Records say this house was built in 1864, but the current owner has found documents indicating that it is older. City directories report Elizabeth Lee, widow of Rochester attorney Charles M. Lee, was living here as early as 1861. Philadelphia-born in 1805, she arrived at the tiny village of Rochester in 1821. She immediately committed herself to a lifetime of service as one of the founders of the Rochester Orphan Asylum and the Female Charitable Society, Rochester’s earliest organization dedicated to social reform. She died in this house in 1893.
Today’s owner is Corn Hill historian Jim DeVinney. He has filled the home with family mementoes including a china cabinet owned by his great-grandmother. Before retiring, he was a television writer and documentary filmmaker—you might spot some his television Emmys stuck up in a corner somewhere. But watch out! He’s an Irish storyteller and, once he gets started, you may not want to leave.