Havens Homestead: Heartsease


     William Havens built his farmhouse in 1743 on 1,000 acres.  It originally had four first-floor rooms with two rooms above, a central chimney and cooking hearth and two doors at either end of the hall that faced north and south.  This allowed the summer breeze to blow through the home. In 1761, William’s son, Captain James Havens and his wife, Elizabeth, took over the homestead and named it “Heartsease.”
     Here, they raised their 11 children.  As the family grew and prospered, two rooms were added to the second floor.  The home was also a store, a tavern, a school, the post office and the town meeting hall which served a community of 27 households.  Captain Havens was a privateer during the war for independence and a Representative of Suffolk County in the New York Provincial Congress of 1776.


Early kitchen: The rooms of the Havens House now contain furnishings, textiles and decorative objects reflective of the years in which the family occupied the house.

18 th Century Bed

Tavern Room

Havens Barn: A large barn was built on the property in 1988.  It is a reproduction of a typical Long Island barn of the period and is used to display various collections, as well as serving as a location for  events.


Shelter Island Historical Havens House 19729

jArchival Photograph Courtesy of the New York Public Library (Digital Collection). Photo by C. Manley DeBevoise.


Shelter Island Historical Society