This historic residence, located on one of the many islands in Muscongus Bay, has been lovingly and painstakingly restored to its original charming character. Built in 1917 by John Aspinwall, a wealthy businessman from New York, the residence was an elegant seasonal retreat where Aspinwall and his family spent their summers hunting, fishing and entertaining. Aspinwall spared no expense in building the island home but sadly, it fell into a state of semi-disrepair when he died in 1949, and the house became a lodge for tourists.
It remained as a lodge or vacation camp rental until its third and current owners happened upon it in 1997. They fell in love with the house, and island, without stepping foot onto either and made an offer. The residence was in fair condition “the buildings were hard-used and 30 years overdue for a paint job” but the proud new owners remained undeterred. They worked hard for fifteen years, fully renovating the home with great respect for its original character and details.
Believed to be one of the largest in Maine, the enormous fireplace is made from stone local to the island. The original glass in every window has been carefully repaired, not replaced. The bird’s-eye maple floors have been similarly refinished. Massive oak trusses provide a framework for the twenty-foot ceiling in the great room. Furthermore, the furnishings and decorations, mostly local, adhere to what the owners call a mixture of “mainland rustic and nautical, with a garnish of folk art.”
Coastal Home Magazine traveled to the Aspinwall’s great island house and published this informative article accompanied by many lovely photographs. Coastal Home – Island Retreat.
Life of Bremen Long Island
Boat builders, fishermen, and dairy farmers first settled Bremen Long Island in the mid-1800s. The one-room schoolhouse—now used in the summer as a community gathering center—and old farmhouses and stone walls crisscrossing the island certainly testify to its rich past. The island stretches approximately 2.5 miles long and a mile wide and includes open fields, unspoiled woodlands, tidal coves, bold rocky shores, and old carriage trails. Today, Bremen Long Island is home to about 25 seasonal residences: a like-minded community who above all cherish the island’s natural beauty and seclusion. Despite its proximity to the mainland, and the associated ease of access, the island feels like travelling back in time.