The Hudson Valley is sprinkled with mansions from ages passed. From Presidential estates to millionaire accessories, the area was once a "playground for the wealthy" as described by Will Ellis of Abandoned NYC.

While some of these extravagant homes remain impressive pillars of history, others have not found the same luck, crumbling into abandoned wastelands. One of the most notable crumbling relics is Rhinebeck's Wyndcliffe Mansion.

The fate of Wyndcliffe has changed every couple of years. Strangely enough, after various owners, eras, and fates, the one thing that has sunken this mansion into abandoned is the very same thing that has kept it standing in recent years - its cost.

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Empire Drone Works Youtube

The Abandoned Wyndcliffe Mansion in Dutchess County, NY

This once impressive mansion has now become an abandoned building hunter's paradise.

@kaykayblondiee deep in the woods of upstate ny sits a beautifully decaying historic mansion! crazy spooky history here! #abandonedmansion #abandonedplaces #urbexny #urbex #upstateny #wyndcliffe #historicmansion #creepyplaces #decay #spookytravel ♬ 13 Angels Standing Guard 'Round The Side Of Your Bed - Silver Mt. Zion

 "Keeping Up with the Joneses" at Wyndcliffe Mansion

Built in 1853, the 24-room mansion was built for Elizabeth Jones, a single, wealthy New York aristocrat. The mansion, believed to be designed by George Veitch, was created in a gothic-adjacent style, Norman, according to The Poughkeepsie Public Library.

American author Edith Wharton was related to owner Elizabeth Jones and spent time at the mansion when she was young. Wharton's writings of this mansion have been used in defending its historic significance, despite her clear distaste for it.


In her book Hudson River Bracketed, she describes the mansion as having an "intolerable ugliness" and it having an "effect of terror."

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Empire Drone Works Youtube

Despite Wharton,  Wyndcliffe was notable enough to be the envy of other New York millionaires in the late 1800s, inspiring a string of new mansions in the Hudson Valley area. This is said to be the birth of the phrase, "keeping up with the Joneses."

What Happened to  Wyndcliffe Mansion?

Eventually, Elizabeth Jones passed away in 1876. With no spouse or children, the home was sold to its next owner, Andrew Finck. Finck's ownership and death is one of the more gray areas.

Some sources allege Finck hung himself inside the home, but there's little evidence to help decipher if this is true or some added flare to add mystique to this story.

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Regardless, Wyndcliffe changed owners multiple times through the Great Depression. By the 1950s, it had seen its last owners to live inside the home. No one could afford to upkeep the large grounds or the home itself following the Great Depression.  

In 2003, the building was bought and renovations began to the tune of $150,000. But the plan ceased once the estate was sold at a bankruptcy auction for less than the cost of those 2003 renovations - $120,000.

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Empire Drone Works Youtube

When it seemed like the mansion would likely be torn down, Real Estate Journal interviewed neighbors of the mansion for their feelings about the abandoned mansion. Some expressed their frustration with the unwanted lurkers that the building draws, many expressed some level of appreciation and even adoration for the mansion.

The general theme was, "It's going to be a sad, sad day when the building is torn down. It needs to be done, but it's going to be a sad day" as said by then-neighbor James Howell.

Wyndcliffe Mansion's Future

Despite a demolition application filed for the building in 2017, Wyndcliffe Mansion is still standing. Why? Because even demolishing the building was considered too costly. According to the Demolition Permit, the demolition itself was projected to cost $75,000 with a Liability Insurance of $1 million per person involved.

It's unclear what the fate of Wyndcliffe Manor is at this time. But, one thing is for certain. It sure isn't cheap to "Keep up with the Joneses."

SEE ALSO: Peak Inside the Abandoned Camp La Guardia in Chester, NY 

Take a look at what the mansion currently looks like these days here:

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