Southampton Sojourn

I LIKE SOUTHAMPTON. I hadn’t been there in 25 years till the other day, but now that I have, I’ve been back twice. Retail-wise, it’s pretty much a replica of East Hampton. Jobs Lane (now home of Diane von Furstenberg, Ralph Lauren, et al) goes back to 1640, when Southampton was first settled, which is pretty impressive.


It also has the Parrish Art Museum, above, which I’m saving for winter. And an old-fashioned department store called Hildreth’s, still in its 1842 location with interior cast iron columns, full of useful, tasteful, sweet-smelling things. Haven’t seen anything like it outside of London.

There’s a major building restoration going on next to the First Presbyterian Church at South Main Street and Meeting House Lane. Last year, the 1843 church and its clock tower were stripped of paint for the first time in a century and repainted.


Now it’s the turn of the building next door, above, a c.1825 bay-windowed mansion once the minister’s home, but since the early 1980s, split into rental apartments.

So far, they’ve stripped off the vinyl siding (horrors!) to reveal the original pine planks underneath, which were set at an angle to overlap each other and nailed to studs with no sheathing. The pine will be covered with a penetrating white stain and the house insulated.

It’s also getting a new foundation; the back half of the house never had a foundation at all. Right now, the house is raised several feet above the ground and those who are interested can peek underneath, with no fence or security to stop them.


Above, the former Rogers Memorial Library, now an annex to the Parrish Art Museum — an outstanding Arts and Crafts building. Love the cloud-pruned yews and junipers.

If it’s Friday, it must be time for the Hooked on Houses blog party!

About cara

I blog (for fun) here at casaCARA, and write (for money) about architecture, interiors, gardens and travel for many national magazines and websites.
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1 Response to Southampton Sojourn

  1. Terry Kearns says:

    I like the cloud pruning. I don’t think I ever seen it in person.

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