Learn the Fascinating History of the Stanton House Inn
How is the Stanton House Inn related to a brilliant man murdered in Madison Square Garden by the jealous husband of a previous lover?
Read on to learn all the details of:
the Stanton House Inn’s property
the illustrious people connected to its past
the very public murder that rocked early 1900s New York high society, and led to the Trial of the Century
You can read even more Greenwich history on our blog.
Early History of European Settlement of Greenwich
Greenwich and neighboring Stamford were founded in 1640. The area in which Stanton House Inn is located was not settled until 1672. What is now downtown Greenwich was originally called Horseneck due to the pastureland used by settlers to graze their horses. The area remained rural for much of its existence.
First Construction of the Seaman-Brush House
The Stanton House Inn was built on land granted to the Reverend Richard Sackett while he was Pastor of the Second Congregational Church in 1717. The family kept the land for 150 years, and in 1840, Mr. John Sackett built the original structure on its present location.
The Seaman-Brush house was originally in the neo-Federalist style, with a large central hallway and two large, symmetrical rooms on either side. You can still see the original layout most clearly in the Library and Living Room at the front of the House.
We named the Sackett Suite in honor of the Sackett family.
The Gay 90s and Early 20th Century in Greenwich, Connecticut
With the construction of the railroad, Greenwich changed its name from Horseneck to avoid sounding too provincial. It became a getaway for wealthy families from New York City, such as the Rockefellers.
Watch this video by the Greenwich Historical Society to learn about some of the major wealthy families that made their fortunes and built summer homes in Greenwich in the 1890s.
Mary A. (Sackette) Seaman and her husband Charles H. Seaman lived in what would become the Stanton House Inn until 1899. The house was then purchased by Edward & Susie A. Brush. At that time, the house was enlarged to its present size and appearance. The noted architect Stanford White, designer of the famous Washington Square Arch in New York City, was chosen to supervise the work.
The Brush family contributed much to the area and to the Town of Greenwich in particular. Some major Greenwich institutions, such as:
Brush Memorial Chapel
All felt the fine touch of Edward Brush.
“The Trial of the Century” and Stanford White
Shortly after the completion of the Seaman-Brush house (the official name of the Stanton House Inn), Stanford White was murdered by a very wealthy yet disturbed man in Madison Square Garden. Harry Kendall Thaw shot Stanford White at point-blank range for an affair with his then wife, Evelyn Nesbit. At the time of his death, the affair, which began when Nesbit was 16 years old and White was 47, had long-since ended.
The Stanton House Inn in the 20th Century
In 1920, after the death of Edward Brush, the property was purchased by Theodore L. Pomeroy. Mrs. Pomeroy was active both in politics and the church. Many prominent statesmen and their wives attended the social functions held by Mr. & Mrs. Pomeroy.
The Pomeroys lost their home after the Stock Market crash of 1929. It then sat empty for almost ten years, as the wealthy of the time already preferred to live in Backcountry Greenwich, rather than so close to town.
Nora Stanton Barney
In 1937, the house was purchased by Mrs. Nora Stanton Barney, who operated the house as first a veteran’s home, then an inn called Stanton House. She named the building in honor of her grandmother, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, the renowned American feminist and social reformer.
But Nora Stanton Barney was a fascinating woman in her own right. She was America’s first female civil engineer (despite being born in the United Kingdom), having graduated from Cornell. She was a civil engineer, architect, and real estate developer.
She even divorced her first husband because he wanted her to quit her work and become a typical housewife!
For the next quarter century, the Stanton House was a popular gathering spot for travelers and residents alike.
Recent History at the Stanton House Inn
Sadly, from 1962 to 1983 the property declined and it seemed that the Stanton House would not regain any of its original splendor.
The Seaman-Brush house became a boarding house. If no one in town would rent you a room, you could rent one here. Many locals who grew up in Greenwich during this time remember the Inn being a scary place.
But in 1985, Mr. Tog Pearson and his wife, Doreen, took an interest in the historic Connecticut inn and began to restore the rooms and facilities to their former glory. It has since become a well-needed addition to the community in the form of a Bed & Breakfast Inn.
The Pearson family set a goal for the Stanton House Inn over 30 years ago to provide a comfortable and relaxed home-away-from-home environment for their guests in a classic, historic and environmentally-friendly setting.
Greenwich’s prime location on beautiful Long Island Sound makes it the Gateway to New England. The perfect first stop for touring Still Revolutionary Connecticut, Greenwich also offers a convenient alternative for a visit to New York City. NYC to Greenwich, CT, is just thirty-five miles away and accessible by train or car. But there are also an abundance of great things to do in Greenwich itself, as well as the surrounding area.
Be sure to download our free Greenwich Activities checklist for a list of all our favorite activities near our historic Connecticut bed and breakfast.
Stanton House Inn welcomes you. View all our beautiful Greenwich accommodations and book your stay at our romantic bed and breakfast in Connecticut.
Historical research by:
Bill Finch, Jr.