Restoration, Revival, and Vision 1910-1961
The last Briscoe family owner, Elizabeth Briscoe Cashner, sold Sotterley to Herbert L. Satterlee and his wife, Louisa Pierpont Morgan Satterlee of New York in 1910. As part of what is now referred to as the Colonial Revival, Mr. Satterlee restored the property to his vision of an 18th century plantation, saving the plantation house and several old outbuildings, including an original 1830’s slave cabin that still survives today. His vision and his wealth, along with the belief that he too was a descendent from Suffolk, helped him save Sotterley from ruin. In residence only part of the year, Mr. Satterlee hired young Charles Knott as his farm manager. Mr. Knott managed the 1,000 acre property for the next 50 years. Other people lived and labored at Sotterley during the first half of the 20th century to include the Barber and Scriber families. Upon Mr. Satterlee’s death in 1947, his daughter, Mabel Satterlee Ingalls, bought the estate. In 1961, Mrs. Ingalls opened Sotterley to the public as a non-profit historic foundation, offering tours on a limited basis. She continued as owner and was involved in its management, visiting about four weeks per year until her death in 1993 at the age of 92. Sotterley’s management was then turned over entirely to the foundation.