William H. Seward House

The William H. Seward House (1801–1872) was the home of William H. Seward, who was a state senator, governor of New York, U.S. senator, presidential candidate, and then Secretary of State under presidents Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson. Among other notable accomplishments, he negotiated the 1867 purchase of Alaska, later known as "Seward's Folly", but ultimately a major triumph of statesmanship. Although he spent many years in Albany and Washington, D.C., he called this house his home from the time of his marriage in 1824 until his death.

The house was originally built by his father-in-law, Judge Elijah Miller, in 1816, then substantially modified by the Sewards in 1840, then again in 1866, to accommodate the diplomatic entertainments expected of his office. The original, 10-room, brick house was expanded to over 30 rooms and was occupied by blood relatives until 1951. The entire house remains furnished with extensive Seward-family collections.

The house was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1964.

Building Activity

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