Tuesday, June 17, 2014

More Inspiration

"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope."
-Martin Luther King, Jr.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

186 Crescent Av, Water Mill - "Penny Haven"

186 Crescent Avenue, Water Mill
The home at 186 Crescent Avenue was built about 1785 for Caleb Halsey (1755-1810). It was originally located just up the road at about 258 Halsey Lane, where the land continues to be owned by the Halsey family since before 1750.

About 1929, Lawrence Halsey (1881-1965) sold the house for $200 to Mr. and Mrs. Hendricks V. Duryea who had it moved down to the end of the not yet created Crescent Avenue and renovated into a Colonial Revival style summer retreat. Hendricks, known as "Drix" was a famous architectural photographer and muralist as well as a descendent of the wealthy starch manufacturing family from Glen Cove. During the renovation, when taking up floor boards in the attic, they discovered a penny from 1804, thus choosing the name "Penny Haven" for the residence. They hired the architectural firm of Goodwillie & Moran to design the renovation, a very well-known firm that also designed "Stone Eagles", a Tudor style mansion in Montclair, New Jersey listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Penny Haven in its original location about 1890. Note the original center chimney.
Penny Haven in its original location, about 1925. Note the dual internal chimneys and the new bay window.
After the Duryeas, the home was owned by Eleanor Tyson Bridgman until 1956, by George and Mary Kent Jr. until 1967, by Samuel H. Swint Jr., until 1987, and then by the Sargent family, before selling it in January 2012 to Andrew Zaro. Mr. Zaro had negotiated with the Halsey family in 2013 for them to take the house back to their property and pay all related expenses. That deal fell through. Mr. Zaro is now applying with the town to have the structure demolished. He is aware of the house's age and local significance but is not interested in preserving it. Let's hope he and the Halsey family might come to some 11th hour agreement.

The rear of the home today. This rear/water side was originally the front. The original front door survives.
See the NY Post article out today about the house here: http://nypost.com/2014/06/08/southampton-residents-want-wealthy-mogul-to-donate-historic-farmhouse/.