The FarmHouse restaurant.

GOSSIP & RUMORS: Upstate New York village with restaurant, 9 homes asks $4.2M

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You won’t be the mayor of this upstate New York village — but now, and for the first time in generations, you can be its owner.

Indeed, a far-from-ordinary offering — encompassing a small, private compound with its own restaurant and nine residences spread across rolling green land — has hit the market for $4.2 million, The Post has learned.

Located in the city of Oneonta — an hour an a half west of the state capital — the assemblage spans more than 270 acres.

What’s more, the community comprises 46 bedrooms, 27.5 bathrooms, chicken houses, a fenced-in tennis court, an expansive pool, a frog pond and a manicured Japanese Garden. Meanwhile, its restaurant has been serving customers for more than 40 years, the listing notes.

Known as Emmons Farm, the estate has been owned by Lee Peakes and two other branches of the family who now reside in Germany and Venezuela. The same family has owned the greater share of lands since before 1835, the listing notes — and it’s now looking for a new generation to take it all on.

It first belonged to Peakes’s great-grandmother, who took it upon herself to expand an already historic estate.

The FarmHouse restaurant.
Laszlo Andacs
Inside the restaurant.
Inside the restaurant.
Laszlo Andacs
The restaurant has booth seating and a bar.
The restaurant has booth seating and a bar.
Laszlo Andacs

“Up until 1964, it was strictly used as a residential property for her,” Peakes told The Post. The years that followed saw subsequent generations, six in total, spend time at the property — but with family members living abroad these days, it’s only used for the occasional weekend together.

“As this is such a beautiful and historic property, our family decided, after several years of deliberation, that it deserved to have a new life,” Peakes added.

The main house, named Woodchuck Knoll, has 11 bedrooms and is the only residence that has never been rented out. It’s instead used by the families who live abroad when they come stateside to visit, Peakes added.

The first building there dates back to the mid-to-late 1800s. The grounds additionally include the Carriage House, a stately four-family unit complete with exposed beam ceilings; the Granary building; a duplex residence next door; a greenhouse, which has now been converted to a three-bedroom; and a two-bathroom cottage, complete with vaulted ceilings and a stone patio.

The former manure house is now a three-story, two-bedroom cottage known as Cellar House, which features a loft bedroom and vaulted ceilings. Then there’s the Feedhouse – a one-bedroom, one-bathroom cottage with a deck overlooking the expanse of land. Each residence has its own garage.

An original six-burner stove with an oven and warmer from 1930s.
An original six-burner stove with an oven and warmer from 1930s.

A formal living room with built-in bookshelves.
A formal living room with built-in bookshelves.

The sun room.
The sun room.

The same family has owned the property since the 1830s.
The same family has owned the property since the 1830s.

The Cellar House.
The Cellar House.
Laszlo Andacs
Two separate residences are shown on the property.
Two separate residences are shown on the property.
Laszlo Andacs
Multi-family residences.
Multi-family residences feature manicured gardens.
Laszlo Andacs

“When you sell a house, you want it to go to a good person because you put yourself into it. You put your own life into this thing. You want it to go to someone who appreciates it,” Peakes said. “But once they buy it, it’s theirs. My hope is that someone buys it and breathes life back into it, particularly my grandmother’s house. That’s the one sitting empty. Whether they want to incorporate the apartments as a business. Whether they want to develop more because there is a ton of property there, we just didn’t have the money to develop it, or the skill set to do any developments.”

As it all stands, the residences are leased out to locals on year-to-year terms — including teachers who work at the local schools.

“We’ve been occupied for 25 years,” said Peakes. “We’ve never had a vacancy.”

The main house leading out to the pool.
The main house leading out to the pool.
Laszlo Andacs
The properties all boast bucolic charm.
The properties all boast bucolic charm.
Laszlo Andacs
An aerial shot of the property.
An aerial shot of the property with tennis courts.
Laszlo Andacs
One of nine residences on the property.
One of nine residences on the property.
Laszlo Andacs

“We took our children every summer to visit grandmother at the farm.” Jan Peakes, Lee Peakes’ wife, added. “It was kind of a magical place. Swimming pool, tennis courts. That’s when they got to know their German and Venezuelan relatives as well.”

Woodchuck Knoll, the main house, features a formal entry, a music room, a sunken living room with a stone fireplace and a dining room with a wet bar. The kitchen still holds an original functioning six-burner stove with an oven from the 1930s, plus an original “Icebox” refrigerator. Modern appliances have also been installed in the years since. This main residence is situated on 3.5 acres of land surrounded by pine trees for privacy.

“For the past 40 years, the family has reinvested all the revenue from the rental of the buildings and the revenue generated by the adjacent commercial property in order to maintain the quality and beauty of … Emmons Farm,” Peakes said. “We would hope the new owner would have the same degree of interest in preserving the beauty of this historic property.”

The Peakes, who now spend time between Martha’s Vineyard and Florida, described the home as once being “Gatsby-ish” in the early days.

“I’ve seen pictures of the Japanese garden with peacocks scrolling. It was a different lifestyle,” Jan said. “It’s a beautiful, beautiful piece of property.”

Steve Gold and Rich Vizzini of Corcoran Country Living hold the listing.



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