291 Mill Creek Road is a log-cabin-style home in Sheridan that embodies the spirit of the Old West.
By now you may be thinking that you’ve seen this home before: a dwelling that’s most likely a vacation home, featuring blonde, rounded logs, cathedral windows and a few Navajo-style rugs strewn throughout.
However, 291 Mill Creek is far from someone’s vacation property. Instead it’s a custom home that’s been authentically and lovingly crafted — a full-time residence that stands as an homage to architectural techniques of the past.
Featuring hand-adzed, dovetail-cornered logs and hand-forged iron fixtures throughout, 291 Mill Creek is a three-level, three-bedroom, three-bathroom home and the place that Glenn and Ann Goldthwait have called home since moving to Sheridan in the mid-2000s.
According to listing agent Dawn Myrvik of PureWest Real Estate and Christie’s International Real Estate in Ennis, what makes the home unique is hand-made details, many of which were created and designed by the homeowners.
Glenn Goldthwait is an old soul in more ways than one. He‘s a real-life blacksmith and is responsible for the home’s iron fixtures — including the chandeliers, railings and curtain rods — which he created in the property’s detached studio space. There he keeps an old-school forge, where he makes primarily architectural fixtures, but also axes, knives and more.
Blacksmithing isn’t a hobby for Goldthwait. He’s made a career from the craft, which he’s been practicing for 35 years.
Goldthwait started blacksmithing in the 1970s after setting out to build several hand-hewn cabins. He discovered that the traditional ironwork he needed was not available, so he purchased the necessary equipment and made the fixtures himself.
“I just got an anvil and a hammer and just started in,” said Goldthwait.
Since then, Goldthwait has demonstrated his skills at Fort Union, Bannack State Park and Nevada City. He has instructed apprentices, as well as hosted Boy Scouts and school children at his studio.
In 2009, the Montana Arts Council inducted him into the Montana Circle of American Masters. He’s also a member of the American Mountain Men organization, a national collective of individuals dedicated to the preservation of the traditions of mountain men prior to 1840.
Goldthwait isn’t the only member of the family who enjoys working with his hands.
Ann Goldthwait’s brother created the logs for the home and even invented a jig to create dovetail corners.
According to Ann, dovetailing, which entails creating interlocking, puzzle-like joints at the corners of a dwelling, was a technique common on the Montana frontier.
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Since 2006, the Goldthwaits have called 291 Mill Creek Road their home in Sheridan, where Ann operates Kindred Spirits Gift Gallery.
Throughout 291 Mill Creek Road one encounters a warm, organic feel.
The main level boasts an open floor plan, while its living space features a wood-burning stove and overlooks several mountain ranges. Radiant floor heat, meanwhile, keeps the home cheery in the wintertime.
Sitting on nearly 16 acres and bordering public land, two of the property’s notable features include a greenhouse and decks on the main and basement levels, which overlook a lush hayfield framed by mountain vistas. Deer, elk, moose, turkeys and other wildlife are regularly spotted on the property, which also features a two-car detached garage.
“The views here are so stupendous — knock your socks off,” said Ann of the scenery.
Ann says some of her favorite features of the 2,908-square-foot, $875,000 home include the kitchen’s soapstone countertops and it’s large built-in cutting board.
Goldthwait said granite countertops can be a bit austere at times, but soapstone gives the durability of stone and offers something inviting.
“It’s impervious to pretty much everything. You can put anything on it and it doesn’t stain … A lot of old farmhouses had it,” said Goldthwait. “Even if it feels cool to the touch it has a warmth… It’s more organic.”
The sink is also of soapstone, while the kitchen cabinets are of knotty alder.
Each level of 291 Mill Creek has its own bedroom and bathroom. On the top level, one will find the home’s master suite, whose bathroom has travertine tile with slate details, a walk-in shower, and a claw foot tub. A small balcony adjoins the master bedroom, where Ann and her husband often enjoy a cup of coffee while listening to the babbling of Mill Creek, located nearby.
The top level of the home also includes a loft space, where one can get a view of the home’s high, peaked ceiling and exposed beam-work. The Goldthwaits currently use the loft space as an office, utilizing the area’s fiber-optic internet.
Ann said it’s bittersweet to leave behind the home she and her husband built together, but the two are looking forward to what comes next.
“We just know we’re ready for that next chapter in our lives,” she said.