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The Stoneton West property was originally a collection of rental cottages known as "Inotio Camp" and "Stahr's Cottages" which was run by a woman named Ethel Stahr, a person we came to know as "Mrs. Stahr" and "Aunt Ethel." We believe the Inotio Camp property may have actually been owned by a woman by the name of Nan Price, and Ethel Stahr leased the property from Ms. Price to run as a cottage rental business. Our uncle, Richard Burke Keephart (who we called "Uncle Dick"), purchased the Inotio Camp property in the 1980's and renamed the property "Stoneton West."
The Stoneton West property consisted of a small house on the south side of First Avenue called "The Wild Duck," the main house down by the water later (which had been called "The Big House" since Ethel Stahr had managed the property) and a number of small cottages. One of the cottages was named "H. Stahr" another "Dawn" another "Sea Gull", another "Holly Hock", another "Ship Ahoy" and another was named "Quack-Quack". The building that is now the workshop was originally the cottage named "Pal O' Mine". Another small cottage (originally known as "Idle Hour") later became known as "The Bottle House" and was where Uncle Dick kept his collections, but that's another story which we'll leave to be told on another page! Another structure on the Stoneton West property was named "The Doll House," a very small play house for the children. There may have been other cottages on the Stoneton West property but we cannot recall the names and we're working on trying to find out what they called.
Unfortunately, in the years which followed, a number of storms and hurricanes washed some of the cottages into the bay, or compromised some of the structures which had to be torn down as they had become unsafe. The sun-porch attached to the "The Big House" also had to be torn down due to a rotting structure. The outhouses had all been removed just before, or immediately after, Uncle Dick acquired the property.
Below we've listed what we presently know regarding the original Inotio Cap structure names and the present day Stoneton West structure names...
|Inotio Camp Name||Stoneton West Name|
|The Big House||The Big House|
|The Wild Duck||The Wild Duck|
|The Crab House||The Crab House|
|Idle Hour||The Bottle House|
|H. Stahr||The Boat House|
|The Doll House||The Doll House|
Some years later Uncle Dick undertook a coastline stabilization project which included installing "rip-rap" along the Northern border of the property along the Sassafras River. Shoreline erosion is still an issue along the eastern border of the property.
After Uncle Dick passed away the Stoneton West property was transferred to Uncle Dick's niece and nephews, Martha A. Thomson, Jay S. Thomson, Eric E. Thomson and Kirk A. Thomson who currently maintain the property (operating as Stoneton West, LLC). Our grandfather, Lester Keephart, had built a small vacation cottage in the 1930's on a small property which adjoined the Inotio Camp property and, after Uncle Dick passed away, "Keephart Cottage" was added to the Stoneton West property.
Presently the "Wild Duck," "The Big House" and "The Keephart Cottage" still exist along with three other buildings which were formerly "Stahr's Cottages" but which no longer serve as rental cottages.
We are working to better understand the history of Inotio Camp and Stoneton West. If you have any information or photographs which you believe may add to the story and help us fill in the blanks please don't hesitate to contact us.