The days are numbered for the "green light that burns all night" at the end of a Long Island dock in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. The Sands Point home, called "Land's End" has been scheduled for demolition after years of being on and off the real estate market, its asking price of $30 million being too high for those with even the richest of literary home-owning hopefuls.
The house itself could use some help from the crew at This Old House; windows are missing, the front door is loose from its hinges, paint is peeling from the walls, and the house is costing its current owners $4,500 per day to maintain. In January, Sands Point Village approved a developer's plans to demolish the house and build a set of five luxury homes on the estate's 13 acres.
The home is said to be an inspiration for the home of character Daisy Buchanan, the protagonist's love interest in the novel. Outside of the fictional, roaring 20's world, it hosted the likes of Winston Churchill and the Marx Brothers, and was originally owned by the Executive Editor of the New York World newspaper, Herbert Bayard Slope.
The current owners estimated that it would cost at least $2 million to restore the mansion to a livable condition. With a new, 3-D movie adaptation of The Great Gatsby being shot in a movie set in Australia (and the original 1974 movie being shot in houses in Rhode Island and England), the only place to find Land's End after this month's demolition might be the original novel. Generations of high school readers, though, may find it a bit tougher to forget about.