“But those who arrive today to pay homage to Baldwin won’t find anything commemorating that American novelist, playwright and essayist. No house museum greets them, or even a plaque with his name. The wing where Baldwin lived was torn down a few years ago. The remaining two houses on the property are in disrepair, the once-verdant garden unkempt. And the local real estate developer who now owns the property, after the Baldwin family lost control of it more than a decade ago, plans to build three apartment buildings and a swimming pool.”
“Trevor Baldwin, one of Baldwin’s nephews, who helped get a street in Harlem named for the author, said in an email that he would like something more tangible in Saint-Paul-de-Vence. “I hope there will be a commemorative vestige to honor his dedication to elevating humanity through enlightenment with appreciation for his love of the country that saved his life,” Mr. Baldwin wrote. Saint-Paul-de-Vence, where his uncle “chose to die,” Mr. Baldwin said, was deeply meaningful to the writer.
Baldwin left behind an unfinished play, “The Welcome Table,” about an African-American living in the South of France. Its title refers to the table in his garden here, where friends would talk late into the night. In the developer’s plans, that patch of lawn will become the entrance to an underground garage.”