A few miles south of Belfast, Maine, is a tiny Victorian village of architectural antiques. The pieces are not furniture, however, but rather entire houses.
During the 1850s, the village sprung up as a Methodist camp where each church had their own campsite. In time, larger ships began arriving, delivering more people, and the temporary campsites were built into permanent structures.
The cottages are grouped around a grassy square that slopes to a pier overlooking Penobscot Bay and then spreads out to over 30 acres of charm. The gingerbread style is known as Carpenter Gothic and Bayside is one of the oldest and most intact collections of the style.
Today the hidden hamlet serves as a storybook paradise to the families that purchased these homes long ago and have been handing them down for generations. Each summer the population grows to around 300, much less than the thousands a century before. Staying in Bayside is quiet and reflective, cool and calming.
Bayside is the genuine article and its authenticity takes you back in time. Most interiors are not winterized, so the framing is still visible as the structures list, buckle, and sag. The open framing in the walls serve as shelves for books and beach treasure that begin to reveal this Bayside state of mind.