Paula Stoner Dickey
Miller's Sawmill Road, Sharpsburg, Washington County
The Wilson-Miller Farm house is a two-story, two-part, eight-bay log building resting on fieldstone foundations which become nearly a full story in height at the north elevation. Facing south, the building is divided nearly in half by a vertical seam in the foundations and an interior log wall marking the jointure of the two sections of the house. The westernmost, and presumably older, part is sheathed with siding with a heavy bead at the bottom edge. The other section displays German siding. A recessed double porch included under the main roof span extends along the south elevation of the east section of the building. Many of the windows contain 2/2 pane sash which appear to be replacements. Beneath the double porch, windows retain 9/6 pane sash. The north foundation wall retains its 6/6 sash windows. Most windows at the two main stories are flanked with pairs of shutters with movable louvers. The original front entrance appears to be located in the first bay from the west end of the south elevation. Here a 6-pane door is hung beneath a 4-light transom. Other doors are located at both levels of the double porch and in the north elevation at the west end, as well as cellar doors in the north and east walls. The roof is sheathed with standing seam tin and extends beyond the end walls. There are three brick chimneys, each painted red. Two are located inside end walls and the third extends from the interior of the west section near its center. Northeast of the house is a one-story stone springhouse with a wood shingle roof. A frame bank barn typical of the 19th century also stands on the property. Several hundred feet south of the buildings are the ruins of a small dwelling.
This farm complex, consisting of a large two-part, two-story log house, barn, and other outbuildings, would appear to date from both the 18th and 19th centuries. The buildings provide an example of regional vernacular architecture in a setting unchanged from that which Robert E. Lee and the Army of Northern Virginia saw on the retreat from the Battle of Antietam in 1862. The property is significant for its contribution to commerce and industry since the Miller family (owners in the late 19th and early 20th centuries), in addition to farming, operated a saw mill on the C&O Canal. The barn is said to have housed mules which pulled canal boats. Architecturally, the house displays several generations of construction. The remaining 18th century features in the west section are unusual in the area. The massive roof framing system is particularly worthy of note. Apparently the original house underwent substantial modernization, probably at the time the east wing was added. Possibly at that time the chimney in the west end wall was added. The house appears to have been renovated again in the late 19th or early 20th century.