Close your eyes and you can imagine the love and the laughter shared between the late actor, his wife and his daughters in this magnificent home. Keep them closed and you can imagine the antics that might have been had when Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid got together here. Newman was more than the celebrated actor we know him for. His philanthropy and entrepreneurial successes included the well known Newman's Own food line and The Hole in the Wall Gang, a camp for children with serious illnesses. Newman appreciated good food and opened a wonderful and innovative restaurant in his home town aptly called The Dressing Room. It was one of the first Farm to Table establishments which paved the way for many more that would come in the years to follow. Sadly the restaurant closed after his passing, leaving a gaping hole in the restaurant community.
Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward lived in a charming colonial home on a pristine 10.46-acre estate located at 277 and 275 North Avenue in the Coleytown section of town, an area particularly rich in history. Long before the Newmans moved in, the Coley family owned the property for close to 200 years. The property in Coley Village was originally part of Fairfield, before it became Coley Town and eventually the Coleytown part of Westport, as it is known today. The old Coley Village had a mill, shoemaker, blacksmith, yarn manufacturer, stables, small village green and one-room school house. Those have all since been torn down to make room for the modern, home that would belong to many formidable people - farmers, artists and, of course, the late actor and his wife. Unconfirmed rumors suggest the main house was a stop along the Underground Railroad.
The property boasts five buildings -- the main house, the former grist mill which then became a cotton mill, and a carriage house, as well as two barns. One of the barns is 200 years old; the other was converted into studio space with a bedroom and bathroom as well as an approved 2-acre building lot for a five-bedroom house and pool with its own driveway. The 1,600-square-foot carriage house was built circa 1900 and has three bedrooms and two baths. The second house which is the former mill, dates back to 1790 and sits along Coleytown Road. It has 2,100 square feet of living space and two fireplaces, one with a bread oven. The main house and the mill maintain their central fireplaces. Both houses are within walking distance of the Newman-Poses Nature Preserve. (All pictured below.)
The earliest portion of the main residence, known as The Ebenezer Coley House is a well preserved Colonial saltbox, that was built in 1763. The newer addition was designed by Kirby Grimes a revered architect based out of Bridgehampton, New York. He added square footage while keeping with the style and era of the main part of the home. A transitional space links the old house to new addition and boasts seven sets of French doors to the rear patio and the wisteria-entwined pergola, bringing the house's total square footage to over 6,400.
The formidable home has several other names. The Kerr Eby House was named after the noted artist and anti-war activist, who lived there and named it "Driftway." He made quite a few sketches and etchings of the home in a period of time between the two World Wars, and you can find them for sale still today. Westport used to be known for its artists' colony and quite a few notable artists and sculptors owned portions of the property.
Stroll along the property's well manicured lawns, formal and informal gardens where you will find a heated Gunite swimming pool, vintage stone walls and mature trees. You can practically envision all the people who've passed through, in carriages, on horse, by foot where those in past and present find themselves by the Aspetuck River which winds its way through the property. A footbridge crosses the river by a waterfall, and a sunroom in the second house provides a picture-perfect river view.
The asking price is $7,499,000