The small-town of Johnsonville in East Haddam, Connecticut has just sold for $1.85 million, after being abandoned for nearly 20 years. As Business Insider discovered, the international religious organization Iglesia Ni Cristo, known as Church of Christ, purchased the 62-acre property to turn it into a recreation center for its members. The current owner is hotel company Meyer Jabara Hotels, who paid $2.5 million for the town in 2001.
Founded in the 1800s, the entire town includes semi-neglected Victorian homes, a general store, post office, restaurant, mill and a covered bridge. Formerly home to the Neptune Twine and Cord Mill, which made fishing binding rope, Johnsonville once flourished.
Millionaire industrialist, Raymond Schmitt, purchased the land around the old mill in the 1960s, with a plan to create a popular tourist attraction (which was never actualized). After Schmitt died in 1988, the town decayed from neglect. Johnsonville was featured in a music video for Bill Joel’s 1993 hit “The River of Dreams,” as well as the 2014 horror movie “Deep in the Darkness” and Cuba Gooding Jr.’s film, “Freedom.”
The property was previously listed in an online auction in 2014 and sold for $1.9 million, but the bidder was unable to follow through with the deal. While there are rumors about the ghosts pervading Johnsonville, the Church of Christ members hope to create “permanent communities for people to reconnect with God.” The agent on the listing was Sherri Milkie for William Raveis Luxury Properties.
[Via Business Insider]
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Images courtesy of William Raveis Luxury Properties