Look at this adorable, skinny pink house! It’s known as the Seely House and it’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Located in Mamaroneck, New York (25 miles north of New York City), it was recently up for sale so us curious house-peepers get to see inside!
First, some backstory on this one-of-a-kind house. It was built in 1932 by a man named Nathan T. Seely. He wasn’t trying to make a point (pun?) or spite his neighbors. Rather, his story is kind of a bittersweet one.
Seely and his brother created and owned one of New York’s first African American home-building business, successfully erecting many homes in the Mamaroneck area. The Seely’s business catered mostly to black Southerners who fled northward as part of the Great Migration.
History was not on the Seely’s side, however. The Great Depression of the 1930’s proved too devastating for the business to survive. The Seely business went bankrupt after the stock market crash of 1929 and Nathan Seely even lost his own home, a beautiful large house he built for his wife Lillian.
Left destitute, Nathan Seely had to rely on the kindness of humanity to see his young family though the tough times. His friend and neighbor Panfilo Santangelo rose to the occasion and offered Nathan a 12 1/2-foot-wide strip of land that ran between his two houses. To make the deal official, Seely paid Santangelo one dollar.
According to the listing description, “Mr. Seely used salvaged and recycled building materials including railroad ties, windows, banisters and even a chicken coop to incorporate into his house.”
Reportedly, Nathan tethered his newly built three-story structure to the ground with steel cables to protect it during high winds.
The result was a uniquely quirky home for Nathan’s family; small in stature, but big on love and ingenuity.
Here’s a side-angle view to give you more of a sense of the architecture:
Now have a look inside at how the interior appears today…
The home has two bedrooms and one bathroom in a mere 533 square feet, so it truly is a tiny home. The main living space is only 10 feet wide!
The house was listed for sale in June of 2019 for $275,000.
The kitchen has been remodeled, but you can still see many of the original vintage features including those adorable (albeit dangerous) tiny stairs…
The bathroom is super tight but functional:
Pictured below is the second story bedroom…
And this is the third level bedroom:
It’s so precious!
Nathan lived in this tiny home at 175 Grand Street with his family until he passed away in 1962. It stayed in the Seely family until 1988, when Santangelo’s daughter, Ida, bought the house and used it as a rental. As of the time of the listing, the home was still owned by the Santangelo family. At last check, the house is categorized as “pending” so it will soon be in the hands of someone new.
Whoever ends up with this amazing little piece of history is one lucky person. Hopefully they will care for it and maintain it with the dignity it deserves.
~ House Crazy Sarah