Johnsonville, an abandoned, small town in East Haddam, Connecticut, is on the market for an asking price of $1.9 million (Yes, the entire 62-acre town is asking less than $2 million). Founded in the 1800s, it includes semi-neglected Victorian homes, a general store, post office, restaurant, mill, and a covered bridge (h/t WTOP). The current owner is hotel company Meyer Jabara Hotels, who paid $2.5 million for the town in 2001. The property was previously listed in an online auction in 2014 and sold for $1.9 million, but the bidder was unable to seal the deal. It’s been a ghost town for nearly two decades.
The town of Johnsonville was once a tiny but thriving mill community until the mid-20th century, home to the Neptune Twine and Cord Mill, which made fishing binding rope.
In the 1960s, millionaire industrialist Raymond Schmitt purchased the land around the old mill and moved other Victorian-style buildings to the town, hoping to create a popular tourist attraction (his plan never really took off). After he died in 1988, the town fell into decay with no one to care for it.
While it currently sits abandoned, the town was featured in a music video for Billy Joel’s 1993 hit “The River of Dreams” as well as the 2014 horror movie “Deep in the Darkness” and the Cuba Gooding Jr. film “Freedom.”
Though there are rumors the town is haunted by ghosts of the mill and Schmitt himself, the Connecticut town has major development potential with lots of woods, old-timey architecture, and an overflowing pond. Past plans have included a senior living center, a large-scale spa, an equestrian center, a vineyard, and a set for a movie company.
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Images courtesy of William Raveis Luxury Properties
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