Woolworth Estate in Glen Cove, Long Island
|Location||77 Crescent Beach Rd., Glen Cove, New York|
|Area||16 acres (6.5 ha)|
|Architect||Gilbert, Charles P.H.|
|Architectural style||Late 19th And 20th Century Revivals, Italian Renaissance|
|NRHP Reference #||79001593|
|Added to NRHP||May 17, 1979|
Woolworth Estate is a historic estate located at Glen Cove in Nassau County, New York. It was designed in 1916 by noted architect C. P. H. Gilbert (1861–1952) for Frank Winfield Woolworth (1852–1919). The estate consists of the main residence, known as Winfield Hall; a large garage with remodeled living quarters; a main entrance arch; two greenhouses; and various landscape features including a tea house.
When his current home was destroyed by a mysterious fire, Woolworth immediately went to work on building Winfield Hall, the plans for which, serendipitously, were already drawn. With walls and pillars of marble, the house ended up costing nine million dollars, the grand staircase alone costing two million dollars.
The house is an Italian Renaissance style, marble covered residence with a five bay wide central mass and flanking four bay wide wings. It features a one bay central entrance portico and flat roof. After the Woolworths moved on, the house sat empty for years, and was eventually purchased in 1929 by the wife of Richard S. Reynolds, of the R.S. Reynolds Metal Company fame. After her tenure, the house became the Grace Downs Academy, a business school for young ladies, then was purchased by Martin Carey, brother to former Governor Hugh Carey of New York.
Part of the home was heavily damaged by fire on January 28, 2015.
Reported paranormal activities
Winfield Hall, like many other Long Island Mansions, has a rather ominous history of being haunted. It is said that on the evening of May 2, 1917, as Edna Woolworth Hutton, Franklin Woolworth's middle daughter, took her own life at The Plaza Hotel New York City, while her father, Franklin, was at Winfield Hall hosting a party, a somewhat bizarre and unexplained incident occurred. Located above Winfield Hall's main entrance fireplace, the marble Family Crest, containing the painted faces of his three daughters, acquired a crack through the face of Edna, leaving the two remaining faces, as well as the rest of the crest, untouched. A lightning bolt, the product of a severe thunderstorm, has been attributed in causing this crack. Shortly thereafter, stories of hearing strange noises in Winfield Hall, as well as reported observations of seeing a floating "spirit" wandering through the halls, began to circulate. Later on when Winfield Hall was being used as a business school for women, there were numerous reports of hearing a woman crying in the locked "Marie Antoinette" room, rumored to be the room that Edna had committed suicide, though her obituary states her death occurred elsewhere. Other people have reported hearing organ music playing on its own, while detailed descriptions of seeing what appears to be the ghost of a young woman "haunting" the gardens have also been noted.
In popular culture
The mansion was also used in the music video "Cookie" by recording artist R. Kelly.
- Staff (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- Ellen Rosebrock and Austin N. O'Brien (January 1979). "National Register of Historic Places Registration: Woolworth Estate". New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Retrieved November 20, 2010. See also: "Accompanying 15 photos".
- Hauck, D.W. (2002). Haunted Places: The National Directory : Ghostly Abodes, Sacred Sites, UFO Landings, and Other Supernatural Locations. Penguin Books. p. 295. ISBN 9780142002346. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
- "Haunted Long Island: Winfield Estate | The Witching Hour". 4girlsandaghost.wordpress.com. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
- "Winfield Hall | True ghost stories, folklore & mysteries". tatteberry.wordpress.com. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
- "Winfield - Long Island Mansions Guide". limansionsguide.webs.com. Retrieved April 8, 2015.
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