This beautiful house was built for one of Dundee’s older, more prominent families, T. DeWitt Beekman. Friends and family called him “TD”. The home was designed by the Elmira firm of Pierce and Bickford, who designed many buildings in the Dundee Area.
Born in 1841, Mr. T. DeWitt Beekman was the son of Benjamin Beekman who built the house to the south of this one. He didn’t wander far from his childhood home to build his own house. Mr. Beekman started his career at a young age in his father’s furniture manufacturing business in 1856. He was the consummate entrepreneur, and began building businesses and partnerships including as a builder/contractor, cabinet and casket manufacturer. He later became partners with Frank H. Sayre, and they opened a hardware store by the name of F. H. Sayre & Co. Eventually TD worked at one of the local banks, working his way up to the office of president of the bank! In 1925, he was the oldest active businessman in Yates County. He continued working, never retiring, until two or three weeks before his death on November 25, 1925. Mr. Beekman built several residences in Dundee, and was instrumental in having other buildings built in Yates County.
Cornelius Beekman, T. DeWitt’s brother, went out to Oregon and became quite famous. Cornelius became a wealthy man, conveying gold as a Pony Express rider during the California gold rush, and started the Beekman Bank in Jacksonville, Oregon, which has been preserved until today as museum and a historical site in Jacksonville. Isadora Ulrich, grandaughter of T. DeWitt was born in this home in 1923 and lived here until she was about eight years old. She is the only living direct relative of the original T. DeWitt Beekman family and she has recently visited the home several times, sharing her personal memories of Dundee and this beautiful home. Further history is being gathereded and we hope to make that available for our guests at a future date.
This large, fascinating house is unusual for the small town of Dundee, because its grandeur is usually reserved for large city houses. It truly is Victorian with its mix of architectural influences. Please take notice of the wonderful wide front porch, and the Georgian Revival details, such as the large columns supporting the porch roof. The roof is steeply pitched and had eight dormer windows. They were removed due to age and leakage in the early 1960s.
Upon entering the home, your breath is taken away by the beautiful staircase with its stained glass landing that opens to a sun porch. You’ll be warmed by a gas fireplace, wonderful dark woodwork, and stained glass windows to catch the sunlight ever so beautifully.
Besides losing its dormers, the front stairs have been replaced with concrete and the ornamental balustrades were removed from above each bay window.
This house has been known as “Twin Pines” and “Mapleview” but to the history-minded, it will always be known as the “T. DeWitt Beekman” house.
In 2003 the house was painstakingly renovated, paying close attention to preservation of the original characteristics with updating and modernization. In June of 2011 the house was called the “1897 Victorian Lady” and opened as a bed and breakfast, allowing guests to enjoy the past with modern day luxuries.
In October of 2011, Chuck and Gerry France purchased the home and business, realizing their dream to become innkeepers. They turned the pages back a bit and renamed the home one more time as the “1897 Beekman House”. The dormers were reinstalled, restoring the home’s appearance to the way it looked in 1897.
Come and experience the old fashioned elegance and gracious hospitality of the 1897 Beekman House.