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Monday, October 3, 2011

BRIDGEHAMPTON, NY | Ocean View Farm, Windmill Hill

Just visited this farm, which has records going back
View of potato field and ocean. 
Exterior of upper floor of barn
to 1679. Its large barn was recently the location of two events sponsored by the Peconic Land Trust and the Bridgehampton Historical Society.

The farm dates back to 1679. The first building on the site was a "spider leg" windmill. The original "Hook Mill" in East Hampton was also called a spider leg mill.

Raymond Wesnofske and guest and side of barn. In the
distance, the Channing Daughters Winery.
The mill, which does not survive, was built by John Wick, and is the reason for the area being called "Windmill Hill". When the Halseys owned the property in 1818-1939, they renamed it "Ocean View" but the older name still sticks, as it so often does.

John Wick and sons owned the property from 1696 to 1741. He  ran the Wick's Tavern and inn in Bridgehampton near where the Starbucks is now located.
Interior of upper floor of barn.

He was viewed by the locals as a kind of Procrustes reincarnated, with lurid rumors abounding that travelers went into his inn but never came out. However, the historical record does not support the accusations.

Interior of lower floor of barn, where cows were milked.
The extraordinarily well preserved barn on the farm was originally used to support a dairy. The cows were on the basement floor, with its own entrance, and upstairs the hay and other food (ground-up corn husks, for example) was stored in lofts and a silo.

When the farm was converted from dairy to potato cultivation, the silo was removed and the barn is now used for farm equipment and other storage.

Thanks to Raymond and Lynn Wesnofske for permitting a tour of the historic property and to his brother Edward R. (Ed) Wesnofske for the historical background and a 12-page history. I have recommended to Ed that his 12-page history should be turned into a book on the Windmill Hill area. All photos are by me on my iPhone.