Much-beloved author Harper Lee passed away this week at 89. And although the “To Kill a Mockingbird” author lived in Monroeville, Ala., it turns out she also had an Upper East Side apartment.
Lee renewed the lease on her apartment at 433 East 82nd Street only a few months ago, according to the New York Post. She signed the two-year lease at her one-bedroom, even though she hadn’t lived there since suffering a stroke in 2007.
“She’s up-to-date on her rent,” the property manager Steven Austern told the Post. Not surprising, since her rent was less than $1,000 a month.
Because the apartment was not Lee’s primary residence, Austern could have terminated the lease and collected a higher rent from a new tenant. But he told the Post that he couldn’t do that.
“She was a personal friend of mine,” Austern said.
“She was a very Southern and hospitable type of person,” one neighbor added.
The neighbor added that while living there, Lee would finish the New York Times Magazine crossword puzzle by 9 a.m. every Sunday and leave it on a table in the building lobby.
Lee moved to Manhattan in 1949 and worked as an airline reservation agent. [NYP] –Christopher Cameron