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We know we’re not alone when we say this cold winter weather has us daydreaming of leisurely summer days spent on Shelter Island. To help transport us there, we’re featuring a short run of Dream Home properties all set on the island commonly known to locals as “The Rock.” 

To kick off the Shelter Island set, we bring you one of the East End’s most notable historical estates, enter “Kemah.”

“‘Kemah’, which means ‘in the face of the wind’ is truly a legacy property with an incredible story dating back to the infancy of the East End,” said listing agent Penelope Moore of Saunders & Associates. “Native Americans here treasured the spring water that came from the lake, the elevations and the vegetation offered a sort of apothecary back then. There have only been two owners, including a patriot who lived there before and during the Revolutionary War, and a Renaissance man, J.D. Robb, whose family still owns and lives at the estate.”

Set along the southern tip of Shelter Island, and located close to Wades Beach, Kemah features stunning pastoral, undisturbed views and a diverse landscape on nearly 23 acres of land. The property includes a meadow that extends nearly six acres to the beach on one side, 17.35 acres around the home, a glacial lake, a fieldstone barn and a larger two-story barn, and a “chicken coop” that was converted into a music studio where Robb composed music.

The original Pre-Revolutionary War colonial was built in 1750 and the 1,600-square-foot barn with second-floor loft space was built in 1886. 

The main house has six bedrooms, two full baths, two half baths, two butler’s pantries, an incredible screened-in porch with water views, a dramatic third-floor attic which has double-height ceilings, and tons of original, preserved details like interior staircases, a hand stacked stone landing outside the double door entryway and hand-blown glass over the doorway.

The property and its structures are a portal to the past. While a buyer could add to the existing home, convert the barn into a guest house, they could also simply leave everything as it is.

“Beyond the visual appeal, there are well thought out characteristics. This includes exposed structural beams seasoned in seawater for a year and then used for the kitchen ceiling; a chimney made from bricks from the ballast of a ship; original mortise locksets; a vintage hearth with brick and carved mantle; hand-blown glass windowpanes; and a fieldstone “Captain’s chair” under the flagpole in the front yard overlooking the bay,” added Moore.

There is no other property like it on the market. 

“It is simply lyrical,” Moore concluded. 

It is listed at $14,995,000.

See the complete listing here