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Washington Park home has character and more

Walk into this unassuming house on River Road and, in a way, it’s like stepping back in time. It’s easy to imagine a toasty fire warming the living room; china and crystal displayed in the built-in hutch on the far wall; a child curled up in the window seat looking over a substantial back yard.

At 320 River Road is a piece of Washington Park’s past: a circa-1930 cottage that has remarkably retained its originality.

“It’s got a lot of character,” said Matt Miller, a real estate agent with Keller Williams. “It’s got that old-time cottage feel, you know? Very cozy. Very unique.”

TRENDING: The painted paneling on the living room walls is very much in style right now, as it was 90 years ago when the cottage was built.

Unique can be found in the many built-ins, making the most of space throughout the house. It can be found in the lighting fixtures that may have come with the original build. It can also be found in some now-trending painted paneled walls and the unpainted tongue and groove wood paneled ceiling in the bonus room added to the back of the house in the 1960s. Unique is everywhere, from the glass doorknob and lead glass window on the front door to the rotary phone that still hangs on the wall in the kitchen and the Dutch door leading from the bonus room to the brick patio out back.

INSIDE/OUTSIDE: A window seat not only adds more storage in the house, but, with a few cushions, creates a place to curl up with a book on rainy days.

At 1,296 square feet, a two bedroom, one bath cottage, Miller says this house is perfect for a couple just starting their life together, or one downsizing in their maturity. A new roof was installed last year; a new heating/cooling source in 2016; and the exterior painted just weeks ago. Across a brick courtyard is a driver-in carport that contains a workshop and more storage space. Its .45-acre lot stretches beyond the backyard fence through woods to the creek, and the flower beds dotting the brick patio are waiting to be planted with herbs or flowering perennials; similarly, a ballast rock-framed pool awaits its return to a water element in a thriving garden.

BRICKS AND BEDS: Flower beds dot a brick patio just off the back door. On the left, a ballast-rock shaped pool awaits lily pads and fountain.

Those stones, the house and its history, were created by the Miltenberger family — the only family that has owned this cozy cottage tucked onto the north side of River Road. Built by Del Sr. and Rena Miltenberger, Del Jr. grew up there, as did his daughters. Del Miltenberger Jr. was well-known throughout Washington and Washington Park, having served as an auxiliary deputy sheriff for Beaufort County for 20 years and Washington Park’s police commissioner for 16.

PAST TO PRESENT: Del Miltenberger Jr. and his half-sister Joann Hodges pose for this Easter Sunday picture taken in front of the River Road home in the late 1940s.

Though the Miltenberger family home has been rented in recent years, for the first time in nearly a century, it’s on the market.

“They just love Washington,” Miller said, of owner Kim Miltenberger Warren and her family who now live in Apex. “She grew up here. This is her house. It’s been passed down through the family — it’s very sentimental to her.”

Those in the market for a cozy cottage that’s just a short walk to the river and an even shorter drive to downtown Washington can visit Saturday. Miller will be hosting an open house from noon to 3 p.m.

For more information, call Matt Miller at 919-417-0028.

DAYS OF YORE: Many of the home’s lighting fixtures may actually be original to the house and glass doorknobs can be found throughout, both adding an even more nostalgic feel to the Washington Park home.