ThorneBrook Farms

Cattle • Lamb • A Passion for Good Food

A Cumberland Farmhouse: More Discoveries

The days had turned cooler and leaves started dropping as we took a few trips out to the farm. We met the soil folks out there who informed us that the soil was some of the best in the Piedmont. This was absolutely fantastic news!

The Piedmont area of Virginia is a stretch that goes from north to south and is centrally located. It’s a section of Virginia that is known for ideal soil conditions for various farming operations.

Our soil study revealed ideal soil and the owner of the company made it a point to call Brooks personally to tell him. In his words, he said, “How ever [we] decide to use the property, the soil will support us well.”


Barn. We discovered this hidden gem in an overgrowth of brush, trees, and vines.

As we continued to walk around the property, both before putting in an offer and after, we found a few more discoveries. The first was an old barn that, like the house, was a little rough on the outside but a gem on the inside. Buried in a ton of brush, small trees, and vines, the barn is hidden not far from the house. It is chock full of opportunity for a chicken run, hog shoot, lambing area, and a large loft that’s clean as a whistle.

Yay, for finding good structures on the farm.

Several years ago, when we moved into our original ThorneBrook Farms farmhouse in Goochland County, it too had a barn in similar condition. With a lot of TLC, Brooks was able to bring life back to it. He did a stellar job because… well… he’s awesome and capable like that. Looks like we will be doing the same here.

Gladly so. Existing, usable structures on a farm property are wonderful and money in the bank.

Interior of the barn is in good shape including the loft.

Another set of finds included an old dog kennel, two campers, and an old Pontiac LeManns buried in a few inches of mud.

Established and well maintained trails and tree stands intertwine the woods for walking and hunting. We were able to salvage a hand drawn map the previous owners had made. It’s of the whole property and neighboring land plots. It included mapping of all of the trails, tree stands, and what were once various outbuildings on the property (which are now gone).

That map, which was nailed to a post out in the elements, had seen better days so I decided to get a copy and have it laminated. Most standard copy companies wouldn’t touch the project since the original was in such bad shape. It was too large for a flat bed scanner and needed a roller instead. But, I found one brave company that was able to scan it. The original will be preserved in a sleeve and stored away.

Finds like these, whether large or small, all contribute to the story. I imagine if walls could talk, or perhaps in this case if trees could talk, there’d be some amazing stories to tell. What soldiers walked through these woods? Was one wounded and found refuge in that old post office & hotel? Having all of the original windows, whose hands have open and closed them over time? Who has spent an afternoon sipping tea and taking in the sights on that front porch.

If walls, trees, and barns could talk. 


  1. Beautiful story telling Jil. I am enjoying them so.

  2. I am so happy for you and Brooks . And love to read your story. Keep up the good work .God bless.

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