A large ranch for sale a little more than three hours north of Houston comes with its own animal kingdom, of sorts — 36 cows, six Quarter Horses, and one donkey.
The more than 600-acre Hickory Wind Farm in Chandler, 22 miles northeast of Athens and seven miles west of the Tyler airport, is owned by an unidentified Dallas billionaire and his wife. The East Texas ranch is listed at $17 million.
Aside from the 40 critters included in the sale, the property features a main home and three other houses.
The main house was built in the late 1970s for the Von Erich wrestling family. Members of the family practiced in a wrestling ring set up inside a shed on the property, according to local legend.
The property also includes two barns, a covered shooting range, an eight-acre lake with a boat dock and fishing pier, a boathouse, three boat slips, five ponds, and a high-fenced area geared toward animals.
The barn, the staircase in the main house, and bridges at the ranch were handcrafted from cedar trees harvested on the property.
Bonus: Tools, two trucks, two tractors, and other equipment accompany a more than 1,100-square-foot workshop.
The 7,341-square-foot main house, whose renovation was conceived by Tyler architect Mike Butler, comprises five bedrooms, six bathrooms, and two half-bathrooms. Amenities at the main house include an infinity-edge pool, an enclosed wrap-around veranda, and an array of furnishings selected by Dallas designer Cathy Kincaid.
A 1,597-square-foot guest cottage complements the main house; Butler and Kincaid worked on its update. Two other houses are designated for ranch managers.
The current owners bought the ranch in 1992.
“The current owners have enjoyed the ranch for many years and have hosted many … gatherings,” says Compass real estate agent Michelle Wood, who shares the listing with Bryan Pickens of Republic Ranches. “The farm reminded the husband of where he grew up in Virginia, and the homes are elegant and refined, but meant to be lived in casually, in dusty jeans and boots.”