Grey Gardens Est. 1960’s.
217 Bay Walk.
By Joe Bailey Cole.
It was a gate house or game house on Long Island, near Patchogue, built about 1840, before wood beams were milled. Many of the beams in the house are hand honed. In the late 1960’s, I can’t recall the precise date, the house was floated over on a barge and sat out on the Bay for the summer a few dozen yards from the short. Christine Stluka Corso and her family would swim out to it, climb up on the roof and jump into the water. In the fall, it was dragged overland and set up on its present lot. The two houses now in front were not there then. This is all pre-electric days on FIP and the house still had gas lighting when we bought it in 1977.
Larry Kramer and friends rented the house in 1975 and 1976 and Larry named it for the movie Grey Gardens. It was formally named Annie Hall, but that name didn’t stick, it looked so much like the Long Island run down and romantic mansion in the Hamptons called “Grey Gardens.” Gene Smith sold it to us. Everyone thought we were mad, and that it would take so much money to restore. The novel “Faggots” by Larry Kramer was written in the guest house.
(Gene Smith below)
But they did.
Joe Bailey Cole, Sylvan Cole, and Kit.
There would be many dinner parties…
Art would be part of the home…
Love lived here.
Joe was involved in the community…
Life moved on.