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$899,000 Centerport home belonged to sea captain, owner says

This 1860 Centerport home features waterfront views.

This 1860 Centerport home features waterfront views. Photo Credit: Douglas Elliman Real Estate

An 1860 house in Centerport said by its owner to have once been owned by a sea captain is on the market for $899,000.

The original front of the house, which faces Centerport Harbor, became the back of the house when the road was moved to the opposite side of the home at the turn of the 20th century, says homeowner William Perks.

The Perks family, in addition to building an extension that added an attached garage and bedroom, enclosed the porch off what is now the rear of the home to create a 28-by-10.5-foot three-seasons room with water views. Below that is an open porch from which Perks says the family enjoys Fourth of July fireworks shows put on by the Crescent Beach Club in Bayville.

The two-bedroom, 2-1/2-bathroom Colonial, represented by Tim Cavanagh of Douglas Elliman Real Estate, is on a .18-acre lot and includes 58 feet of waterfront. Along the bulkhead is a rock wall that Perks says his father, Oran, created from rocks he collected while traveling.    `

“He took rocks from all over,” Perks says of his father, saying the roughly 25-foot-long wall includes finds from Arizona, Nova Scotia, his dad’s hometown in Illinois and many other locations.

Perks’ parents, who he says purchased the house in the 1940s, converted the home’s original kitchen, now at the front of the house, into a parlor with a bow window. A bedroom off the formal dining room became the current kitchen, which includes stainless steel appliances. The main level also includes the living room, an office and a full bathroom.

The finished walkout basement, with exposed brick and wood, features a speakeasy-style bar, wood stove and full bathroom. The room, Perks says, was his father’s man cave.

In a story about the house in 1982, Newsday reported that Oran and Bernice — a descendant of the Townsend family, one of the founding families of Oyster Bay — paid $6,800 for the house and preserved the traditions of the Victorian home. “Scores of visitors inspected the Perks home on a recent tour of notable, vintage houses conducted by the Greenlawn-Centerport Historical Society,” the story said.              

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