An East Side farm gives way to lovely row houses

62ndstreettreadwell2Two centuries ago, a wealthy New Yorker named Adam Treadwell bought a 24-acre farm on Manhattan’s East Side, about where the East 60s are today.

When he died in 1852, his heirs inherited the property. Soon they began selling off small parcels to individual owners.

These new owners did something smart: they set up an agreement stipulating the height and width of the buildings they planned to put up, and they barred certain businesses from opening up there.

TreadwelldistrictTheir foresight leaves us with two breathtaking blocks mostly of four-story row houses built between 1868 to 1876, according to the document designating East 61st and 62nd Streets between Second and Third Avenues the Treadwell Farm Historic District.

The row houses were built in the French Second Empire and Italianate styles popular at the time.

“Today, the district is appreciated for the way it reveals the design aesthetic of the 1910s and 1920s,” explains the website for the Friends of the Treadwell Farm Historic District.


“During those years, most of the buildings were ‘modernized,’ i.e., stoops removed, and projecting detail stripped resulting in simplified elegance.”


There’s no river view or doormen standing by, but these two tree-lined blocks rank as among the loveliest in Manhattan, a tiny, little-known oasis of calm and beauty amid the crowds and traffic of East Midtown.

Take a peek inside one, recently for sale, via this Curbed listing. Price: just 7.9 million!

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7 Responses to “An East Side farm gives way to lovely row houses”

  1. Upstate Ellen Says:

    Wayyyyy out of my price range, but these are beautiful row houses!

  2. wendy Says:

    Wonder if this Treadwell was related to the Treadwell family that built and lived in The Old Merchant’s House in lower Manhattan (which still stands).

  3. wildnewyork Says:

    Yes, I forgot to add that! Seabury Treadwell, former owner of the beautiful Merchant’s House (now a museum) on East Fourth Street, was Adam Treadwell’s brother. He spelled the name Tredwell:

  4. Ricky Says:

    Maybe it’s just me, but I prefer my townhouse to be “old fashioned” and have a stoop.

  5. marylandis Says:

    I agree with Ricky. I would go even further and say that I lament the loss of the interior detail. Of course it’s so clean and nice and streamlined, but doesn’t it look a little out of place in this setting?

  6. petey Says:

    the name seems familiar … but apparently this treadwell is no relation:

  7. A Wild Winter Swan's NYC | JEAN HUETS Says:

    […] Laura lives with her grandparents at “Van Pruyn Place.” The locale is fictional, but all clues lead to Upper East Side. The center brownstone shown here looks the way I imagine Laura’s grandparents house to look, complete with garret. From her window she can see, across the street, “carved rooflines.” Photo via the fabulous blog Ephemeral New York […]

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