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Sagamore Hill

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Title: Sagamore Hill  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Theodore Roosevelt, Nassau County, New York, Joshua Slocum, Sagamore Hills, Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., Quentin Roosevelt, Lamb and Rich, Roosevelt family, Martha Bulloch Roosevelt, Ethel Roosevelt Derby
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Sagamore Hill

Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
Sagamore Hill
Sagamore Hill (house)
Location Cove Neck, New York

40°53′8″N 73°29′51″W / 40.88556°N 73.49750°W / 40.88556; -73.49750Coordinates: 40°53′8″N 73°29′51″W / 40.88556°N 73.49750°W / 40.88556; -73.49750

Area 83.02 acres (33.60 ha)
Built 1884
Architect Lamb & Rich; C. Grant LaForge
Architectural style Queen Anne
Visitation 38,009 (2005)
Governing body National Park Service
NRHP Reference # 66000096
Significant dates
Added to NRHP October 15, 1966[1]
Designated NHS July 25, 1962

Sagamore Hill was the home of the 26th President of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt, from 1885 until his death in 1919. It is located in the Incorporated Village of Cove Neck, New York, near Oyster Bay on the north shore of Long Island,[2] 25 miles (40 km) east of Manhattan. It is now the Sagamore Hill National Historic Site, which includes the Theodore Roosevelt Museum in a later building on the grounds.


Although a native of New York City, Theodore Roosevelt spent many summers of his youth on extended vacations with his family in the Oyster Bay area. In 1880, by then a young adult of 22, Roosevelt purchased 155 acres (62.7 hectares) of land for $30,000 (equal to $733,138 today) on Cove Neck, a small peninsula roughly 2 miles (3.2 km) northeast of the village of Oyster Bay. In 1881, his uncle James A. Roosevelt had designed his estate home several hundred feet west of the Sagamore Hill property. In 1884 Theodore Roosevelt hired the New York architectural firm Lamb & Rich to design a shingle-style, Queen Anne home for the property. The twenty-two room home was completed in 1886 for $16,975 (equal to $445,562 today), and Roosevelt moved into the house in 1887. Roosevelt originally planned to name the house "Leeholm" after his wife Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt. However, she died in 1884 and Roosevelt remarried in 1887, so he decided to change the name to "Sagamore Hill". Sagamore was the title of the head of an Indian tribe on Long Island. In 1905 Roosevelt decided to expand the house, adding the largest room, called the "North Room" (40x30), for $19,000 (equal to $498,715 today). The home now has twenty-three rooms.

The house and its surrounding farmland became the primary residence of Theodore and Edith Roosevelt for the rest of their lives. Sagamore Hill took on its greatest importance when it became known as the "Summer White House" during the seven summers (1902–1908) Roosevelt spent there as President. Roosevelt died at Sagamore Hill in January 1919.

National Historic Site

On July 25, 1962, Congress established Sagamore Hill National Historic Site to preserve the house as a unit of the National Park Service. As with all historic areas administered by the National Park Service, Sagamore Hill was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966.[3] The home is normally open to the public by guided tour, but is closed for renovation until 2015. Almost all the furnishings are original. Also on the site is the Theodore Roosevelt Museum, which chronicles the life and career of the President. The museum is housed in the 1938 house called "Old Orchard", the former residence of Brigadier General Theodore Roosevelt Jr. and his family.


As of 2013, the grounds are open for visitation seven days a week from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The visitors' center and museum are open Wednesday through Sunday and closed Mondays and Tuesdays.

On December 5, 2011, the house closed for a three year, $6.2 million renovation.[4] The visitors center, museum, and adjoining grounds remain open, and tours of the grounds are still conducted. As of October 2012, the expected reopening is in 2015.


External links

  • Historic American Building Survey
  • Sagamore Hill, Grey Cottage, Oyster Bay, Nassau, NY: 1 photo, 1 data page, and 1 photo caption page at Historic American Building Survey
  • Official NPS website: Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
  • Sagamore's Man of the House
  • Friends of Sagamore Hill
  • More info on Sagamore at the Theodore Roosevelt Organization's Web site
  • Youngs Memorial Cemetery
  • C-SPAN's American Presidents: Life Portraits

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