For those who aren’t sure whether they want a period interior dripping with Victorian-era-inspired wallpaper or one with white-walled sleekness, this extra wide Park Slope single-family offers a bit of both. The lower floors of 873 President Street are filled with original details, including mantels, wood floors and moldings, while the top floor has been renovated into a modern bedroom suite.
Located in the Park Slope Historic District, the house dates to 1878 and was designed by Stachlin & Steiger, according to the designation report. The red brick semi-detached house (along with its Romanesque Revival neighbor) stands out a bit amidst the primarily brownstone surroundings. One of the oldest houses on the block, it has a bit of Stick, or Eastlake, style with elongated wood brackets and decorative grillwork at the front gable. Those details would have originally included a side porch, still visible in the circa 1940 tax photo, but demolished in 1971 in favor of a parking space.
The earliest owners were Francis O. and Caroline Affeld, who, by the 1880 census, were living in the house with four children and two servants. Affeld, a German immigrant, was a Civil War vet and an insurance broker and occupied the townhouse until his death in 1939. Daughter Louise was the longest occupant. Described in the designation report as “a well-known resident of Park Slope,” she lived here from 1878 until her death in 1970. The house was sold by the family soon after.
Thanks to its 27 foot width, the house has two good-size spaces in the rear of each floor, giving it a roomier feel than the average city row house. And due to the 35-foot-wide lot, the house is also detached on one side, bringing in light from three exposures.
As noted, the interior of the single-family is awash in details on the lower floors, particularly the parlor level. Here the parlor and dining room are decked out in Bradbury & Bradbury wallpapers — the one in the parlor appears to be their “Anglo-Japanese ” paper, an appropriate Aesthetic Movement-inspired choice for the era of the house. There are also plaster ceiling medallions, wood floors with inlaid borders, pocket doors, an elaborately carved newel post in the entry and marble mantels.
Also on the parlor floor is a modern kitchen with wood cabinets, an island and a bright tile backsplash. This room also retains some historic features, such as wood floors with inlaid borders, a window seat and a working dumbwaiter.
Upstairs are four more bedrooms, one set up as a library, and a full bath. A rear-facing bedroom is decked out with more Bradbury & Bradbury wallpaper, this time “Woodland,” a William Morris-inspired design.
After the house changed hands in 2004, the top floor was renovated and turned into a bedroom suite with sitting area and bath with steam shower and soaking tub. Up here the vibe is all white walls and light wood, with a stretch of built-in storage. There is another mantel, making for five total in the house, but this one is a streamlined slab of stone surrounding a working fireplace.
Some original detail survives on the garden level, notably another mantel and moldings. Its three main rooms include a media room/office, playroom and bedroom. There is also a full bath and laundry room. The cellar has storage, a gym space and a temperature controlled wine room.
Recent upgrades include central air, plumbing and electrical, according to the listing.
The garden appears to have gotten some attention too: It is landscaped with a large patio, brick-edged lawn and planting beds. A side walkway running from the front yard to the rear allows access to the backyard without going through the house.
The home last sold in 2005 for $2,700,500. Now, after renovations to the kitchen, baths and top floor, it is listed for $6 million with Jackie Torren and Charlie Pigott of Corcoran. Think it will go fast?
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