Take the East Hampton Historical Society House Tour

November 18, 2011

A Federal case: The Captain Wickham S. Havens house

Traditionally, the five sites of the East Hampton Historical Society allow us to look back and see how people lived on the East End of Long Island over a period of 350 years. Except on one day each year, when it focuses on the present and encourages us to see how people live right now. Every Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend, the society conducts its annual house tour, with the owners of five very special houses opening their homes to ticket holders as a fundraiser for the organization.

The house tour benefits the historic properties that the society owns or administers—including Mulford Farm, Clinton Academy, and the Osborn-Jackson House—but the houses on the tour itself cover quite a span of time, ranging from the mid-19th century right up to present day. The newest of the houses, completed only last year, is the sumptuously modern Arc House, so named because the main living section of this home, designed by East Hampton architect Maziar Behrooz, appears to be a gentle curve rising out of the ground to form a harmonious crescent.

But elegance comes in many shapes. Approximately 160 years ago, Captain Wickham S. Havens managed to construct a superbly refined Federal-style home in Sag Harbor that was then moved to an exclusive area of East Hampton in 1960. Today the home still dazzles the eye with its precise proportions and its unique third-story window.

When William B. Tuthill, the architect of Carnegie Hall, was commissioned to build a house for Charles H. Adams (who started in knitwear but went to politics) on Lee Avenue in 1891, he did not hold back. The huge, Queen Anne–style home is quite possibly the largest of the remaining summer cottages in the East Hampton estate area. A part of the regular tour, the restored house is also open the prior evening for you to enjoy drinks and hors d’oeuvres at the benefit cocktail party.

For proof that a less ambitious undertaking can still produce a wonderful structure, visit the tour’s Windpump Tower, on Huntting Lane. In 1894, before there was a piped water system in the village, this utilitarian structure was built to house the equipment supplying water to the Greycroft estate. In 1945 it was moved a short distance and, with an addition, became one of East Hampton’s most fascinating residences.

And, finally, a contractor’s own house on Cooper Lane serves as a showcase of what people should look for in new construction. Built for his own family, the home, fittingly, is the result of years of work for his Hamptons clients.



Bid an Organized Adieu to the Hamptons

September 06, 2011

As an organization professional and founder and CEO of Cross It Off Your List, Linda Rothschild is well-schooled in the art of summerhouse to city house transitions. Here, Rothschild writes a checklist for an organized adieu to your Hamptons home, as well as a few charitable organizations for those items that will not be making the journey back to the city.               

  Linda Rothschild

1. From clothing and books to kitchenware and toiletries, things from city houses drift out to the Hamptons all summer. Do a thorough sweep of the house so you don't leave behind essentials—have suitcases and boxes ready to pack up.
2. Determine which fridge and pantry items won’t last until next summer. Donate as much as you can to food pantries in Sag Harbor and East Hampton. 
3. Get a head start on next summer: Eliminate what you know you won’t need next year, such as toys, clothing and furniture your kids will grow out of. Check closets for items put aside that never went to use.
4. Take a lot of photos this summer? Now is a good time to organize them. Sift through and find your favorites to make photo books for your family or friends. Organize digital photos onto a portable hard drive according to date and event title. Organize your memories—don’t just throw them in a file.  
5. If you put anything in storage for the winter, be sure to keep an inventory of what is there. Boxes go to storage and never come out because we forget what’s there.

Where to donate in the Hamptons:
Amaryllis Farm Equine Rescue: Accepts linens, towels, hairbrushes. 

Birthright International, Hampton Bays: Accepts maternity and baby clothes.
Food pantries: Every town from Westhampton to Montauk has a local food pantry.
Habitat for Humanity: Accepts appliances, tools, doors, windows, etc.
The Ladies Village Improvement Society of East Hampton: Clothing, furniture and all paperback, hardback and children’s books.

The Retreat: Currently in need of baby clothing ages 3-6 years old. Also takes most household items.
Timothy Hill Children’s Ranch: Accepts furniture, clothing, household items.


Charitable Spotlight: Harvest

September 02, 2011

  Faith Middleton
  Little bites at the 2010 Harvest Festival tasting
  Representatives of Croteaux Vineyards

It was a snowy day in Connecticut when I got a call from Roman Roth, winemaker and technical director at the ravishing Wölffer Estate Vineyard in Sagaponack. He was chairing an event in September called Harvest: Wine Auction and Celebration of Long Island’s East End, celebrating the Long Island wine region and raising funds for three regional charities. He wanted me to be the event’s honorary chair. What a gift on a chilly winter day! Months later, on a warm, late summer evening, I was transported to the Hamptons to do good for causes I am passionate about

Harvest is sponsored by the Long Island Merlot Alliance and Long Island Wine Council and presented by Food & Wine, and it benefits East End Hospice, Group for the East End and the Peconic Land Trust. I have a special place in my heart for that narrow strip of land where Roman and his colleagues are making gorgeous Merlot, smooth Sauvignon Blanc and other world-class wines. As is probably clear to anyone who has listened to “The Faith Middleton Show” and “Faith Middleton’s Food Schmooze” on WNPR, wine and food are my life. I believe in the importance of preserving open space, agricultural lands and clean air and water. And I feel strongly about granting the dignity of a peaceful passage for the generations to come. In an area like the East End of Long Island, where so many beautiful farms and vineyards are passed down from one generation to the next, Harvest brings together all the elements for the richness of life, now and into the future.

I hope you will join me for the Harvest Moon Gala & Live Auction of Long Island Wine on September 17 at the Ludlow Farm on Mecox Bay in Bridgehampton, where I will be mistress of ceremonies. And don’t miss the other Harvest events: the Fall for Long Island Tasting Festival earlier the same day (I will be there savoring those local flavors), and the educational Wine Salon programs and fabulous 10-Mile Dinners at private homes. Harvest has the perfect ingredients for a heartwarming autumn celebration. Harvest takes place September 3, 10, 16 and 17 at wineries, private homes and the Ludlow Farm in Bridgehampton. For information and tickets, visit harvesteastend.com.


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