Lispenard-Rodman-Davenport House

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Lispenard-Rodman-Davenport House
The Lispenard-Rodman-Davenport House in New Rochelle, New York a historic residence dating back to the early 18th century. The house is the oldest residential structure in New Rochelle. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1986. In 1708 Antoine Lispenard bought from Jacob Leisler's son a half interest in the peninsula, or neck, between New Rochelle Creek and Long Island Sound. Six years later he bought the other half. Across the inlet he built a dam and a tidal gristmill. Each incoming tide filled a millpond behind the dam, and then, as the tide ebbed, the water was released through a millrace to turn the mill wheel. Nearby the mill, on the neck itself, Lispenard built his home, a stone house of one-and-a-half stories, with the front eaves extending to form the roof of a wide porch. In 1732 he sold his property to Joseph Rodman who later doubled the size of the house. By 1776 the house and Neck had passed to John R. Myers who owned it for the duration of the Revolutionary War. During this brief period the house was used by the British as a hospital for their wounded soldiers. In 1784 the property came into the possession of the Davenport family, and so is currently known as Davenport's Neck. Generations of the Davenport family, and other owners after them made further changes to the house, so that the original structure built by Antoine Lispenard and Joseph Rodman is largely invisible. In the 1860s, the original roof was replaced by a modified mansard, topped by a cupola. Restoration by the late Louis Ferguson managed to reveal and preserve several elements of the original structure such as the hand-hewn beams of its frame and the lime mortar made from local oyster shells, used to cement its stone wall. Other features of the house include 20-inch-thick (510 mm) walls, 16-inch-wide (410 mm) pine floorboards and a 5 + 1 â„ 2-foot-wide (1.7 m) fireplace in the kitchen. Several Lispenard family grave-sites are also located on the property.