To the editor:
I first saw 2 Neptune St. in December 2018. This wonderful treasure of Newburyport had been sitting on the real estate market for over 6 months and no takers. No one from the Preservation Trust, no one from the Historical Commission or any antique lover in town ventured to purchase it.
It was not sold to me as a museum. It was not sold to me as a tourist attraction to be maintained for postcards. I purchased it as a private residence. This is what I have accomplished in just 2 years that will keep this house standing for another 200 years:
-- Replaced/resupported rotted beams in basement and kitchen;
-- Removed Vermiculite insulation (containing asbestos) – so I don’t perish from cancer;
-- Unboxed beams on both floors revealing beautiful original wood;
-- Repointed the foundation to keep the water out;
-- Removed three walls of a workroom and reutilized wood boards for floorboards in kitchen, entry and second floor.
A few clarifications for the record:
This house is not 1 of 10 saltboxes in the state -- that is inaccurate information. In this city alone there are at least eight saltboxes, in Ipswich there are more than 10. Beware of those spreading false information.
Regarding the last owners and livability – they rented the other side of the house for 18 years, that side has a normal height bathroom.
It is a very arrogant attitude to believe all new residents have oodles of money to buy whatever they want. Some of us need to live according to a budget and I purchased what I could afford.
The second floor bathroom was 5 by 6 feet and contained a leaking tub, toilet and vanity with an 18 by 30 inch standing area. Mark that out on your own floor and see if you could deal with it for 40 years? What I want is what you all have – a normal bathroom with space to move, washer and dryer, and linen closet. The next room as a closet where I can fully stand and hang clothes. I do not think my request to have a normal living space is excessive or outlandish.
I am currently having the dormer drawings revised to pull in the sides of the dormer from the edge, forgoing space to be a good neighbor.
Remember. this building was not sold to me as a museum, but as a private residence.