The living room, front left room, was once adorned with a stencilled ceiling which has recently been covered over. The mansion also houses a number of original wood grained doors and baseboards. In addition, the exterior side of the front entrance door is stencilled with simple artwork that frames the individual panels. The artist and date of the artwork remain unknown although it is assumed that the decorative painting may have been complete during the 1890s when the building operated as a church.
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This mansion was first built as a church by the Lutherans and Presbyterians of Middle LaHave on the edge of the LaHave River. Because the structure was being undermined by the tides, it was hoisted onto skids and moved across the river. Shortly afterward, it was bought by the Evangelical Lutheran Synod which decided the church would become an orphanage. The building was raised once again and drawn by oxen up the frozen river to the Bridgewater government wharf. It’s final resting place situated about two miles from the town centre. Renovations began in 1889. The Bethany Orphans’ Home began accepting children in 1906. It housed between 22 and 25 children at a time. Rev. W.H. Little was the house father until 1907 when Rev. C.H. Little arrived from North Carolina. The orphanage closed in 1916 because Rev. Little could not secure sufficient government funding. The mansion was purchased by Alice and John W. Whynot and their son Harold from Buckfield, for $2,500. The family converted the home and land into a dairy farm. In 1936, Harold bought the property from his parents for the nominal sum of $1. In 1992, Carolyn Oikle and Gary Keith Whynot bought the property. In 1994, Carolyn and her second husband, Brian Conrad, began renovating home. They opened their doors as the Bethany Bed and Breakfast in 2001. To date, the four star B&B offers four guest rooms with ensuite bathrooms, with a total of 22 rooms in total. The front right room of the house features painted surfaces which were recently discovered throughout the ongoing renovation process. The walls are decorated with a 3 ft. high border with panels hosting reverse stencil patterns in green and white. Mrs. Oikle-Conrad believes the artwork was composed by use of calcimine, a mineral wash often applied to walls and ceilings, because her attempts to wash the painted walls resulted in the creation of a chalk-like paste.
Latitude: 44.4028 Longitude: -64.5111