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Long Island’s ‘baseball house’ lists for $549,000

The 1.5-acre Lake Grove property was once a

The 1.5-acre Lake Grove property was once a farm, its owner says. Credit: Douglas Elliman Real Estate / Andy Limjoco

This 1875 Colonial in Lake Grove was home — or better yet, “home field” — for the Hawkins family. Six brothers from the family were once part of a local baseball team founded in the early 1900s that was known as the “Hawkins Nine.”

The house, on Hawkins Avenue, has been in the family for four generations and is now the market for the first time, says the listing agent. Listed for $549,000, the six-bedroom, 2-1/2 bathroom house includes many original features, including the front porch, outhouse and milk house.

“It’s always been in the family,” says Kathy Whittier, who lived in the house with her parents and siblings until she got married in 1985. Now living in Chicago, Whittier says she visits the house at least three or four times a year. “It was purchased by my great grandparents. Then in 1963, my parents bought it from my mother’s grandmother for $6,600.”

In a 1942 story reflecting on the Hawkins Nine, the Long Island Forum reported “among Long Island’s fastest village baseball teams was that of little Ronkonkoma. It was known from one end of the island to the other, not alone for its skill, but because six of its nine players were brothers — the Hawkins boys.”

The 1.5-acre property was once a farm before being subdivided, Whittier says.

“My parents bought the house and as much property as they could afford at the time,” adds Whittier, who says that her great-grandfather on her mother’s side was a Hawkins.

The main level of the house — which features pocket doors, wide-plank hardwood flooring and custom shelving and molding — includes a parlor, living room, eat-in kitchen, den with a fireplace, sunroom and professional office that was once used as a dentist office.

“The office is another large room similar to the parlor,” says listing agent Tina Vespoli of Douglas Elliman Real Estate. “It can easily be opened up to a formal living room or den.”

The upper level, which includes a Juliette balcony, features all six bedrooms and a full bathroom.

The house also includes a granny attic and a basement with a rounded cellar, which Whittier was told as a child was originally designed in that fashion so ghosts and witches couldn’t hide in the corners.

The property, with taxes of $7,253, has an in-ground pool, pool house and detached two-car garage. Still standing is the home’s original milk house, which includes a cellar beneath the floorboard slats that was used to store milk before refrigeration.

“As kids we used to play house and school inside of the milk house,” says Whittier, who adds that the structure is currently being used for storage. “It’s about four-by-four-feet and has windows that open. We’d play hot dog stand, all sorts of stuff.”

Memories of that nature, and the fact that the house has been in the family for so long, have made the decision to sell the Hawkins family home an emotional one.

“It’s tearing me up,” Whittier says. “Even when you know it’s inevitable, it’s still hard. But it’s time.”

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