
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