Charlotte Gale brought only a waterproof backpack last June for her overnight stay on Duck Ledges Island.
A woman from New Jersey purchased this one-bedroom house and island off of Addison, Maine, which offers sound sleeping and no mosquitoes in a rustic setting. Credit: Courtesy of Dean Tyler Photography

A licensed massage therapist from New Jersey was not put off by having to survive one night in an off-grid, one-bedroom house on Duck Ledges Island before qualifying to purchase it.

That was what former owner William Milliken of Bold Coast Properties required of a prospective buyer of the island and home, which is only inhabitable from May to October because of inhospitable weather.

Charlotte Gale of New Jersey, brought along only a waterproof backpack last June to stay in the rustic Down East getaway that has no indoor plumbing, heat or gas. Her love of nature and ability to rough it was enough to persuade Milliken to sell it to her, despite a lot of interest and higher offers from other prospective buyers, Insider reported.

Gale told the publication that Milliken sold to her because he believed she would treat the island, which has lots of wildlife, right. She bought the property, which is a short boat ride from Jonesport, for $339,000 in July.

Charlotte Gale brought only a waterproof backpack last June for her overnight stay on Duck Ledges Island.
This Duck Ledges Island house in Addison has 540 square feet of space inside plus an outhouse. Credit: Courtesy of Dean Tyler Photography

She stayed at the island in the fall during a storm. The home remained solid, although she could hear the wind blustering around it.

“A lot of people are like, ‘Wow, you’re really brave. You’re on that island by yourself,’” she told Insider. “And I was like, ‘No.’ I just always felt very safe there.”

She told the Bangor Daily News that she wants to put in a flower garden but has no running water, so residents in the area have offered to help.

“One local fisherman said he passes by the island on Tuesdays and could pop in to help water the garden, and another said he goes by the island once a week on Fridays and can help,” she said. “The outpouring of support and welcome from the people of Maine has been incredible.”

She plans to keep the island unspoiled, and envisions hosting writing, cooking or massage-therapy sessions there in the future. 

But Mainers with keen imaginations may have other ideas. Horror novelist Stephen King, responding to an earlier tweet about the property, wrote, “There’s a novel here, just waiting to be written.”