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home of Theodore Roosevelt
In 1880, Theodore Roosevelt purchased 155 acres of land for $30,000 on Cove Neck, a small peninsula roughly 2 miles northeast of the village of Oyster Bay, New York. He subsequently resold some of the land to relatives but kept 95 acres for himself, on which he intended to build a home for himself and new wife Alice Hathaway Lee. With New York City architects Lamb & Rich, the couple designed Leeholm, a large, rambling Queen Anne style house that would hold the many children they hoped to have. Alice died in childbirth on February 14, 1884, but Theodore decided to proceed with construction because of his infant daughter. He changed the name from Leeholm to Sagamore Hill, for the Native American chief Sagamore Mohannis who had lived there in the seventeenth century. On March 1, 1884, Roosevelt contracted with Long Island builder John A. Wood to begin the work, which was completed in 1885. The following year Theodore Roosevelt married Edith Kermit Carow. After their honeymoon, they moved into Sagamore Hill with three-year-old Alice and began their own family.
Sagamore Hill is a 3-floor, 23-room Queen Anne-style house. The first floor contains the large center hall, library, dining room, kitchen, and drawing room. The house is surrounded by a spacious raised porch shaded by an unmistakable green awning. The second floor contains the bedrooms, nursery, guest rooms, and a turn of the century water closet with a uniquely large porcelain tub (a luxury in those days). The third floor was where the servants' quarters were located.
Sagamore Hill was designated as a National Historic Site on July 25, 1962, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966.
Robinson Library >> Theodore Roosevelt
This page was last updated on June 29, 2018.