what is really going on in caln township with lloyd farm?

Many thanks to Abandoned Steve Explorations for the use of his gorgeous photo of Lloyd Farm in Caln Township.

Abandoned Steve Explorations took the glorious photo I am opening this post with. I am positively obsessed with the cool structures he covers. He was nice enough to lend us the use of this photo it’s part of an upcoming project. You can find him on Facebook , his website, and YouTube.

Lloyd Farm is haunting me. Part of a Penn Land Grant, dating its origins to the 1600s.

(See this history by Edward C. Lendrat)

Then there is the 18th Century farmhouse with an equally historic 1901 addition.

What am I talking about? 1757 was when the farmhouse was originally built and 1910 when the Lloyd family commissioned Gilbert McIlvaine the Philadelphia architect to build a “modern” addition that paid homage and melded with the original farmhouse. Mr. McIlvaine maintained a home in Downingtown for many years and was also active in the Boy Scouts founding several troops I am told in Chester County.

Back to Lloyd Farm…except the people who have called it home or who had something to do with it are important to the very fabric of Lloyd Farm’s history.

Yesterday I learned surprising news when a copy of an old historic preservation application was unearthed from the early 1980s – possibly 1982. Yes – seriously – Lloyd Farm Application for Historic Designation: PA Historic Resource Form Circa 1982.

From this form we learned quite a few things including that Lloyd Farm around or before the Civil War was a freaking stop on the Underground Railroad!

It’s just crazy and you have to ask what in the heck is going on in Caln Township? How long have these commissioners known the history of Lloyd Farm and why didn’t that historic designation proceed? Why wasn’t it pursued for a national historical status?

Did I mention the demolition permit? There is one. And what is with the date mismatch in that letter thing?

I don’t live in Caln. I do know amusingly enough like Lower Merion Township , it’s a First Class Township. But who runs the Township? Because it surely doesn’t seem like the elected commissioners does it? I know in Lower Merion Township years ago because I was part of it when the residents rose up after having had enough over the threat of eminent domain for private gain in Ardmore that we flipped half of the board of commissioners in one election.

And Caln residents are upset about this.

Really upset.

I want to know why the developer wants to tear down the house don’t you? Is this going to be like the death of Addison Mizner’s La Ronda in Bryn Mawr, PA? A case where a magnificent home was torn down for salvage just because someone could?

Caln resident submitted photo.

Look at the historic comparables in Chester County that are actually getting saved and restored: West Whiteland Inn, Exton. Benjamin Jacobs House, Exton. Fox Chase Inn and Barn, Exton. Linden Hall, Malvern (even if I don’t like some of what is being done it’s being saved, finally.) Loch Aerie, Malvern. The Jenny Lind House, Yellow Springs Village.

Also to be considered? Several Toll Brothers projects including in Chester County where similar vintage farmhouses and/or barns have been or are being saved. Now it is no secret how I feel about Toll Brothers developments, but if even they can preserve historic structures on properties they are developing why couldn’t the developer for Lloyd Farm do that? Or why couldn’t they contemplate something like selling off the farmhouse with a small plot of land around it to someone who might want to preserve it and live in it or something like that?

Caln resident submitted photo.

I don’t have the answers and every day I have more and more questions. This is one of those situations I just don’t get it. I just don’t get what is going on here. I don’t understand why this property isn’t more valued for the centuries of history involved here?

Our history should not always belong to the wrecking ball.

That’s all I have got.

#SaveLloydFarm #ThisPlaceMatters

Caln resident submitted photo.

8 thoughts on “what is really going on in caln township with lloyd farm?

  1. GET YOUR LOCAL HISTORICAL COMMISSION INVOLVED, THERE ARE STATE AND FEDERAL GUIDE LINES, ALSO PHMC IN HARRISBURG.

  2. I live in Caln twp in a circa 1736 farmhouse and will be devastated if the beautiful and historic Lloyd Farmhouse is torn down. It breaks my heart. How do we stop it? Help!!!

  3. Since more information is coming forward in regards to this historic structure i strongly believe the Lloyd Farmhouse should be saved and restored

  4. Some developers’ short-sightedness and Township’s officers’ lethargy might be the death of this Historic , amazing architecturally significant home . Among the gems around the house are beautiful walls and fountain , sunken garden, formal backyard with terraced walls , beautiful outbuilding foundations of Pa . quartz stone with arch entrance way to barn , substantial sunken vegetable growing cold frames . The list goes on and on . This History needs to be preserved . Fred Sinton

  5. I grew up in Delaware County. I currently live on the West Coast north of San Francisco. The one thing I treasure about my roots is the history that surrounded me while growing up. It is a very sad day when we destroy that history in the name of progress & growth. I wish you much luck in getting this property saved from the wrecking ball. The Underground RR!!! Come on people!!!!

  6. The Developer could set up a 501C Historic NFP foundation to save the house for renovation and resale…then donate to it the full cost of renovating it ( big tax deduction)…recoup most of cost at resale and everyone wins!!! Gotta think creatively.

  7. did anyone else notice that the date received by the codes department is Dec 31, 2019 which hasn’t happened yet?

  8. Correct me if I’m wrong, but with a little (very little) digging, I see that Harry Miller is employed by Regal Builders. The same Harry Miller that is President at County Propane. Those of you who use propane should consider who you purchase your gas from. Also ask your current company if they, in fact purchase their gas from County Propane. The purchase and destruction of Lloyd farm is pure greed. Boycott County Propane, put a dent in their profit and send a message!

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