Ashton Head - Breathtaking private property in the heart of Aiken
Aiken, Aiken County, South Carolina
'Ashton Head' — A truly breathtaking private property, meticulously stewarded since 2006 to create an environmentally positive footprint in the heart of Aiken's 302 Equestrian Corridor, close to downtown in the sporting capital of the Southeast, now being offered for sale.
This parcel of approximately 95+/- acres was originally part of a 1000-acre farm owned by Aiken County farmer Ashton Head, who worked the land with mules and managed a longleaf pine forest from which he took the lumber to build his home and barns. The farm was eventually subdivided, and in 2006 a parcel of 162 acres was purchased by the present owner, who had been drawn to the then long abandoned farmland by the presence of five magnificent large live oaks which surrounded a remnant old brick packing shed and smokehouse. With heart pine timbers salvaged from the old barn, the renovation of the brick shed, affectionally known as 'The Head,' along with the smokehouse, both built in the early 1900s, began.
Once the buildings were completed, focus turned to the gentle preparation of a landscape that worked with nature, highlighting the old-growth live oaks, managing the existing pine forests, and creating a upland pond for wildlife from which the soil was used for a privacy berm placed along the road. In the following years, the quality of the pastures became a priority, taking dirt and turning it into soil with the implementation of regenerative practices, high-impact rotational grazing, and cool season cover crops.
As the soils improved with the help of a small herd of cattle, goats, and target specific cover crops, the use of synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, and wormers have gradually been phased out. Thinning the stagnant pine forests, utilizing prescribed burning, and planting native wild grasses throughout, has seen a return of quail, turkey, and deer.
The property on offer is approximately 95 acres, with the historic brick building as the centerpiece, beautifully restored to create a sophisticated yet rustic living space complete with full bath/shower, custom kitchen, commercial quality appliances, wood burning fireplace, and several cozy seating areas for dining and lounging.
A distinctive brick archway, inspired by the great Louisiana architect, Albert Hays Town, leads into a courtyard that defines the outdoor space and sets the stage for the natural beauty that lies ahead. The five old-growth live oaks surround the building, of which three are encompassed by wood decks, offering a perfect platform for gathering under the stars. At night the soft landscape lighting highlight these oaks, and the four additional outdoor fireplaces complete the mystical setting.
Stretching to the east of the historic buildings, there is a wonderful combination of giant live oaks, pasture, and managed pine forest with hiking and riding trails. The pine woods are situated on gentle rolling terrain, including a perfect area suitable for a large pond. A well services the entire property providing plenty of excellent water for the building, livestock troughs, and landscape irrigation. A 50 amp RV hookup also exists for convenience.
Make an appointment to experience the grounds of 'Ashton Head,' as no photograph can replicate the aura of this hidden gem. It is a unique property deliberately curated so the next owner can create their perfect home and continue the legacy of stewardship. Additional acreage is available. Call the listing agent for details.
Deirdre Stoker Vaillancourt
, Meybohm Real Estate