An 88-year-old Colonial revival home on East Chop Drive known as Big Bluff was demolished Monday.

House was long owned by Ivison family. — Jeanna Shepard

The house facing Vineyard Sound was owned by three families and associated the longest with the Ivisons: Sterling and Katherine Ivison raised their family in the home before passing it down to Sterling (Skip) Ivison 3rd and his late wife, Leigh Ivison.

Last October, the house was sold for about $2.2 million to Paul and Gretchen Massey. Oak Bluffs building inspector Mark Barbadoro said no special permits were required to demolish the house. As the house is less than 100 years old, it is not eligible for the demolition delay bylaw that gives the historic commission oversight.

Plans to rebuild a house on the property are with the board of health now, Mr. Barbadoro said, and once approved construction can begin.

On Monday onlookers gathered to watch the demolition and share memories of Big Bluff, where the Ivisons hosted parties that would spill from the back porch to the first floor of the house.

Claw-foot bathtub from servants' bathroom is salvaged. — Jeanna Shepard

“It was a beautiful party house,” said Ted Meleney, the husband of Kate (Ivison) Meleney. “Everyone on East Chop was invited to parties here.”

A pile of beach stones from the fireplace were piled behind the house. Shutters from the house can be placed in a trailer behind Mr. Meleney’s car. Katherine (Tottie) Ivison used to paint closed eyelids with lashes on the shutters in the winter, putting the house to sleep, he said.

“We spent a lot of time in that house, that’s for sure,” Mr. Meleney said.

Kate Meleney also kept a section of wall where visitors dating back to the first years of the house had written messages about their stays, according to David Stephens, her brother Skip’s best friend.

Mr. Stephens said he had been coming out to the house nearly every day since work trucks arrived, taking pictures each time. On Monday he arrived after the demolition had started.

House on East Chop Drive has sweeping views of the sound. — Jeanna Shepard

“I was going to paint my house today,” Mr. Stephens said. “But now I’ve got to watch the old lady go.”

Skip Ivison bought a piece of land nearby, where he plans to build a small house. And while Mr. Stephens said he has many memories from the old homestead, the memories stem from the family.

“The people who are here, who make a house a home, are gone,” Mr. Stephens said.

“The Masseys, I’m sure, will put up something beautiful,” he added.

Martha Wilder, a friend of the late Leigh Ivison, watched as a claw-foot bathtub from the servants’ bathroom was pulled out of the left side of the house.

Onlookers said they were sad to see the house go. — Jeanna Shepard

“Those walls have lots of stories to tell,” she said.

Joan Jecoy arrived as half of the front side of the house was reduced to a pile of boards. She didn’t know the Ivisons personally, she said but her daughter had cleaned the house for the Estelle family, who owned the house before Ivisons.

“It was always such a pretty house,” Ms. Jecoy said.

Bicyclists paused mid-ride to watch and nearly everyone present documented the demolition with cameras, including some of the crew. And though many onlookers said they were sad to see Big Bluff go, they also noted the beating a house on the bluff takes from the open exposure to the wind and water.

“You feel kind of nostalgic,” said Ms. Wilder. “At the same time, it was inevitable.”