Sunset Hill, a circa-1883 Queen Anne Victorian in Shelter Island Heights that served as the summer residence of former New York Governor Hugh Carey from 1975 to 1982, is on the market for $8.875 million.
Perched atop a 1.87-acre parcel, the seven-bedroom, eight-bath residence was built by Richard Salter Storrs, a minister at the Church of the Pilgrims in Brooklyn, where President Abraham Lincoln maintained a pew, according to historians. Storrs spoke on behalf of Lincoln and delivered the convocation at the May 24, 1883 opening of the Brooklyn Bridge.
Since 2009, owner Jenny Carragher has added new windows, restored floorboards and millwork, updated the bathrooms, installed a new kitchen, regraded the backyard and added central HVAC. The home also was reshingled and received a new roof.
“We pulled it down to the studs, but kept the original footprint,” she says.
A new walkout lower level — one of four finished floors of living space — has a media room, billiards room, bar and lounge, 1 1⁄2 baths and a bedroom.
“That used to be a summer kitchen,” says listing agent Penelope Moore, of Saunders & Associates. “They lifted up the entire structure, dug out the lower level to expand it, poured a new foundation and put the house back on it.”
A foyer has two seating areas, a fireplace and views through the home to the water. An adjacent library has a fireplace and full bath. Waterfront living and dining rooms open through French doors to a veranda along the Long Island Sound. The kitchen has a center island, granite surfaces, a breakfast area and water views all around.
Intricately carved stairs lead to three guest bedrooms on the second floor. The window-lined master suite includes a sitting area, one of three original fireplaces, a waterfront deck and an en-suite bath with a soaking tub and shower.
The third floor has high ceilings, two bedrooms and a full bath, as well as built-in window seats with views of the beach and the Orient ferry; on a clear day, there are Connecticut views, Moore says.
The backyard includes an in-ground gunite pool and a brick patio. Stairs lead to a path through sea grasses and past an osprey nest to a 200-foot private sandy beach.