The three-story brick house and its 34 acres were the home of the 19th-century utopian Oneida Community, founded in 1848 by John Humphrey Noyes. The sect believed that the second coming of Christ had already occurred and that a new Eden could be achieved on Earth. Followers considered themselves sinless and believed in the sharing of property and spouses. The group, which supported itself by making silk thread, animal traps, canned foods, and silverware, eventually led
to the formation of tableware manufacturer Oneida Ltd. The mansion, a 93,000-square-foot National Historic Landmark with beautiful mansard roofs, was constructed in stages between 1861 and 1914 and contains 35 apartments (some occupied by descendants of the original community members), a large hall, a dining room, and a museum. Guided tours are the only way to see the interior.