News from Mamaroneck Historical Society:
The Mamaroneck Historical Society is launching a long-term fundraising campaign to save the 1792 DeLancey House. The house is the home of a prominent Mamaroneck family, and is at the corner of the Boston Post Road and Fenimore Road.
The fundraising campaign will begin with a Fundraising Breakfast on Saturday, May 18th at 10:00 a.m. at the DeLancey House itself, which houses a restaurant, La Piccolo Casa.
There will be a brief historical presentation by Mamaroneck Village Historian, Gloria Pritts.
The house is one of the oldest buildings in Mamaroneck, and is the site where early American author, James Fenimore Cooper, (who wrote Last of the Mohicans) was married to Susan DeLancey in 1811. (There is a plaque noting the event at the entrance to the restaurant).
The Mamaroneck Historical Society, still reeling from the unsuccessful effort to stop demolition of the 1790 Gedney Farm House last year by the Rye Neck School Board and Superintendent, discovered that the DeLancey House was up for sale. Seeing the potential for still more of Mamaroneck’s early history to disappear, the Society decided to begin a fundraising effort.
A representative from the State Historic Preservation Office toured the house recently. Since it was moved from above on Heathcote Hill over one hundred years ago, it can’t be listed on the National Registry, but he said the basic original structure is still sound and he pointed out some original details still visible. He said the house could be fully restored as a significant historical home.
The Society’s hopes are to either move the house to another location (the owners would give the house to the Society if it would be willing to move it) or (preferably) the house, barn (garage) and land behind it could be purchased from the owners and left where it is. Either will take major fundraising for this historic Mamaroneck home.
We would then like to restore it. Our goal is to make it a museum, a learning center of local history for children, visitors, and residents, and (just as importantly), the headquarters for the Mamaroneck Historical Society. (Files, pictures, etc. are all currently stored in a small space at the Mamaroneck Library). Unlike the 1790 Gedney Farm House, the owners of the DeLancey House gratefully don’t want to destroy it, and they have been very cooperative. They’re not actively promoting it for sale, but have told Society members that if a good bid comes along, it would be accepted. The house would need to be removed or it would probably come down… which explains the need to get this fundraising campaign underway.
The Historical Society’s DeLancey Fundraising Committee, chaired by Carol Akin, a trustee, is also planning a DeLancey – Cooper Gala dinner and silent auction and historical presentation on the DeLanceys and James Fenimore Cooper in the fall, on Thursday, October 3rd, at the Larchmont Shore Club.
Committee members are Gloria Pritts, Valerie O’Keeffe, Joan Katen, Laura Katen, Irene McConnell and Lorraine Castagna. Honorary Chairman is Suzi Oppenheimer. Honorary Committee members include Sen. George Latimer, Assemblyman Steve Otis, Mayor Norman Rosenblum, and Larchmont Trustee Peter Fanelli.
For more information or for reservations for the Breakfast, you may email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 834-2983.
The Mamaroneck Historical Society website is:
Contributions may be made to the Mamaroneck Historical Society DeLancey Fund. The Mamaroneck Historical Society is a tax- exempt 501©(3) organization, and all contributions are tax deductible.