Affectionately known as the “Bradlee-Mac,” this home was once located in Altamonte Springs. Although published references have placed it as early as 1883 or even 1880, more modern research points to its construction beginning in 1885 and the finishing touches completed in 1888.
The original owners of this luxurious cottage was wealthy Boston architect Nathaniel J. Bradlee. It was Bradlee who designed the home and many others in the area. It has a distinctive Queen Anne style, which largely inspired the modern (yet historic-looking) Longwood Community Building just down the road. It has a castle-like tower with steep-angled gabled roof, and many decorative touches.
The Bradlee-McIntyre House was one of many vacation homes owned by wealthy New Englanders in Altamonte Springs. Another one, its mirror image, was constructed for Henry Herman Westinghouse (younger brother of inventor George Westinghouse) just down the street from its original location. Both were adjacent to the Altamonte Hotel, which sat at the intersection of Maitland Avenue and State Road 436.
The Bradlee family wintered here for many years. Nathaniel himself died shortly after the home’s completion on December 17, 1888; however, the family continued to spend winters in the home until they sold it in 1904. The house was purchased by S. Maxwell McIntyre that year. The family lived in the home until 1946 and thus lend their last name to the building today, along with its architect.
The local fire department planned to destroy this beautiful structure in the name of fire training. It was rescued from destruction by the tireless efforts of the Longwood Historic Society and generous donations from the community. The Society was founded in 1969 for the explicit purpose of saving this home. It took them four long years of persistence and fundraising, but these heroic founding members of the Society finally pulled it off! It was relocated from Altamonte Springs to its current home in the Longwood Historic District in 1973, on land donated to the Society by Grace Bedford. The Inside-Outside House was moved at the same time.
When it was first moved it was virtually condemned. Many thought it was beyond saving, but over the next decades the Longwood Historic Society painstakingly restored the building. Many people in the community have come forward to donate period pieces that have created a magnificent ambiance in the home that takes you back at least 100 years! Some pieces have been contributed over the years that were part of the home during the McIntyre period. In 2021 a washstand was identified by Habitat for Humanity in Athens, Georgia as belonging to the house. It was reunited with the house at a ceremony on June 26, 2021 as the first piece on display that dates to the earliest days of the house and owned by the Bradlee family.
Today it serves as our museum. It is a wonderfully preserved relic that makes you feel as if you have stepped back in time into an upscale period home.