Daniel C. Church
Puncheon Mill House
Puncheon Landing Road, Puncheon Landing, Somerset County
The Puncheon Mill house is a two-story, three-bay by two-bay gable-front frame dwelling supported on a raised common bond brick foundation. Built c. 1810-1820, the house is sheathed with beaded cypress weatherboards and covered with a medium-pitched wood shingle roof. The south elevation, overlooking the Pocomoke River, is partially covered by a gable-roofed enclosed porch, supported on a high brick foundation. Covered by the porch are two door openings and a 4/4 sash window. The door opening to the right was cut through at a later date and probably replaced a window. Lighting the second floor are three unevenly spaced 4/4 sash windows, and the attic is illuminated by a four-pane light. The gable ends are flush and trimmed with a plain bargeboard. The east and west sides of the house are largely alike with pairs of 4/4 and/or 2/2 sash windows lighting the first and second floors. The base of the roof is finished with a boxed cornice. The north gable end is dominated by a large common bond exterior brick chimney stack which has corbeled courses at each floor level. The top of the stack is finished with a two-course cap. Located to each side of the chimney stack are 4/4 sash windows. The north side is partially covered by a single-story hyphen that connects a taller single-story kitchen to the main block. Erected in the 1960s when the house was restored, the kitchen and hyphen are supported by a stretcher bond brick foundation, and each section is covered with beaded weatherboards. The interior survives with intact examples of Federal woodwork. The framing elements of the common rafter roof have a mixture of double-struck and mature cut nails. Around 1962-1963, the house was restored, and at the same time a kitchen wing was attached to the north side and an enclosed porch was built to the south.
Puncheon Mill house is the only example of antebellum industry-associated housing in Somerset County. The exterior sheathing of beaded weatherboards and the intact interiors of Federal woodwork provide a high degree of architectural integrity for the early-19th century structure. Built around 1810-1820, the two-story, three-room plan house was erected as part of an industrial saw and grist mill complex located along a branch of the Pocomoke River. Supported on a raised brick foundation, the two-story, three-bay by two-bay dwelling evidently housed the miller and his family, who resided here to manage the work accomplished on the site. Industrial associations for this Pocomoke River property can be traced as early as the mid 18th century, and references to various commercial and/or industrial activities for this site continued throughout the 19th century.