The Valentine-Varian House was built ca. 1758, when carriages traveled the nearby Boston Post Road through a Bronx that was still mostly farmland. It stands today as the borough’s second oldest house. Isaac Valentine, a blacksmith and farmer who bought this parcel of land from the Dutch Reformed Church, built the two-story fieldstone house in 1758. The home then stood one block south across Bainbridge Avenue. During the Revolutionary War (1776-1783), Valentine and his family had to abandon their home, which was occupied by British, Hessian, and American troops. The house, close in proximity to cannons clustered on a nearby hill, miraculously survived several fierce battles.
Take a walk down memory lane with Mr. Phil Coltoff as he talks about his new book, The Block, which covers his early...