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S. Shore of Long Island Historical Driving Tour - Amagansett to Montauk Point
Item 1 of 9

The house at the corner of Main Street and Windmill Lane in Amagansett is home to a museum operated by the Amagansett Historical Society and known as Miss Amelia's Cottage. The museum explores life in colonial America and is located in a historic house built in 1725 by Jacob Schellinger that was moved about 200 feet in 1794. The museum includes artifacts from the Schellinger family while the home is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. There are two barns in the rear of the property one was built in 1982 and the other was moved here in that year but was constructed in 1850. The historic barn contains a collection of historic carriages that were built and/or used locally. In addition to this site, the historical society also operates the Roy Lester Carriage Museum.

1992 photo of Miss Amelia's Cottage for NRHP nomination, facing NE (Peter Shaver)

Building, Sky, Window, Plant

Plat of layout of Miss Amelia's Cottage (#1) land parcel on 1982 survey plat/updated 1990, from NRHP nomination (Shaver 1994)

Black, Slope, Font, Rectangle

Miss Amelia's cottage (arrow) on 1858 inset map of Amagansett (Smith)

Font, Parallel, Monochrome, Pattern

Rear (N) and E sides of Miss Amelia's Cottage in 1992 photo (Shaver)

Building, Plant, Sky, Property

Kitchen in Miss Amelia's Cottage in 1992 photo for NRHP nomination (E. Shank)

Table, Furniture, Property, Photograph

East parlor in Miss Amelia's Cottage, SE corner of first floor (E. Shank)

Building, Table, Couch, Furniture

The owner of the new cottage in the 1720s, Jacob Schellinger, was the third generation of Schellingers in the New World. The cottage was built on land that Abraham Schellinger bought in 1683, when Amagansett was first being settled. Jonathan Schellinger (1733-1814) moved the house around 1790. Jonathan's descendant, Mary Amelia Schellinger, lived in the house from her birth in 1841 up to 1929, a year before she died. "Miss Amelia" was the last of the Schellinger family to reside in the cottage. In 1860, Mary A. ("Amelia") shared the house with her father, Jonathan C. Shellinger, a 58-year-old farmer who owned $3,000 in real estate and $500 in personal property. A 16-year-old named Gilbert Babcock also lived in the house; neither of the teenagers attended school. The house was on a 19-acre lot by 1902, extending from Main Street northward to Town Lane. The north half of the lot was sold by 1916. Miss Amelia never married; she lived alone in the cottage in 1920, but a George Schellinger household was nearby on Main Street.

The property was subdivided in the twentieth century and was down to about 1.4 acres when sold by the Mulford family in 1963 to the IGA Grocery Company. The Amagansett Historical Society was formed when the cottage was going to be moved for construction of a grocery store; the society bought the cottage to save it in place in 1964. The cottage was open as part of a fundraising house tour in August 1965 of historic local homes; one thousand dollars was raised toward the restoration of the cottage. Valuable antiques were stolen from the house in 1975 but most was recovered. By the mid-1970s, memorial trees had been planted on the grounds to honor a number of people including James Tyson, Russell Woodward, and Richard Jackson.

The one-story Cape Cod style frame house had no running water or electricity until the mid-1920s. There is a center bay entrance on the south side and a large central chimney. The original floor plan has remained intact; the main entrance leads to a small entry hall that accesses two front parlors. A kitchen is in the middle of the north half of the cottage, with small rooms to either side. Two staircases lead to a garret with a finished room at the west end. A structural study of the cottage in 1988 by the Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities found some water damage to the house's wood. Ironically, the cottage was moved to this spot in 1794 because it was higher ground than the original spot; the house foundation used to be higher than Main Street but buildup of the road led to water draining toward the cottage. Highlights of the interior furnishings in the museum are clocks and furniture made by the local Dominy family (the same woodworkers who built and repaired local windmills). Pony rides are sometimes offered at the site for an additional fee.

Amagansett Historical Society. The Museums, Amagansett Historical Society. January 1st 2021. Accessed July 6th 2021.

Anonymous. "Four House Tours Raise Large Sums." East Hampton Star (East Hampton, N.Y.) September 2nd 1965. II sec, 5-5.

Anonymous. "'Miss Amelia Cottage' on a Postcard." East Hampton Star (East Hampton, N.Y.) March 17th 1966. II sec, 5-5.

Anonymous. "Museum Damage Found." East Hampton Star (East Hampton, N.Y.) October 6th 1988. II sec, 6-6.

Barnes, Sheila. "Amagansett." East Hampton Star (East Hampton, N.Y.) June 24th 1976. , 7-7.

Chase , Suzi Forbes. Explorer's Guide: The Hamptons. Woodstock, VT. Countryman Press, 2010.

Shaver, Peter. NRHP Nomination of Miss Amelia's Cottage. National Register. Washington, DC. National Park Service, 1994.

Silverman, Francine. Long Island Alive!. Edison, NJ. Hunter Publishing, Inc., 1982.

U.S. Census. Household of Jonathan C. Schellinger in Amagansett, N.Y., dwelling 490, family 564.. Washington, SC. U.S. Government, 1860.

U.S. Census. Household of Mary A. Schellinger in District 101, Amagansett, N.Y., dwelling 46, family 46.. Washington, SC. U.S. Government, 1920.

Image Sources(Click to expand)

New York State Cultural Resource Information Sysytem (NYS CRIS):


Library of Congress: