Second Empire – Schodack Landing, NY

Added to OHD on 1/4/17   -   Last OHD Update: 4/12/20   -   34 Comments
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591 River Rd, Schodack Landing, NY 12156

  • $325,000
  • 6000 Sq Ft
  • 0.6 Ac.
The Captain Schermerhorn House is a solidly built brick river mansion in a rare unrestored state. A grand sweeping staircase connects the original basement kitchen all the way up to the fourth floor full-height attic. Wide board floors and plank walls as well as later french doors remain intact and untouched. Typical of the Hudson River Federal Style, the house faces the Hudson River and was designed to impress passing ships with its grand Palladian Window and 5-bay facade. Sited high on a bluff directly overlooking the Hudson River with unobstructed western views that include The Catskill Mountains and an active Bald Eagles nest.
Contact Information
James Male, HOUSE Hudson Valley Realty,
(518) 828-5154

State: | Region: | Associated Styles or Type:
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34 Comments on Second Empire – Schodack Landing, NY

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  1. Graham says: 146 comments

    Could be a great one. Not quite what I was expecting to see for an “unrestored” house on the inside 🙂

  2. Ross says: 2472 comments

    Somebody went to a great deal of effort…to remove the soul of this fine house.

    At least SOME trim remains; this could be copied.

    I wonder how much other trim and doors remain?

    • Will says: 4 comments

      The trim is probably stored. I see piles of stuff in several pictures that looks like moldings.

    • Joseph Rice says: 392 comments

      From the variety of interior construction, possible that this house was compromised long before. I suspect it was modified over the years for hotel/boardinghouse usage, partitioning as needed.

  3. Will says: 4 comments

    I’ve never seen studs lain laterally using wide boards like that. Very strange and would make really thin walls unless the plaster was very thick.

    Seems like a lot of money for a nice view and a massive financial investment.

  4. Bethany Otto says: 3471 comments

    Lovely stained glass. Lots of potential but a big project for sure!

  5. Laurie W. says: 1738 comments

    If the house gets what it deserves, the trim will be stored somewhere. Simply a crime to dispense with it completely. Pretty radical “un-restoration.” I know it’s the Hudson and all, but given that it needs total rebuilding, the price seems a little high. Photos of it in better days would be a big help in restoring it & I’ll bet they exist. It must have been a beautiful place.

    • Graham says: 146 comments

      I agree early photos would help a lot. I wonder what the structure removed from the back of the house looked like. That would be a prime area to hang out. Also it appears that the garage shown in the street view is no longer there.

  6. StevenFStevenF says: 186 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1969 Regency
    Nashville, TN

    Pretty exterior. However, if you look at this house on a map, you’ll see that it isn’t really on the Hudson river. It’s on the Shodack Creek, which is a tributary of sorts to the Hudson River. I’m not sure there were any “ships” passing by on the Shodack Creek to view this Paladian window. I know this is a technicality, but this technicality should be factored into the price, which seems a little high to me (a non-expert), given the condition and the street view. As noted above, there’s not even a mantle remaining.

  7. Jennifer HT says: 781 comments

    I remember sharing this sad home in recent weeks in on of the links thread. I was really hoping it would get noticed by an old home lover with the deep pockets and time to give it a proper rehab. I REALLY think it could be incredible!

  8. JimHJimH says: 5039 comments
    OHD Supporter

    The Captain Schermerhorn provenance differs from the NRHP info, but is possible because there were quite a few of them. The immigrant Jacob Janse Schermerhoorn arrived at Rensselaerswyck as a young carpenter under contract in 1636, and by his death in 1688, he was one of the largest landowners in the region. His son Jacob Jr. settled on his holdings at Schodack around 1670 and this branch of the family dominated the area in shipping and trade for another 6 generations. (Another branch made fortunes in Manhattan real estate and rose to the pinnacle of society – Mrs. Caroline Schermerhorn Astor was most famous of all.)
    The entire village of Schodack Landing has been an NRHP Historic District since the 70’s. Much of the old fabric of the village from the mid to late 1800’s is intact, although occasionally folks come up from the city and ruin fine old houses for no good reason.

  9. RosewaterRosewater says: 6337 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1875 Italianate cottage
    Noblesville, IN

    Lot-a money for a skeleton.

  10. Michaeljoe62 says: 100 comments

    Pretty certain the lovely stained glass referenced above is actually a window decal (image 14). And, yes, interesting choice of wording to call this “unrestored.” I would deem it “unfinished.” Too bad. 🙁

  11. Timothy says: 144 comments

    “Rare Unrestored State” for only $300+K ??? My, oh my! My definition of unrestored and that of the listing Realtor must be very different. But oh the possibilities but only with loads of time, money and effort.

  12. Jane from Maryland says: 7 comments

    ‘Twas there a flood that required taking down all the walls? It reminds me of some post Katrina houses I have seen.

  13. Firecracker0880 says: 9 comments

    Wow- looks rough and cold. High price tag too-yikes. The winding back staircase is pretty amazing though!

  14. Colleen Johnson says: 1171 comments

    Wow not quite sure what to think of this one. I think it could be a beauty, and I pray they kept some elements of the original to put back, the price, well here, they would call that a bargain for that size and history of the house, but I wouldn’t be able to afford to restore it at that price. I would love to see how this one turns out.

