top of page

Halsey House & Garden

249 South Main Street, Southampton, NY 11968

Halsey House & Garden

When Southampton was settled by the English in 1640 they originally organized their homes near Old Town Pond but by the mid-1640s the Main Street we know today was established and home lots were allocated. Thomas Halsey Sr. (1592-1678) came to America from England in 1638 first landing in Lynn, Massachusetts. He along with some other residents of Lynn were the first Englishmen to step foot in what we today call Southampton.


Thomas Halsey Sr. was allotted a six-acre piece of property on what we refer to South Main Street and built a home for his family. Upon his death in 1678 his son Thomas Halsey Jr. inherited the property and sometime after the original house is said to have burned down due to the use of one recycled timber in the frame that is heavily charred. In his 1688 will, he states, “unto my wife Mary During the time of her widowhood the one halfe of my new house that I built….” The new house he references still stands today and with it being built sometime between 1678 and 1688 we settle on the construction date being c. 1683.

Captain Isaac Halsey, son of Thomas Halsey Jr., inherited the home from his father in 1689 and remodeled it sometime around 1730. Captain Isaac was the last Halsey to won this property for quite some time as the home would be sold to members of the Hallock family sometime around 1750 and then over the next 200 years be sold to and lived in by various families. By 1950 a man by the name of John Tillotson Wainwright III was the owner of the Halsey House then known as The Hollyhocks.

Thomas Halsey House ca. 1905, then known as "The Hollyhocks."

When Mr. Wainwright’s grandmother Anna R. Biddle died in 1956 he put the home up for sale. The Southampton History Museum, then known as the Southampton Colonial Society, was in a very active period at this time having just leased the Rogers Mansion from the Southampton Village to be used as their homebase and has just moved the Red Creek Schoolhouse and the Sayre Barn to the Rogers Mansion Property. The Colonial Society started a fundraising campaign and purchased The Hollyhocks on a 0.7 acre lot in May of 1958. A restoration committee comprised of William K. Dunwell (then president of the Society), Henry Francis duPont and R. Van der Woude hired architect Robert L. Raley to guide the restoration back to looking how the house may have looked in the late 1600s.

In 1999 another restoration project began to replace many of the shingles around the siding and roof of the Halsey House. By 2015 all of the windows in the home were also restored thanks to the generosity of the community donating to the cause. As of today there are plans currently in the works for another major restoration to take place to keep the house standing through the next few decades for all to enjoy.

Thomas Halsey House & Garden, formal garden at rear of house, 2018


For more indepth info on the building you can check out our

Historic Structure Report from 2014.

Halsey House Report 02.11.14
Download PDF • 11.68MB

bottom of page