House of the Week: Pleasantville Historic Gem, Step Up Your Curb Appeal, Make Your Home Emergency-Ready

House of the Week: Pleasantville Historic Gem


Annual property taxes: $14,213

19 Stillman Ln, Pleasantville

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This historic gem just came on the market days ago—a three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath converted sheep barn, one of a few remaining vestiges on the James A. Stillman country estate—the same James A. Stillman (legendary banker, founder of Citibank, and friend to John D. Rockefeller, Jr.) estate where architect Cass Gilbert, Jr., later lived and which he named “The Fold.” As luck would have it, the current owner, Pat Jones, an architect herself, was able not only to envision, but to orchestrate its most recent renovation—adding substantial storage, replacing windows, refinishing the oak floors, and opening the interior to give a more spacious, light, and airy feel. Thanks to Robert Welsch, owner of Westover Landscape Design, the lush landscaping of the property’s nearly two-acre rolling grounds has been fine-tuned with a facelift. “The English Cotswold style of architecture—with trademark eyelid windows and thatched shingle roof—transports you to another era,” says listing agent Judith Mella. “The magnificent gardens and patios—accessible from every room—and the wall-to-wall southern windows fill the home with sunshine and create a close connection with nature. It just makes you feel happy!” Built in 1904 by Harrie T. Lindeberg of the Albro & Lindeberg architectural firm as part of the extensive estate commissioned by Stillman for his eldest son, the distinctive white and black English Cotswold exterior style can be spotted in other nearby homes (also now independently owned) that had been part of the Stillman estate bordering the Rockefeller State Park and trails. Other distinctive features include an outdoor stone fireplace, gunite black-bottom pool with outdoor shower, vegetable garden, and multiple terraces with three defined areas for outdoor dining and entertaining. Also included: a matching one-bedroom, one-bath shepherd’s cottage (not guest house) with a high-capacity wine cellar; an 1810 cabin; and a detached two-car garage. “It’s very special—its own little enclave with outbuildings,” says owner Pat Jones. “It’s a magical place to live.” For more information, contact Douglas Elliman listing agent Judith Mella at (914) 400-4551 or visit            


Step Up Your Curb Appeal: Top 10 Tips

Photo by Karen Bussolini

Landscaping by Westover Landscape Design

Is your house market-ready inside and out? Robert Welsch shares the tried-and-true tips he applied in clearing, reorganizing, and enhancing the 19 Stillman Lane property, including soon-to-bloom spring and summer plantings.

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1) Keep it Simple: Similar to staging a home’s interior, keep the outside simple and free of visual clutter. Judiciously edit overgrown shrubs and spindly plants that are past their prime and replace with a simpler, more unified planting scheme.

2) Weed and Prune: Cut back and reshape trees and shrubs and weed garden beds, terraces, and driveways. Cut crisp, new garden beds and add fresh mulch to planting beds and around trees.

3) Spruce it Up: Clean all windows, shutters, gutters, eaves, and siding; power-wash decks, walkways, and driveways.

4) Paint: Add a fresh coat of paint to the house and trim—don’t forget to stain or paint fences, sheds, and decks.

5) Make it Safe: Repair damaged steps, walkways, patios, decks, and driveways—the last thing you want is an unsafe experience for a potential buyer.

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6) Cut the Clutter: Put away or give away any miss-matched or broken outdoor furniture, sheds, storage units, pots, containers, hoses, tools, or compost. Repair or replace broken fences, windows, or screens.

7) Add a Splash of Color: Strategically place simple container plantings with colorful flowers at the front door and in window boxes—keep them watered, pruned, and looking lush for every open house.

8) Update House Numbers: Make sure the address and a clear path to the front door are clearly visible from the street.

9) Invest in a Lush Lawn: A fresh, well-cared-for lawn is inviting and appealing to a potential buyer. For smaller lawns, consider new sod.

10) Bring in a Pro: If your hands are full or you don’t have a clue where to start, a trained landscape professional can come to your rescue and tackle these tasks and more to help put your home a step above others on the market.

For more information and tips, contact Robert Welsch of Westover Landscape Design, Inc., at (914) 755-1013 or visit


Make Your Home Emergency Ready

Did you take a beating in the last brutal storm? Some impacts may be out of your control, but don’t let losing power be one of them. The next information session sponsored by Mamaroneck-based Murphy Brothers Contracting, Inc., can help homeowners and contractors decide if an emergency generator is a practical option. Michael Liebler, of Power Performance Industries, will lead the presentation “Specifying Emergency Generators for your Residential Projects” at 2:30 pm on Wednesday, April 25, at Murphy Brothers (416 Waverly Ave, Mamaroneck). A range of topics will be covered, including who should have a generator, the ideal size and location of units, factory code compliance, a technical overview, and basic service knowledge. Space is limited—call (914) 777-5777 or e-mail to reserve your spot.

We welcome information about fascinating homes on the market or real estate/home-related news and events—send to Karen Odom at

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