  15. Kay says: 63 comments

    This house does not “face” the Hudson, but rather backs up to it. The structure that seems to be torn off the back must have been a nice back porch and what a view that must have been. I hope this home is bought , restored to its greatest potential and loved.

  16. Diane says: 548 comments

    And the back porch – huge missing element. I was totally unprepared to find it gutted so completely. There may have been a valid reason and there may be all the missing elements preserved but if so, the realtor missed a bet by not mentioning. Can’t imagine any good reason to remove all the plaster from the brick. Seems too far up the hill to have been flooded to that extent. Maybe I could visualize the end desired results but right now it’s just depressing and over hyped.

  17. Dwight says: 34 comments

    After looking at the back of the house, I think this was originally the front of the house. If you look at the double doors on the back you can see that a much larger and grander door use to be in place. You can see where someone filled-in the space above the current double doors. That beautiful Paladin window on the second floor would never have been intentionally placed on the back of the house. At the time this house was built the main form of transportation would have been by river.

    • Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 11793 comments

      1901 Folk Victorian
      Chestatee, GA

      I disagree. The way the house sits, the back of the house was always the back of the house. It’s not unusual to have a fancy window on the back.

      • sara says: 1 comments

        My family owned a historic river house for many years. The facade facing the river was always the “front” and the drive up side is considered the back. It was this way due to the river being the “highway” so to speak. They likely had sitting porches on both sides and equally as nice entryways but the fancier windows (in this case the Palladian) is the front.

      • Ronnie says: 4 comments

        I’m pretty sure that the current backside of the house facing the water would have been considered the formal entry. The staircase also faced the missing porch from the end of the hall as most houses of that period do, the formal entry wouldn’t have had the stairs facing away from it as they were a status symbol and focal point.

    • JimHJimH says: 5039 comments
      OHD Supporter

      The main entry to the house was always from the road. This is the Albany Post Road, one of the oldest roads in America, established by the Dutch in the 1600’s. This part of the river was clear north to Albany and downriver to New York City and remained the main transportation corridor until the railroad came. In 1850 the Hudson River RR tracks cut the house off from the river and Amtrak still rolls through here a few times a day.
      The history and construction suggests the Federal Style house was built before 1800. There may have been a sloop dock behind the house originally if the owner was a trader as believed, but most visitors were local and would have used the door on the street. The Palladian window was purely for show to those in passing boats. It would have been very unusual to have a large covered veranda on the river side in the early period, so that was likely added after the railroad came through to enjoy the view and entertain guests.

  18. bill whitman says: 246 comments

    and that Palladian window is in the exact spot to be at the landing on the stairs so that fits although with everything torn apart it’s kind of hard to envision the stairs and the window. are any OHDers nearby so they could get older pix from historical society. be nice to see what that back porch looked like.
    the flood theory may hold some water (couldn’t resist). that river is not that far below the house.
    what a shame. still looks solid but at that price there’s not much left over for rebuild unless you’ve got really deep pockets.

  19. Michael Mackin says: 2431 comments

    It’s a lovely house on the exterior. It was hard looking at the pictures of the inside, though. Looking through the neighborhood, I’m wondering if the area could justify spending that kind of money for the house and probably at least that much more to put it back into reasonable shape! Perhaps someone who is more familiar with prices in the area could say something.

  20. Night Owl RN says: 6 comments

    Seriously? $325? Seems like WAY too much for a house that is just bones. Is the location really that desirable?
    That being said, this house could really be amazing if properly restored.

  21. Ronnie says: 4 comments

    I was in this house last summer for an estate sale, it needed a gut job. It was cut up into apartments in the 60s and strange partitions were put in (think boxy walls/half walls with cheap wood paneling), and looked as though it had some electrical fire problems in the walls, which had plaster crumbling and falling off everywhere, probably from being left without heating for decades. Other than the doors, staircases and windows it didn’t look like there was anything left to be saved. The back porch, which originally would have been the main entrance facing the river was removed since I’ve been there, it was an enclosed porch and looked as if it was going to fall off. It’s an insane amount for a gutted house, and though it looks lovely from the street and has a nice view it’s also right over the train tracks. The “bluff” they’re talking about 20 feet behind the house is actually where the tracks sliced through the landscape separating the house from the river, so every time the train races past the house at about 90mph you feel the house shake. My guess is someone from the City of Hudson bought it and thought it was as valuable as Hudson real estate, and after gutting it are in over their heads because in reality that would be the finished ready to move in price in that area.

    • Cynthia Lambert says: 22 comments

      Ronnie, I remember the estate sale last summer. I drive by this house every day to/from work. It is lovely on the outside, but whatever was left of the inside, they ripped out. And that door they so proudly show a photo of, with the glass in it is new. Some fool spent a load of money on a Lowe’s fancy door that doesn’t go with the house at all, and probably took out a very nice old door to do it. The house should never have been gutted like this. I see the crews coming in every day to work on it and I wondered what was happening. It is far too much money for a house with no insides at all. Whenever I hear people say, “It needs to be gutted,” my heart sinks. Gutting a house removes its very soul. They will never get that price for this place, and it will end up being auctioned off for nothing because it will take $300,000 to put the insides back in.

  22. Ronnie says: 4 comments

    This is a beautiful neighboring house built in 1770, set across the street from the tracks so the house doesn’t shake every time a train goes by, and ready to move in.

  23. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 11793 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Back on the market looking better than it did.

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