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Upper East Side of the City of New York

Charles Graham Brownstone Townhouse

Location Location

A block and a half from Central Park on a prominent upper east side street. Madison Avenue Shops, Lexington avenue dining and Park Avenue strolling. You are in the heart of it all in your own private sanctuary.

Front Entry Sitting Room

The front sitting room can be set up in several ways besides the traditional greeting area for visitors. Here is a modern take with a virtual staging as a front office

Gracious Parlor Level Rooms

The large foyer looks back through the living room and into the dining room. These wonderful rooms are perfectly proportioned for the family as well as entertaining a large gathering of friends.

Master Bedroom

The Master Bedroom suite is expansive with a modern bathroom suite with shower and tub. The quiet back of the house location is the perfect sleeping environment. The front room can be set up as an office of huge dressing suite.

Garden Level Kitchen

The Garden Level has a large gourment kitchen with Sub Zero and Vulcan appliances. A small back yard offers a private oasis and plenty of light. Next is the dining area which is currently an office. The front room can be set up as an office or private bedroom.

Great Neighbors

Central Park and the world-famous Frick Museum start our tour down 70th Street. At Madison Avenue the Prada store greats you along with world-class shopping. The townhouse sits right in the middle between Madison and Park Avenues. The Explorers Club, Austrian Embassy, and Estee Lauder are your immediate neighbors.

Exterior View of 38 East 70th Street townhouse

Upper East Side Brownstone

Purchase or Rental Inquiries – buyer brokers protected

8 East 70 is one of the finest examples in New York of the classic Brownstone townhouse. The home was was built in 1884 and designed by Charles Graham. 38 East 70th features a high stoop, large bay windows with full entrapments and cornice slab lentils. It is the only house of the original row to retain it’s original appearance.

  • Lot 100 x 16
  • Square Feet 5,000 of living space
  • Type Townhouse
  • Floors 6
  • Bedrooms 6
  • Bathrooms 5.5
  • Rooms 12 (excluding baths, basement or foyers)

Key Features

  • Superb AAA Location on the Upper East Side
  • High Ceilings
  • Gorgeous original parquet Floors
  • Molding and original Details intact
  • Gourmet Kitchen
  • Renovated Bathrooms
  • Decorative fireplaces


Spectacular New York City townhouse living in this very special home in a prime Upper East Side location, family-owned and occupied since 1907 and lovingly cared for and preserved. Just steps from Madison Avenue’s finest shops and glorious Central Park, this exquisite five-story townhouse rental boasts six bedrooms, library/bedroom, four and one-half baths, pantry with original wood cabinetry and dumb waiter, one working and seven decorative fireplaces with original details, dramatically high ceilings, crown and picture frame molding, skylights, and sunny north/south exposure. Each bathroom has been renovated, and the garden level has a brand new state-of-the-art kitchen with top-of-the-line appliances and a stunning tile floor complementing the spacious and comfortable breakfast room. Original details in this house are intact and in amazing condition, surrounding you with the elegance and charm of days long ago while the modern amenities provide for easy living. Please note that a half bath has been added on the garden level, which is not indicated on the floor plans. Showing by appointment in May for this very special Upper Eastside jewel. Your pets are welcome.

About the Architect

When Scottish-born Charles Graham arrived in New York in 1851 he did what he knew best:  stair building.  Fourteen years later he organized the firm of Charles Graham & Co., which not only continued building stairs but entire buildings.  Later the Evening World would say that “he was identified with the building of the metropolis, and “was largely instrumental in the building up of Upper Madison Avenue.”

Graham was a staunch opponent of slavery and during the Civil War, he was in charge of “a New York station of the ‘underground railway,’” according to The Sun.  He was a close friend of Horace Greeley and abolitionist Wendell Phillips and wrote several anti-slavery articles for The Tribune.

Graham had four sons. His heart was broken when his son Samuel disappeared in 1869.   Two of the other boys learned the building and real estate trade with Thomas becoming an accomplished architect as well.   In the 1880s Graham took sons John and Thomas into the firm with him, renaming it C. Graham & Sons.

From their office at 305 East 43rd Street, the Grahams feverishly designed and built homes in the developing Upper East Side, ranging in price from $20,000 to $100,000.   The successful builders even operated their own sash and blind factory.  Then in September 1890, Thomas struck out on his own.

Starting out with $15,000 in cash, Thomas Graham aggressively built homes; but he had a grander idea as well.  By now the concept of exclusive residential hotels had taken hold in New York.  Wealthy residents who would rather not be inconvenienced by the upkeep of a private home and maintaining a staff of servants could permanently enjoy the independence and luxury of a hotel.

In May of 1893, a month after Charles Graham’s wife died and years after his son Samuel had disappeared, the builder received a photograph of a little girl.  On it was written “Your granddaughter, Alice Graham.”  There was no postmark to tell from where it had been mailed.  The 82-year old man, in feeble health, placed advertisements in all the major newspapers throughout the country searching for information.  Before long Samuel, “broken, ill, dying,” according to The Evening World, returned to his father’s home with his daughter, Alice.   Only days after his return, Samuel died.

“It broke the old man’s heart,” reported The Evening World, “and two weeks later he died also, the newly found granddaughter soothing him and smoothing his pathway to the grave.”

Thomas Graham continued his father’s legacy of concern for the poor and downtrodden.  That year The Times noted that “There is no slackening in the efforts both of individuals and of organizations to furnish aid for the poor.”  The newspaper reported “A meeting of the charitably-disposed residents of the east side” had been called at the Graham House “to extend the work of a diet kitchen in a neighborhood near the river front, where much suffering and want exists.  Mr. Graham has offered the use of his dining hall for this meeting.”

 See the original blog post by Tom Miller –  here

Looking East from Lexington down 70th Street circa 1900. 38 East 70th St. is behind the camera -c- NY Times

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