THE NEW LONDON DAY
November 14, 1999
STONINGTON BROKER SELLS JFK’S SUMMER RESIDENCE
Newport, RI (AP) – An unidentified New Englander is the new owner
of the Hammersmith Farm – the former summer White House of President
John F. Kennedy.
The purchase price for the mansion and its 48-acre property was over
$8 million – a new record for residential property in Newport. Fruit
of the Loom executive William F. Farley, who purchased the farm two
years ago, said the new owner plans to make it a family home.
The house was sold to a limited liability company by a Stonington
broker, Jim Michalove, who owns and operates the real estate firm
Seaboard Properties at 614 Wheeler Road. The firm, based in Stonington
and Watch Hill, specializes in “distinctive” shoreline properties,
Michalove declined to comment on who bought the property.
The Camelot relic will remain closed to the public.
Farley had bought the farm, the childhood home of Jacqueline Bouvier
Kennedy, to ensure that the Rhode Island landmark would not be
transformed into a hotel or spa, or subdivided into condominiums, he
said. He paid $6,675,000 in December 1997.
With the demands of his business making it difficult for him to visit
the estate, he decided to sell it. He was convinced the new buyer also
intended to protect Hammersmith as a state treasure.
“When I bought the property, I wasn’t sure what the intention was for
me personally, except that it would be a private residence, not
developed and with the integrity of the estate preserved,” Farley
But Farley visited Hammersmith just once since he bought it. Recently,
he was approached by someone asking about his plans.
“He wanted to buy it for use as a private home for his family,” Farley
said. “I said, do you really want to use it that way? He said he did.
I knew of him and of his firm, and I felt both were of high
The purchase was made by Hammersmith Preservation Associates, a Rhode
Island limited-liability company established on Oct. 21. One of the
company’s lawyers declined to comment on the estate’s purchase.
Farley said the new owner would make his own announcement later.