The Hacker House

This is a home that I have passed many times over the years and I finally decided to stop and take a shot. I arrived before dusk and knocked on the door to ask if I could try a shot and while the lady who answered was not the owner, I knew who the owner was and we agreed he would probably not mind. I spent a good hour lighting this location and asked the woman if she would mind turning on some inside lights, and she gladly obliged. I really liked the picket fence and garden so it was a balancing act to get a little of the front and still highlight the garden, so this angle is what I finally settled on. After I was finished I went to thank her for her help and she asked what year I graduated? After telling her the year, she said we were in the same class and I finally recognized her and remembered her name which is a small miracle in itself. I hated school, was kind of a loner and could not wait to get out, so names do not always get recalled like I wish, especially almost 40 years later. Of course after you get out of school you wish you had applied yourself but I guess I was a late bloomer.

The following is an excerpt from a brochure for “The Hacker House c. 1814”:

The Hacker House existed in some form prior to the founding of the town of “New Ephrata” (Lincoln) in 1813 by John Reist. It could have been a one story log farm-house built in the late 1700’s.

In the year 1803, the road now called Route 322 was built from Downingtown to Harrisburg. We believe that influence of the city of Philadelphia manifested itself in about the year 1814 when the owner of the property may have enlarged the house and added the beautiful Federal style pedimented door case to the front entrance. It is rare to find a doorway of this style in northern Lancaster County. At the same time it is possible that an addition as large as the front of the present house was added to the east end and probably was used as a tavern or an addition to the existing house.

The house was extensively restored and upgraded. Starting on the exterior, all wood, vinyl, and aluminum siding were removed, except for the “L” shaped area in the back section. The structure was checked and improved where necessary. Insulation and sealers were used in the front portion of the house which is primarily a log structure. Insulation was installed between the studs of the rear section of the house which is a framed structure. Many years ago, the front windows and the front window of the west side were replaced with longer windows as was the style of that day. A second window on the west side was made into a door. All four openings were returned to their original style & size nine over six window sash. The front cornice was rebuilt to what was believed to be the original style which matches the saltbox house across the street. Overhangs which were added to houses in the early 1900s were removed and the original style trim installed. A good grade of cedar siding was purchased and primed on both sides before installation. A new rubber roof was installed on the flat add-on portion of the addition. The shutters were original to this house and had been stored in the barn for many years. We had them stripped, rebuilt, and rehung with old style hardware.

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