Wednesday, May 2, 2012

'The Folly'

 'The Folly', the George Bullock estate designed by Renwick, Aspinwall & Owen c. 1899 on Centre Island.  This was the second house Bullock had named 'The Folly', the first one (designed by Stickney & Austin c. 1892) burned in 1899.  Bullock was chairman of the board of Erie Railways Co. and president of International Burners Corporation.  He served as mayor of the Village of Centre Island from 1930 until his death in 1932.  The residence was demolished in the mid 1950s.  Click HERE for more on 'The Folly'.




Photos from Architecture, 1900.

18 comments:

The Ancient said...

I suppose the temptation to exploit the views explains that five-sided, two story extension on the back of the house.

Note the placement of the elevator -- far away from the principal rooms.

archibuff said...

That 5 sided deep bay window in the dining room is a grewat auxiliary nook and definitely took advantage of the views. Great chimneys, timber gables, quirky bays and porches make for an interesting exterior. Wonderful dining room ceiling and loads of panelled walls and dark woodwork throughout. Very liveable home with sensible floor plans. Too bad it did not survive.

magnus said...

The idea of a house named "The Folly" burning to the ground strikes my funny bone.

And I love the occupations of some of these turn of the last century plutocrats- and the very straightforward names of the corporations they headed: The International Burners Corp". And I bet it was.

The Ancient said...

From the NYT:

http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive/pdf?res=F60913F63F5513738DDDA80B94DD405B828FF1D3

(Bullock's obit.)

The Ancient said...

From the Cornell Alumni News, July 1929:

"George Bullock is president of the
International Burners Corporation of
New York. The company from 1922 to
1928 was known as the Caloroil Burner
Corporation, of which Mr. Bullock was
president. He was also for some years
until 1925 president of the United Gas
and Electric Corporation of New York.
He is serving his second term as vicepresident of the American Lil Burner Association."


http://www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/digital/collections/cul/texts/ldpd_7031148_051/pages/ldpd_7031148_051_00001501.html

(Says Bullock sold The Folly and 20 acres in 1913 for $175,000.)

Zach said...

Which makes sense as in 1914 Bullock had Robert Williams Gibson design 'Yeadon', also on Centre Island. The house was demolished c. 1990.

magnus said...

Hmmm..."American Lil Burner Association"? Was the Lil a diminutive for Little? Although improbable, I like the idea so I'll go with it.

Security words of the day: Ionsiom Oplem- "The late Magnus was a founder of the Ionsiom Oplem Corporation of Bugtustle, North Dakota, the Nation's leading manufacturer of Ion infused flypaper"

Zach said...

Yeadon:

http://wikimapia.org/#lat=40.8908394&lon=-73.5229111&z=16&l=0&m=b&show=/4075021/Yeadon-Hearthstone-Middlesea

archibuff said...

Yeadon now Middlesea......Billy Joel's home

The Down East Dilettante said...

Magnus, you have hit the Dilettante's funny bone.

Ancient, yes, but did the elevator go to the top? Lately I've been noticing that so many do not.

Doug Floor Plan said...

The interior woodwork in ‘The Folly’ is beautiful & the floor plan is really good. Yes, I noted the elevator was deep in the service wing on the ground floor & then conveniently appears at the end of the hall on the second floor, made possible because there are no servants’ bedrooms on the second floor. I doubt this elevator went to the third floor because I'm guessing it was just [just?] servants up there. & this house knew how to take advantage of a breeze in its perched location – even the kitchen & servants’ hall each have windows on three walls. I read the living room measured 20 feet by 34 feet. I like the arrangement of the master suite (over the living room) & if you enlarge the floor plan enough it appears there are pocket doors at the top of those three steps up to the master suite, making it possible to make access to the master suite disappear (which I really like … but that’s just me). I agree it’s a shame this house didn’t survive.

I don’t care much for the exterior look of the house & to me those double pointed gables always look like an invitation for a leak, as does having that chimney block the flow of water down the joint in the roof.

magnus said...

DFP- you must, like me, have spent some time as the owner/caretaker (hostage?) of an old house with a leaky roof. It has given me a reflexive cringe when I see flat rooves, double gables or such ice dam (I tell the roofer that I'm sure it's "ice damn") inducing impediments as that oddly placed chimney.

Doug Floor Plan said...

Magnus, I’m sure the house I lived in (not on LI) is not nearly as nice as your house; but yes, as I have said here before – I once lived in a historic house, but I don’t live in one now, & I intend to never live in one again.

I should have said above that I think only servants' bedroom, & probably storage, are on the third floor because the main stairs do not go above the second floor.

archibuff said...

I always thought once an historic home owner, always an historic home owner?

I own a 1903 money pit, lol and couldnt imagine living in anything built of recent vintage and more importantly recent quality.

Also unlike todays homeowners reality I am sure ice dams and leaks were the responsibility of some on-site estate maintenance/handy man and never troubled the owners with one second of worry.

The Down East Dilettante said...

I own an 1814 money pit, charming, but..., and believe me, new cheap sheetrock construction, insulated windows and a real laundry room are looking pretty attractive to me...

archibuff said...

Et Tu DED? Et Tu?

Oh no.

The Down East Dilettante said...

Oui, moi aussi.

The floor plan is interesting---it goes against the norm of main block with three floors of owner's rooms, and puts the main bedrooms into the service wing in favor of a third floor of servant's rooms. All connected by a relentlessly long narrow hall.

Glen said...

To Doug Floor Plan's comments about the master suite I would add the progressive minded presence of double sinks in the master bathroom and extremely generous closets. In fact, all but the smallest bedroom had very generous closets, some even with windows. I really like this floor plan, in spite of the long second floor hallway. Hopefully, the elevator doors were an artful terminus. Otherwise an elevator would not be my aesthetic choice for the end of any circulation path. The exterior is handsome, if unremarkable. One comment on the ownership of an older home. I left my older english tudor eight years ago after restoring it top to bottom including a "correct" exterior color scheme. The current owner recently changed the exterior to a ghastly and very incorrect color scheme. I am suffering great offense at their extreme lack of taste and understanding of their role as steward and caretaker. Don't ever leave your old house unless you are prepared to suffer such blows.