Elise & Joseph Wallace House:
This unique house was one of the first homes built in Wincoma on the former property of the August Heckscher estate. It was built as a country house by a Brooklyn family who already owned two houses in Huntington Bay and had been members of the same social circle with Heckscher. Julius Lehrenkrauss Jr., the then head of the financial firm known as the “House of Lehrenkrauss,” had inherited the firm from his father. In 1912, Julius had built a large Mediterranean style house on Bay Avenue (HHS Garden Tour 2015) and in the mid-1920s, a stone “castle” for his son Lester next door (HHS House Tour 2012). Julius built this house for his younger sister Elise and her second husband Joseph M. Wallace. Wallace was a mural painter by trade and an admirer of N.C. Wyeth, who in 1928 had just published his illustration the Romance of Discovery pictured below. Wallace recreated the Wyeth mural on the two story 45’ long wall in the great room, which with some restoration, survives 88 years later. He also painted several other Wyeth inspired illustrations on the second floor. Wallace became a member of the Huntington Chamber of Commerce and opened up a store on New York Avenue. The Lehrenkrauss firm suffered greatly from mismanagement and by 1938 all of the Huntington properties were sold and the family returned to Brooklyn.
The current owner, an interior designer by trade, bought the house in 1982 and continues to use it as a country home. The house recently underwent a major restoration which included repairing the historic house, modernizing the kitchen and finishing the lower level. The home continues to be an example of the grand summer country homes that were built in Huntington Bay in the early part of the 20th century, where wealthy New York families would come to play and relax.