If you’re unfamiliar with Grey Gardens, the iconic 1975 documentary, I can not recommend it more. A sort of fly on the wall look at an intensely reclusive mother and daughter living in their East Hampton mansion. And they’re cousins of Jackie O, to boot.
As those who have seen the film know, the home was in terrible disrepair and was home to several dozen cats and various varmints. Mother and daughter (Big Edie and Lil Edie Bouvier, respectively) soon realized they were unable to care for the home and in 1979, they sold the home to Sally Quinn and Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee. In the purchase agreement, the new owners were forbidden to raise the home, only restore it.
Town and Country reports:
Bradlee once reported finding 52 dead cats in the home after purchasing it, along with fixtures that were so rotted “you’d go into the living room, touch the wall, and it would move out 12 inches, as if it were on a hinge from the second floor.” Quinn recalled to the New York Times that, on an early walkthrough, she touched a key on a grand piano in the living room and it collapsed and fell through the floor.
Stop it. That last part did not happen. That’s from a cartoon. Good gravy.
Well here we are. Now the completely revised and renovated home can be yours!
7 Bedrooms, 6 Bath
6,000 sq ft
Built in 1897
Once owned by lunatics of the highest regard
Update – the whole documentary is on Youtube and it’s a favorite.