From The History of Hancock at
The Cohill Manor which was the “original log structure known as "Flint's Chance," that was visited by George Washington, has been embellished by additions through the years and now stands as a stately manor house owned by the Cohill family. The home is open to the public as the Cohill Manor Bed & Breakfast. Twentieth century President Franklin D. Roosevelt is reputed to have also been a guest of the Cohill family hospitality. ”
You can also visit the Cohill Manor Web site at http://www.nfis.com/~cohill/
West of Hancock on Route 144, a roadside historic marker proclaims “OLD MR. FLINT’S HOME”. The sign has an arrow pointing to the north and a paragraph which explains: “George Washington’s diary (while he visited Berkeley Springs in 1769) states: ‘Aug. 30 Old Mr. Flint dined with us.’ And on Sept 4: ‘Rid to the Potomac where my horses were from thence to Mr. Flint’s and the Pennsylvania line, and returned to dinner.’”
Beyond the arrow, down a slope, lies a white stucco house with a multi-arched porch and a raised-seam tin roof. The land on which this house stands was originally surveyed for Joseph Flint on November 12, 1762, and the patent, dated 1763 and containing 258 acres, was for a “Resurvey on Flint’s Chance.” Flint was an Indian trader who apparently met George Washington on one Washington’s many journeys through western Maryland. Little else is known about him. The eastern section of the home is the log cabin that once was Joseph Flint’s.
Another early dweller of the home was Dr. James B. Delaplane, a Hancock physician. A number of his medical books dating back to the 1800’s were found in the attic and are still in the home.
Sometime around 1876, Edmund Pendleton (“E.P.”) Cohill bought the house. In 1886, he began using goats to clear the mountainside in order to plant 40 acres of York Imperial apples. The property became one of the first commercial apple orchards in the State of Maryland. E.P. Cohill had four sons, and two of them, Andrew and Leo, helped him in the orchards. When the orchards were sold in 1919, Andrew Cohill and his family moved to Flint’s Chance. Andrew and his wife, Helen
Morgan Cohill, raised 10 children in the home and the house was expanded and altered to fit the needs of this large family. Andy was a well-known local rotarian who played an active part in community affairs. Early local newspaper clippings tell of rotary meetings and other such gatherings that were held at Flint’s Chance over the years. Early accounts also tell of a visit from President Franklin D. Roosevelt who is said to have visited the Cohill family and joined in a party at the packing shed just to the east of the house.
The property remained in the Cohill family for some 80 years, passing among the 10 children and then to their children. In 1976, the home was sadly sold outside the family. During the next 14 years, the home had two owners and fell into a horrible state of disrepair. Then, on September 28, 1990, E.P. Cohill’s great-grandson, John, and his then-fiancee, Deborah Strong, purchased the home and its 11 acres, bringing the house back into the family. Since that time, John and Deborah have married and have spent all of their spare time restoring the 16-room home to its original beauty. They share the home with a herd of angora goats, a family of geese, mallard ducks, a cat, chickens and three friendly basset hounds. February and March are “kidding” months at Cohill Manor and they eagerly await the birth of our baby angora “kids”. March and October are shearing times. Guests are invited to share in these experiences. Flint’s Chance has become the home of yet another generation of Cohills and a continuing thread of Hancock history.
Although the home is historically known as Flint’s Chance, it is fondly known to the family and to Hancock and other local residents as Cohill Manor.