Bloomfield Blossoms: p. 78-79 Creator
Smith, Kay, 1925- Institution
Bloomfield Township Public Library Subject
Bloomfield Township (Mich.) -- History Subject
Gilbert Lake House (Bloomfield Township, Mich.) -- History Subject
Dwellings -- Michigan -- Bloomfield Township -- History Item Number
part of 'Bloomfield Blossoms' by Kay Smith Type
text, image Format
CANDIDATE #1 THE WINNER!
THE GILBERT LAKE HOUSE
Joseph Gilbert bought his 160 acres on Gilbert Lake on
June 24th, 1823. While he's not mentioned in any of our
early county histories, his name does appear in 1829 in
the Bloomfield Township annual meeting records as an
overseer of highways. He held this position for four years
until 1833 when his name disappears from the records.
Later the farm changed hands many times, eventually
becoming part of the Peabody Farms, but in 1898 it was
still known as "Gilbert Lake Farm."
Three rooms remain from the original farmhouse, which
has been added to many times. In the room pictured here
we can see the hand-carved beams. The original fireplace
was made smaller in succeeding renovations, but still
retained for a long time its wooden ancestry. In the early
days, fireplaces were of wood with a heavy clay cover,
but had to be watched carefully so they would not catch
fire and burn down the log house.
The family fire had to be tended carefully, as if it went out,
there was no way to start it again except to go to the
nearest neighbor's house and beg a few hot coals. The
children were often dispatched on this errand and brought
back the coals in a brass pan to rekindle the fire.
An interesting point about the Gilbert Lake Farm is the
existence of two large stones, one with the inscription
1864 and one 1867. The 1877 County History notes the
existence of a private cemetery on the southwestern side
of Gilbert Lake. It notes that the first interment was that of
Joseph Gilbert's wife, Nancy. "From being a cluster of
family graves it came to be used as a place of interment
by the inhabitants of the vicinity, until in this, as in the
other old graveyards of Bloomfield, the number of silent
occupants has become very large."