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A Photographer’s Abandoned Castle in the Woods

July 22, 2015
Nikon D90, 18-200 lens Edited in LR and Perfect Effects

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens
Edited in LR and Perfect Effects

This is what is left of what used to be known as the Sanford Castle and later Hearthstone Castle. It was constructed in 1897 for E. Starr Sanford. Partnering with Charles H. Davis, they formed the Davis & Sanford portrait studio on Fifth Avenue in New York City in 1892. More information, including some of their work, can be found here.  They became very famous and had clients such as the Astors and Vanderbilts.

Sanford built this castle in Danbury, CT.  He enjoyed the home for only five years, retiring in 1901 and selling the property in 1902. The castle was owned by New York financier Victor Buck until 1918, when the park was sold to Charles Darling Parks, who owned the adjacent Tarrywile Mansion. Parks gave the property to his oldest daughter Irene as a wedding present. It was renamed Hearthstone Castle, the name it goes by today. She occupied the castle until 1983, with her heirs owning it until 1985. Apparently it showed signs of disrepair at that time, but it is remarkable (and quite sad) how badly it has deteriorated in 30 years.  It is now owned by the City of Danbury as part of a property that includes the Tarrywile mansion.

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens Edited in LR

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens
Edited in LR

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens Edited in LR

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens
Edited in LR

The Tarrywile mansion has not shared the same fate:

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens Edited in LR

Nikon D90, 18-200 lens
Edited in LR

Both properties are part of the same park, which includes gardens and nature trails in addition to the homes. The Tarrywile mansion is open for weddings and other events, while the Hearthstone castle awaits the implementation (and money, I suspect) of the planned renovation work.

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From → Photography

One Comment
  1. Would love to wander around the castle, mansion and their gardens.

    Like

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