Bull Stone House
The Bull Stone House is located in the town of Hamptonburgh, in central Orange County, New York. It is a ten-room stone house built in the 1720s by William Bull and Sarah Wells, pioneer settlers of the area. Bull, a stonemason, met and married Wells, a fellow immigrant to the Wawayanda Patent (much of the present day towns of Goshen, Hamptonburgh, Minisink, and Warwick) while they were both working for the patent proprietors. Sarah Wells arrived in the area as the patent's first female settler in 1712. She came there to work as a cook at the age of sixteen. She built her own log cabin two years later. In 1715 Bull arrived in North America from Hamptonborough, England and also came to work at the Wawayanda Patent, where they met. Their marriage in 1718, was the first between European settlers in Goshen. Building the house was a joint effort between husband and wife. They received the land as a wedding gift and began building the house in 1726. Sarah carried the stones to the site and William cut and laid them, while they lived in a pair of temporary log cabins. It took thirteen years to complete, surviving a 1728 earthquake in the process. (Other sources place the date of the house's construction as 1722 or 1727). The completed building stands 40 feet square (1,600 sq ft, 144 m²) and has walls three feet thick (1 m). Their descendants dispersed within the adjacent region, with the houses of Thomas (now a county museum) and William III also on the National Register. The family has lent its name to the hamlet of Bullville and Thomas Bull Park. Sarah Wells survived William Bull, who died in 1755. She remarried and lived to the age of 102, leaving 344 direct descendants. The county government has renamed Orange County Route 8, near the house, to Sarah Wells Trail, in her honor. The local Girl Scouts council was named for her as well. The house and surrounding property have remained in the Bull family's ownership. Today an eighth-generation descendant lives there as the resident caretaker. Tours are available for the general public for a small fee. Descendants from all over the United States have returned to the house every year since 1868 for a family reunion. The house has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1974. The 120-acre (48 ha) William Bull and Sarah Wells homestead boasts another historical structure of significance, a Dutch barn.