Renovated 18th-Century Saltbox with Storied History Listed with William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty

Over the years, the expanded residence has served as a shoe factory, the home of famed actor and broadcaster Sheriff Bob Dixon, and a shelter for rescued animals

New Canaan, Conn. March 13, 2015 William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty announced today that the firm has listed a circa-1756 saltbox residence in New Canaan, Conn., that boasts an unusually storied history. The home served as a shoe factory in the 18th century; was home in the early 20th century to the radio personality and actor Sheriff Bob Dixon, known for his television westerns as well as for his close friendship with broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow; and in recent years has hosted a number of horses and donkeys rescued from around the country. New Canaan agent Rita Kirby has the listing, which is offered at $3,295,000.

Renovation and expansion has also played an essential part of the home’s history, with the home’s first additions created as early as the 1780s. The current owner, Bethany Zaro, began working on multiple improvements with architect James Schettino in 2004, who stated upon seeing the interior for the first time, “It’s already here; we just have to release it.” The large new kitchen was redesigned with three skylights and all-new appliances, a new kitchen island built of wood from the property’s own barn hayloft, and canvas wall paintings by an artist who completed work at Litchfield County, Conn.’s landmark Mayflower Inn and Spa. Additional renovations included a reconstructed family room with locally sourced millwork and floors, an upper floor that once had separate standalone wings that have now been connected, a new master suite and master bath, an outdoor entertaining and dining terrace, new exterior stone walls and more.

The main residence has five bedrooms in total, with four full and two half baths. The meadow-like grounds also feature a carriage barn with two-bedroom apartment, pool and spa, and numerous syrup-producing maple trees.

Zaro, a nurse who specializes in working with children with special needs, has used the four and a half-acre grounds to host a number of rescued animals from around the country. Her property has been home to several horses she saved in the past, and today she keeps numerous rescued donkeys, which will go to live at New Canaan’s Grace Farms upon the sale of the property. Members of the community are free to come to the property to visit the donkeys as often as they like, and find that the donkeys, unlike horses, will herd with them. Zaro brings the special needs children she works with on field trips to the property throughout the year.

“This quintessential Connecticut country estate is both an extraordinary home and an extraordinary property, combining history, style and sophisticated luxuries,” said Kirby. “It’s the perfect marriage of charm, character and 21st-century amenities, affording a lifestyle of relaxation and rest.”

For more information on the property, which is located at 854 North Wilton Road, visit the firm’s website here.


About William Pitt and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty

Founded in 1949, William Pitt and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty manages a $3.3-billion-plus portfolio with more than 1,000 sales associates in 26 brokerages spanning Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Westchester County, New York. William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty, combined with partner firm Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty, is the largest Sotheby’s International Realty(R) affiliate globally and the 28th-largest real estate company by sales volume in the United States. A full-service real estate firm headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, William Pitt and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty provides ancillary services including commercial services through its affiliation with Building and Land Technology, a second-generation development company based in Stamford, Connecticut; William Pitt Insurance Services; and an award-winning global relocation division.  For more information, visit the website at

Sotheby’s International Realty’s worldwide network includes more than 16,570 sales associates located in 760 offices throughout 60 countries and territories.

William Pitt Sothebys International Realty Contact:

Rita Kirby

(203) 984-7665

Post navigation

Patch- New CanaanThe Day
Mar 13