You may not be the mayor of this upstate New York village, but for the first time in generations, you can be its owner.
In fact, The Post found out that a far from the norm — including a small private compound with its own restaurant and nine residences — hit the market for $4.2 million.
Located in the city of Oneonta, an hour and a half west of the state capital, the settlement spans over 270 acres.
In addition, the community consists of 46 bedrooms, 27.5 bathrooms, chicken coops, fenced tennis courts, expansive swimming pools, frog ponds and manicured Japanese gardens. Meanwhile, the restaurant lists that he has been serving customers for over 40 years.
Known as Emmons Farm, the estate is owned by Lee Peaks and two other branches of the family now based in Germany and Venezuela. The same family has owned most of the land since before his 1835 and is now looking for a new generation to take over all of it.
It was originally owned by Peaks’ great-grandmother.
“It was used strictly as her residence until 1964,” Peaks told the Post. My family lives abroad, so we only spend weekends together from time to time.
“This is such a beautiful and historic property that our family decided after several years of deliberation that it deserved a new life,” Peaks added.
The main house, named Woodchuck Knoll, has 11 bedrooms and is the only residence never rented. Instead, it’s used by expatriate families when visiting the mainland, Peaks added.
The original buildings date back to the mid-to-late 1800s. The grounds also include the Carriage House, his stately four-family unit with exposed beam ceilings. Granary building. Two-family house next door. Now he’s converted into a 3-bedroom conservatory. 2 bathroom cottage with vaulted ceilings and stone patio.
The former manure house is now a three-story, two-bedroom cottage known as the Cellar House, featuring loft bedrooms and vaulted ceilings. Then there is Feed House, a one bedroom, one bathroom cottage with a deck overlooking the large lot. Each residence has its own garage.
“When you sell a house, you want it to go to a good person. You put your life into this. Give it to someone who appreciates it.” said Peaks. “But when they buy it, it becomes theirs. Whether we want to incorporate the apartments as a business, whether they want to develop more because there is a lot of property there, we have the money to develop it and the skill set to do it. did not.”
As it stands, the residence is rented to locals on annual terms, including teachers who work in local schools.
“We’ve been occupied for 25 years,” Peakes says. “There was never a vacant seat.”
“We took the kids every summer to visit the grandmother on the farm,” added Lee Peaks’ wife, Jean Peaks. “It was a magical place. Pools, tennis courts. That’s when they got to know their German and Venezuelan relatives.”
The main house, Woodchuck Knoll, has a formal entrance, music room, sunken living room with stone fireplace, and dining room with wet bar. The kitchen has an original functioning 6 burner stove with 1930’s oven and an original “ice box” refrigerator. Since then, modern appliances have also been installed. This main house sits on his 3.5 acres of land surrounded by pine trees for privacy.
“Over the past 40 years, the family has reinvested all of the proceeds from the building rentals and adjacent commercial properties to maintain the quality and beauty of Emmons Farm,” Peaks said. “We hope that the new owners will take the same degree of interest in preserving the beauty of this historic building.”
The Peakes, who now spend time between Martha’s Vineyard and Florida, describe the home as “Gatsby-esque” in its early days.
“I’ve seen pictures of Japanese gardens with dancing peacocks. It was a different lifestyle,” said Jean. “It’s a beautiful, beautiful property.”
Steve Gold and Rich Vizzini in Corcoran Country Living list.