The history of the stone ruins between Scarborough State Beach and Black Point is a local mystery. There appears to be only a small amount of written record about the property and what I am presenting here is a collection of conversations with local residents, period newspaper articles and books that have references to the house and families that owned the home. The house in some sources is referred to as "Windswept" and others as "Scarborough".

the "cottage " had 21 rooms, including 5 bedrooms......and servants quarters.

The home and carriage house were built around 1895 as the summer estate of Edmund Davis of Providence. The house or "cottage" as it was called at the time had 21 rooms including 5 bedrooms, a kitchen with a laundry and pantry, living spaces and servants quarters. Davis acquired the property which consisted of fine lawns and grounds for $70,000.

Edmund Davis was the grandson of Perry Davis who in 1841 created a painkiller from opiates, alcohol, camphor and other ingredients that created "fabulous profits" for his business and family. The product was known as "Painkiller" and promised a cure for cholera, colic, dysentery and many other afflictions. Painkiller was bottled for sale with its label printed in 38 languages. It has been said that the homes of Edmund Davis were built with Painkiller money.

The New York Times reported in 1910 that the home was then owned by Stewart Davis and that an airship, manufactured in France, had landed on the property. Davis had studied aerial navigation and intended to have trial flights of the airship over Narragansett Bay.

In 1939, the estate was sold by Elizabeth Foster Stewart to Paul and Alfred Castiglione.  The property now covered 18 acres and was appraised by the Town of Narragansett for $45,000. The Castiglione's intended to turn the property into a restaurant. The menu for Cobb's by the Sea featured boiled lobster for $1.75, broiled filet mignon for $2.25 and a Sunday supper consisting of a choice of soup, juice, salad and served with a lobster patty, 2 seasonal vegetables, dinner rolls, dessert and coffee all for $1.25. Local residents recall the word "Cobbs Restaurant" painted in large white letters on the carriage house roof. The menu cover features a rendering of the house.

In 1952 the property was acquired by the Lownes family. Lownes is the name of the owners most mentioned by local residents. In it's final years the unoccuped property was damaged by vandals and set on fire over three consecutive years. The first two times the damage was repaired but the third fire destroyed the home. The house was razed in 1974.

The property is now owned by the State of Rhode Island who acquired the site in 1980 to keep the land from being developed for luxury condominiums.

I know that some of this information may be inaccurate, with information missing between and about some owners. My intent was to create a piece that would generate a response from the reader that would allow for a more complete and accurate description of the property. I've searched the internet, local libraries amd archives with a small measure of success. I believe that the real history will come from residents or visitors who were here in Narragansett in that period of time.

Please send me an email with any information that will help to expand the completeness and accuracy of this article. You can also send information through the space provided on my contact page.


"Windswept" at Scarborough

Winter Scene



Narragansett by the Sea, Sallie Latimer, Arcadia Publishing 1997

SO Rhode Island, Marna Krajeski, Providence Media, Pawtucket, RI June 2009

Ken Weber, Back Country Publications 1992

New York Times articles 8/25/1901 and 7/31/1910

Providence Journal 5/28/1939


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