Winona mansion with tunnel and hidden library is on the market for $750K

A mansion in Winona — with a tunnel connecting the two buildings and Minnesota's first in-ground swimming pool — is on the market and has recently gone viral after being featured on social media via Zillow Gone Wild.

The eight-bedroom, six-bathroom, 8,053-square-foot home, located at 22571 Briarcombe Lane, is on the market for $750,000. Listing agent Jenny Cisewski told FOX 9 her favorite features of the 1912-built home are the craftsmanship and details, including the thick molding, built-ins, rounded doorways, ceilings, and the stately brick exterior. 

"This is an amazing property, the sprawling acreage is beautiful," Cisewski said.

The property features two separate but similar mansions connected by a tunnel (the prior owner did renovate the second mansion into mostly garage space). In addition to the numerous bedrooms and bathrooms, the home has a hidden library and a billiard room, among other spaces. The homes are situated on 15 acres adjacent to Signatures Golf Course, with Minnesota's first in-ground swimming pool, a gazebo and spacious greens. 

The home does need some work, though, with the listing stating the home has been deteriorating throughout the years and needs someone to bring it back to its "once gracious original character and charm." And Cisewski admits it's not for the light-hearted or do-it-your-selfer. The listing says the seller is seeking cash buyers only, as the home won't pass any financing. 

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  (Betty Kline)

"I think it’s great that Briarcombe is featured on Zillow Gone Wild. I’ve read many of the comments, they are interesting and entertaining (with a few misconceptions). There definitely has been a peak in interest in the last day," Cisewski said. 

The home has had multiple offers, Cisewski said. 

History of Briarcombe Farm in Winona

Briarcombe Farm has a rich history dating back to the early 1900s, according to Taff Roberts's blog on the home. In 1911, Rockwell Kent was hired to design and build two Georgian Revival homes for sisters Maude and Francis Laird and their husbands Samuel Prentiss and Fredrick Bell, on a 350-acre farm near Winona, Minnesota. The homes, which were named Briarcombe, were completed in 1913.

The Laird sisters lived in Briarcombe until the 1940s, when the property was sold to a new owner, Charles A. Choate, who renamed the property Old Elm Farm and made some changes, including to the Bell mansion. The name was changed again in the 1960s to Lyngholm, when it was purchased for William Christensen and his family. What was left of the Bell mansion was renamed the Silver Dollar, and it's where the Christensens entertained their friends and business associates, Roberts says.

The property was sold again in October 1971 to Wally and Donna Friend, who renamed the property Walden. Then it was sold again in 1986 to Edwin Meyerson and his sister Mildred Sorato of California. 

Read more about the home's history here.