Photo of Whitman via Wikimedia; Photo of 99 Ryerson Street via NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project
A coalition of preservationists, LGBT groups and literary experts is asking the Landmarks Preservation Commission to reassess their decision last year to not landmark Walt Whitman’s Brooklyn home, the last residence of the 19th-century poet remaining in New York. Located at 99 Ryerson Street in Clinton Hill, the home was where Whitman and his family lived between May 1, 1855 and May 1, 1856.
While living at the home, Whitman wrote “Leaves of Grass,” a collection of poems considered to be one of the most significant American works ever. The home is also one of the earliest extant buildings in NYC associated with a member of the LGBT community.
This lavish townhouse could easily pass for a Parisian or Italian home, but it’s, in fact, hiding behind a traditional brownstone facade on the Upper East Side. Located at 234 East 61st Street, the four-story residence is part of the ultra-exclusive Treadwell Farm Historic District, which encompasses only two blocks. Though it was built along with its neighbors in 1873, the house underwent a unique interior renovation in 1910 that added its 21-foot vaulted ceilings and rear, arched addition that opens to the magical south-facing garden. Other stylistically unique architectural elements that have made their way in include the wrought iron railings, ornately carved marble fireplace, and etched glass windows. After last selling in 2006 for $7.9 million, it’s now asking $13.9 million.
You don’t want to miss this one
Designed by prolific Upper West Side architect Charles T. Mott in 1891 for Dow Jones founder Edward Jones, the facade of this five-story townhouse at 325 West 76th Street hints at the rich history and the grand details within. The current owners renovated this 20-foot-wide, 7,515-square-foot home in the 21st century, slowly and meticulously preserving historic details in the transformation back to single-family mansion. This turn-key historic house is on the market for $11.9 million, including six bedrooms, an elevator, a screening room, a top-of-the-line kitchen and several entertaining spaces.
Take a five-story tour
Tucked within the Sniffen Court Mews in Murray Hill, blocked from the public by a private gate off East 36th Street, composer and songwriter Cole Porter’s former townhouse has sold for $4.8 million (h/t New York Post). The former engraver’s studio, located in one of just a few private mews in New York City at 156 East 36th Street originally served as stables during the Civil War era.
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Here’s a rare opportunity to own one of the gorgeous neo-Tudor townhouses on Convent Avenue in Hamilton Heights. Built in 1890 and offered for the first time in 50 years, 327 Convent Avenue is asking $3.7 million. Located a gorgeous block steeped in history (Alexander Hamilton’s country estate was originally just one block away), this six-bedroom home is nearly 5,000 square feet with tons of original details and a sun-drenched backyard.
Get a look inside
Less than 50 miles from NYC, a piece of history is for sale for $1,175,000 in Hackettstown, New Jersey (h/t CIRCA). The landmark Beattystown Stone Mill, built around 1750, was redesigned, reconstructed, and renovated by Yale architect/owner Charles Buckley, in the 1980s. Sitting above the Musconetcong River in Warren County on over 1,500 feet of river frontage, this incredibly unique home with four bedrooms has almost 6,000 square feet of open concept, loft-style living space with exposed hewn ceiling beams and structural and sculptural beams, stone walls, an entire wall of glass, and even the original millrace that still flows under the living room!
You have to see inside
Wooden houses are certainly dispersed throughout Brooklyn, but it’s a rare opportunity when one hits the market. A few months ago, we uncovered a listing for Crown Heights’ oldest home, a circa-1850s wood frame. Now, a pair of rare clapboard homes have hit the market in Clinton Hill and they’re even older. Numbers 448 and 450 Waverly Avenue are thought to have been built in the 1840s or even earlier, according to the neighborhood’s designation report. “The unusual pair of extremely wide (25 feet) clapboard houses” are the only example of pure Greek Revival buildings in the district, and they can be yours, individually or together for $4.4 million.
Take the tour
Here’s a chance to own one of the oldest homes in Manhattan, and likely the oldest home in the neighborhood, for $7.75 million (h/t Curbed). The Federal-style rowhouse at 57 Sullivan Street was built in 1816 and throughout its 200+ year-history it’s served as a microcosm for the diversity of the neighborhood, first owned by a local mason, then by both Irish and Italian immigrants, and most recently by a couple who fought the property’s inevitable landmarking in 2016.
Check it out
Just over an hour’s drive west of Midtown, in Lebanon Township, NJ, this three-story, three bedroom house is asking just $347,000 (h/t CIRCA). And though it’s priced much less than most Manhattan studios, it sits on nearly nine acres of land. For sale for the first time in 35 years, the circa 1810 Bank House has a modern kitchen and baths and a third-floor addition, but retains its vintage charm with preserved interior period details such as hand-hewn beamed ceilings, wide-plank pine floors, deep window wells, a wood-burning fireplace, and Jersey winder stairs.
As one of New York City’s many hidden-in-plain-sight secret addresses, Pomander Walk is a gated 1920s community of Tudor-style mini-homes resembling an English village nestled right in the middle of Manhattan’s Upper West Side. The brightly-painted home at 265 West 94th Street, asking $2.5 million, is a rarely-available opportunity to live in this unique village-in-the-city community.
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