Sunday, September 22, 2013
WestportNow Teardown of the Day: 158 Hillspoint Road
An application for a permit to demolish the house at Westport’s 158 Hillspoint Road, in the Compo Beach area, is in process. Built in 1803, the two-story antique has 2,752 square feet and is situated on a .39-acre property. Because the house was built more than 50 years ago, the application will be reviewed by the Westport Historic District Commission. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
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Really Westport? 158 Hillspoint Road is a teardown? This beautiful home was built more than 200 years ago and has probably had several generations of families nurtured within it’s walls. For this home to meet a wrecking ball is truly sad to me. Won’t someone save it from what seems to be it’s untimely fate? I would if I could!
Please, let’s help to preserve our picturesque small town.
I did research and a report on this house for the subsequent owner ( a local realtor) when we sold it in 1996. It has subsequently had a large addition. It does indeed have an interesting history - originally an outbuilding of the Sherwood House at 160 Hillspoint, it was apparently modified for human occupation in the early part of the 20th century, at a time when artists and others were coming to Westport for the summer. Oral tradition claims that it was a tea room for the tourists, perhaps operated by Edith Very Sherwood, who lived at 160 and was the Westport librarian. The next owners were Lila Duy, who lived on West 10th in NYC, and was a part time realtor in Westport, and Richard Seyffert, a portrait and landscape painter who began construction of the studio toward the rear of the property. Felice Holman Valen
(the author of over 20 childrens books, including Elisabeth and the Marsh Mystery and others clearly inspired by the nearby mill pond) and Herbert Valen (who worked in advertising and later as a “gag” writer for the New Yorker) owned the property from 1955 to the late 1980s, raising their daughter Nanine there.
This is such a pretty house with character. They will tear it down and put in a huge boxy shingle style clone of every other new construction house in Westport.