The Wilkinson farmstead was purchased by Jeptha A. Wilkinson, Sr. from Daniel and Abigail Terry, of the Town of Hempstead, Queens (now Nassau), NY, on 30 Jun 1846 and recorded in the clerk's office of Suffolk County, 3 Jul 1846. At the time of the sale, Wilkinson was living in Williamsburg, Kings County, NY. Previously, the Wilkinsons were living in Rhode Island
The Wilkinson farm may have been Daniel Terry's share of the Terry farmstead in South Haven. Daniel's siblings are buried in the Barteau Cemetery nearly across Montauk Highway to the north from the farm site. Additional research is required to determine the full extent of the Terry land holdings in South Haven.
A house appears on the 1858 Chase Map on the South Country road at the approximate location of the farm, identified as A Wiltinson†, probably actually Wilkinson. At approximately the same location, a house appears on the 1873 Beers map as A. J. Wilkinson, and on the 1915 Belcher Hyde map as Ella Wilkinson Est.
A 1844 newspaper advertisement (Sag Harbor Corrector, February 1844) clearly indicates that the property had a dwelling house and a barn at that time.
Newspaper accounts (Babylon South Side Signal, January and June 1875) indicates that in January 1875, the Wilkinson family completed a new two-story house, and moved various out buildings. Jeptha Avery Wilkinson Sr. actually died a year previous. A newspaper account (Babylon South Side Signal, May 1878) indicates that in 1878, a further addition was made to the house.
It then became the property of Harriet Turner Hohenhausen, Nathan D. and Emma Wilkinson Turner's daughter. She sold the bulk of the farmstead to Maurice Wertheim on 5 October 1944 [Affidavit of Title, Suffolk County Deeds Liber 2395 Page 342], but apparently retained a parcel along the east side (and perhaps the west side) of Old Barto Road at its northerly end containing the homestead. The recorded consideration she received was $3120.00. Previously on 21 Dec1943, she and Pearl Marion Knowles* of Rochester, New York, had sold the meadow lots to Wertheim [Suffolk County Deeds Liber 2307 page 146]. The bulk of the Wilkinson farmstead therefore became part of the extensive Wertheim estate in South Haven, NY, that Wertheim deeded to the Federal Government on 7 June 1947, [Suffolk County Deeds Liber2714 Page 336] and is now part of the Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge.
The artist Alfred M. Turner was said to have resided in the Wilkinson home in the later years of his life, perhaps as a lodger, although his relationship to the Nathan Turners has not yet been established. Alfred M. Turner is interred in the local Brookhaven Oaklawn cemetery.
The 1875 house is said to have burned completely to the ground on a New Years eve in the 1960's (the best guess in 1965, but no newspaper account has been found). It apparently was not occupied and perhaps abandoned at the time of the fire, although it is said that some of Alfred M. Turner's paintings were stored there, as well as prosthetics for his legs, which had been partially amputated before his death in 1932.
† A.J. Wilkenson was Jeptha Avery Wilkenson. Ella Wilkenson has not been identified, but probably was misidentified, and was actually Emma Wilkinson Turner, Jeptha's daughter, who seems to have eventually acquired most if not all the interest in the property from the other various Wilkinson heirs, or at least she, her husband Nathan D. Turner, and family were the principal residents.
* Pearl Marion Knowles was the only daughter of Alfred P. Marion, by 1943 deceased. On 18 Sep 1907, a mortgage was made by Nathan Turner and Lottie Turner to Alfred Marion in the amount of $500. While the mortgage had been disregarded at all times, no interest ever collected, and had been treated as cancelled, there technically remained a lien on the property. By the later 1944 sale, the satisfaction of this mortgage had been filed with the County Clerk (30 Sep 1944; Deed Liber 2395, p. 335).