10. Alice Austen House
Photo courtesy Alice Austen House by Floto + Warner, Clear Comfort, 2015, © Floto + Warner
Also another site visited by Untapped Cities Insiders, Clear Comfort, a charming waterfront Victorian Gothic Cottage, serves as the Alice Austen House museum. Located in a lovely park on the shore of Staten Island near the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge with sweeping views of Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan, the museum is dedicated to the life and work of Alice Austen. The home dates back to a circa 1700 one-room Dutch farmhouse. In 1844 John Haggerty Austen, Alice Austen’s grandfather, purchased the home and made many of the renovations that gave the home its Victorian Gothic character.
Alice Austen herself moved there as a young girl in the late 1860s with her mother, Alice Cornell Austen, after the two were abandoned by Alice’s father. In 1917, Gertrude Tate moved in, and the two lived together until financial problems forced them to move in 1945. When they left, the house fell into disrepair until a group of concerned citizens saved it from demolition in the 1960s. The museum comprises of three period rooms, including Alice Austen’s recently renovated darkroom, photography galleries, and library.
The Alice Austen House will be open 11 to 5 PM on Saturday, October 13 and Sunday, October 14.
Next, check out 10 Must-Visit Reservation Only Sites in 2018.
Text for this article adapted from the Open House New York website.