HISTORY

SAVE THE HORSE TAMER – PRESERVE A PIECE OF HISTORY !

Aerial View of Harbor Hill, circa 1910

“Like many mansions of the Gold Coast, the Harbor Hill estate no longer remains, yet the Mackay Horses survived. So, it is in restoring these historic statues of the past, that we will enrich the present.”
Franklin Hill Perrell
Executive Director, Roslyn Landmark Society


The following written material has been reproduced with permission from the Roslyn Landmark Society

Wonder of the Gilded Age: Harbor Hill
High above Roslyn once stood Harbor Hill (ca. 1901-1947), the Gold Coast estate of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence H. Mackay. Architect Stanford White of the illustrious firm McKim, Mead and White, based the design of Harbor Hill on the French Renaissance Chateau de Maison-Lafitte built in 1649.

The 648-acre Harbor Hill estate featured 50 rooms, many of which were also decorated by White. Many of the original decorations can now be seen in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan. Harbor Hill ultimately included, with further architectural work by Warren & Wetmore and Guy Lowell, a casino, stables and elaborate formal gardens.

The Mackays frequently hosted legendary parties with government officials, dignitaries and leading figures from New York and Long Island in attendance. In 1924, over 1,000 guests were thrilled to attend a cocktail reception at Harbor Hill in honor of the Prince of Wales.

The Mackay Horses
On the western edge of Harbor Hill stood a garden which overlooked Hempstead Harbor, the Connecticut shoreline and Manhattan. It was there that two “horse tamer” themed statues were placed. Modeled after The Marly Horses, which were commissioned by Louis XIV in Paris in 1649 and are now on display in the Louvre, the imposing pink marble statues – the Mackay versions – stood 33 feet tall and weighed 25 tons each. The two statues first made their appearance at Harbor Hill in 1910.

The Mackay Horses Go Their Separate Ways
When Harbor Hill was demolished in 1947, the two horses were separated; one found a long-time home in front of Roslyn High School, while the other remained in situ on a portion of the Mackay property which later became a private residence in what is now Country Estates.

After 100 years of proudly standing guard over Roslyn, the Mackay horse in Country Estates was donated to the Town of North Hempstead …and came under the supervision of the Roslyn Landmark Society. The Roslyn Landmark Society is in the process of restoring this Mackay Horse and plans to place it in Gerry Park in the heart of Roslyn’s Historic District.
The Horse Tamer at Roslyn High School was removed on February 3, 2012 by North Shore Architectural Stone of Glen Head. It will remain there for safe keeping until sufficient funds are raised to begin its restoration and eventual return to Roslyn High School.


Please join us in making a donation to restore this magnificent historic monument and one of Roslyn High School’s most treasured symbols.