2719, Roop Road, Taneytown, Carroll County
The Keefer-Brubaker Farm consists of a two-story six-bay by two-bay log and frame house which is partially encased in brick. Resting on a rubble stone foundation, the house faces southwest towards its farm buildings and the entrance drive. The north, east, and south, elevations have German siding, while the west elevation has German siding to the north, brick casing in the center, and novelty siding and German siding to the south. There are interior brick chimneys at the north gable end, between this first bay and its neighbor to the south, and between the two southernmost bays. There are entrance doors on the west facade in the first bay from the north, adjacent to a 6/6 sash window, in the third bay, although offset from its window above, in the next bay to the south, although the window above has been replaced by a two-pane horizontal-sliding window, and in the southernmost bay. The southern half of the southernmost bay, adjacent to the door, is covered by an enclosed partial porch. The remaining unenclosed porch roof spans the southernmost four bays on the west facade, and is supported by simple posts. The northernmost bay, containing the door and window, are also sheltered by a simple porch. All roofs are covered with standing seam metal. Part of the rear facade is recessed seven feet, with a two-story porch. The porch is accessed on both floors by a six-panel door in the east-of-center bay. Various windows have 2/2 or 6/6 sash. The house has a center-passage, single-pile plan, with two rooms on each side of the passage, being one room deep but two rooms wide. There is a short run of stairs on the north wall of the passage which ascends to the west. It has an open stringer with a broken field and a bead at the bottom edge. There are rectangular balusters and a thin, turned and tapered newel post. Below the stringer are horizontal beaded-edge boards and a door to a closet beneath the stairway. The north-center room has a very wide chairrail, and a closed-off fireplace in the north wall with a simple Greek architrave. To the east of this fireplace is a built-in cupboard with two one-panel doors and four shelves. This cupboard was apparently added later, as the chair rail and baseboard in the room run through it, with the chair rail painted dark olive green and the baseboard black where they are within the cupboard. West of the fireplace is a beaded-edge, vertical board door, which is now fixed shut. The west side of the fireplace itself contains a small built-in cabinet. The south-center room, which is the earliest portion of the house, constructed of logs, has a half-wainscot and a now-closed fireplace. Architectural evidence suggests that this room was raised to two stories at the same time the north-center room and the passage between the two were constructed, as the logs of the second floor continue across all three spaces. This likely occurred c. 1820-1850. The southernmost room has the same wainscot as the south-center, a stairway running to the north in the northwest corner, and the back of the aforementioned fireplace projects into this room. This chimney stack contains a built-in cupboard, indicating that the frame addition of this room was constructed at the same time the fireplace was added to the south-central room. Otherwise, this cupboard would have been on the exterior of the building. Portions of these sections of the house were at some point encased in brick. The far north end of the house, added in the late 19th or early 20th century, is divided into two rooms, the larger to the west. This contains a new exposed brick fireplace set east of center, with two terra cotta tiles in it that are probably re-used. The wood mantel has a simple shelf on two wide brackets. The frieze has applied foliate carving consistent with a date of c. 1890-1915. East of the fireplace is a closet with one door above another. There is one shelf in the bottom section and two shelves in the top. West of the fireplace is a vertical-board door leading to a cupboard under the stairs, and west of this is the entrance to the enclosed stair itself, which ascends to the east. In the small room to the east, the ghosts of shelves are evident along the west wall. Eight feet south of the house is a one-story frame summer kitchen, one bay by two bays, cove red in German siding. About 25 feet southeast of the house is a combination smokehouse/dry house, built of varying 5-, 8-, and 9-course common bond brick on a rubble stone foundation. Within is a frame for six drawers and several loose logs laid across the top of the interior, bearing hooks and exhibiting heavy smoke build-up. About 20 feet east of this outbuilding is a one-story, 1 x 1 bay frame springhouse. About 40 feet southwest of the house is a shop building that is one story tall and 1 x 1 bays, of frame construction with a parged rubble stone foundation. The barn is located about 180 feet west of the house and banked on the northwest, with a forebay that faces southeast. The dairy attached to the barn is one story high and one by two bays, constructed of concrete blocks. The hog pen is located about 20 feet south of the barn. It is a 1 1/2 story one by two bay frame structure with a rubble stone foundation. Also on the property are a tool shed, poultry house, and several more recent buildings.
The Keefer-Brubaker Farm is significant for its architecture, as an exceptionally complete and representative example of a family farm complex which spans the period from the late 18th century to the mid 20th century, and contains several building types and construction techniques that are now rare. The house exemplifies a regionally specific vernacular U-plan form, having achieved that configuration in a series of building campaigns. It retains a high degree of integrity from several different periods in its expansion. The property derives additional significance for its association with the development of agriculture in rural Carroll County during the period.