Kellogg House eligible for National Register

Historical photo of the Kellogg House in Baldwin, Historical photo of the Kellogg House in Baldwin, built in 1900 at the behest of a Civil War veteran named George Sumner Kellogg. Photo Credit: Baldwin Historical Society

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A century-old Baldwin house in danger of possibly being moved has been found by the New York State Historic Preservation Office to be eligible for the National Register program.

Members of the Baldwin Historical Society received the good news last week, after filing an application for landmark status for the 113-year-old Kellogg House on Merrick Road and Harrison Avenue.

"The Kellogg House achieved National Register eligibility because of its association to design [architecture]," Randy Simons, spokesman for the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, said in an email. Nassau County, which owns the Queen Anne-style home and had planned to demolish it to make room for a new First Precinct police station, instead might relocate it to another spot on the site or to another county-owned property in the area for an undetermined cost, officials said.

"This does not guarantee preservation of the building, but does put the pressure on the county and proves that the historical society's efforts are not unfounded and are supported by a larger political entity," said architectural designer, historian and historical society member Arthur T. Rollin. "The process of landmarking is much more time-consuming and something we are still actively considering."

The green-and-white-shingled house with a wraparound porch was built in 1900 at the behest of Civil War veteran George Sumner Kellogg. It housed several military veterans from various wars from the Kellogg and other families for more than three generations. The building also was an antiques store from 1982 until it was sold to the county in 2011 for $1 million.

County officials met with historical society members on June 2 and offered to move the house on a county-owned site on Merrick Road and Milburn Pond, but historical society members complained it is the middle of a flood zone, Rollin said.

"The County is actively discussing this issue with the Baldwin Historical Society and did not make a formal proposal as several options are under consideration," Brian Nevin, Nassau Executive Edward P. Mangano's spokesman, said in an email. "This was just one option offered at an initial meeting . . . Another option is to leave it on the current property and other options are also being explored."

Eligibility or listing on the National Register offers some protection under federal and state historic preservation laws, but it does not prohibit the property owner from making changes, selling or demolishing a property, according to the state's letter to the society.

"We are holding currently to the original idea of the Kellogg House staying in its existing context since we would be forced to give up any potential landmark protections and financial benefits if it were moved," Rollin said. "Certainly, we'd want the house saved -- so if all other options fail, we'd have to consider the move."

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