by Sandy Moss, Co-owner, Foxbriar
Nestled low on the shoulders of the famed Thumb Butte, bed and breakfast Foxbriar is a house of history.
More than 100 years ago it began as a humble cabin. Added onto in stages, it shows the craftsmanship of a poor, but honest man who dug the rocks for walls with pick and shovel and hand-mixed cement for floors over many seasons. He salvaged beams from old trestles and purchased doors from Sam Hill’s hardware store in downtown Prescott.
Mick Shepard and Sandy Moss purchased the old home in 2014 and began an unusual renovation, wishing it to be an abode “not of this time or of this place,” which would sweep the visitor back in time. Foxbriar’s clocks all stopped ticking long ago – a signal to slow down, to savor life.
All these many decades later, the floors and doors tend to creak and not a single wall or ceiling is square or plumb. Foxbriar includes boards found in alleys, lakebeds, dumpsters and fields. The library floor is laid with 200-year-old barn wood from Wisconsin. Furnishings came from far and wide – a sturdy front door that once opened into a Prescott High School principal’s office and a ceiling clad with original tin embellishments from the Elks Opera House.
Ancient columns in the front room are of pioneer vintage from Southern Utah, flanked by antique Mexican doors from the Alamo district of San Antonio. Two carved coronation chairs in the main salon sailed from Norway to America by tall ship.
Most of the antiques and fixtures that add charm to Foxbriar were from thrift stores, auctions, yard sales or found abandoned on a corner or curb. The 1900 piano was discarded outside for years before Mick rescued it and added it to Foxbriar.
Window trims and doorframes are embellished with old picture frames, random sticks of wood molding and old Victorian furniture parts. Many of the hinges are mismatched by design or necessity as only one of each could be found. Some of the light fixtures are Old West brothel-style and the living room carpet once graced a Victorian parlor.
Foxbriar’s yard continues the mythic theme with a secret garden, a carriage house and the vinery, an arbor enclosed with a lattice roof and vintage windows from Fort Whipple. A Portuguese skiff hangs upside down below the eaves, and iron corbels from a Wickenburg ranch circa 1820 accent the lintels.
Steeped in history, Foxbriar has been rebuilt from the mist and magic of a past long gone, and welcomes time travelers with an open hearth.
For more information, contact Mick Shepard at 928- 925-9949 or Sandy Moss at 928- 445-0558. The property is located at 2001 W. Thumb Butte Road Prescott, AZ 86305