Meredith Small, the daughter of a frequently relocating aeronautical engineer for General Electric, “grew up all over the country.” When she settled in Ithaca, N.Y., she took a liking to the older houses there.
She was an anthropology professor at Cornell University, whose irreverent description of her specialty was “I used to watch monkeys.”
When she was retired and working on a project on parenting advice following her book Our Babies Ourselves, she collaborated with two researchers who live in Old City.
That is how she wound up with the condo on a cobblestone street there that she will soon be leaving for Brooklyn to be close to her daughter.
“I like the antique-y sort of look,” she said. “You can’t get more charming than this. And everybody knows everybody.”
The building housing her condo and several others was built in 1900 as a hardware store and its storage area.
It was converted to condos in the 1980s, with an art gallery where the hardware store used to be. Small bought her unit in December 2015 and moved in five months later.
In a bow to its past, the unit has barn doors opening onto the street, factory loft windows and exposed brick, and the bedroom doors are reclaimed from a school in Western Pennsylvania.
There is a loft-style living room, and both bedrooms have generous closet space.
The bathroom has tiled floors with a pedestal sink and tub/shower.
Perhaps the unit’s most unusual feature is a kitchen that Small said evokes Julia Child, with everything in easy reach. She has referred to it as a “hippie kitchen” and adds that “I’m an old hippie myself.”
A planned park at Penns Landing, scheduled for completion in 2026, will provide easy access to the waterfront.
The unit is listed by Pamela Rosser-Thistle and Reid Rosenthal of BHHS Fox & Roach at the Harper Rittenhouse Square for $425,000.
Read More: Philadelphia condo for sale in Old City for $425,000