The Alice Austen House -- known as "Clear Comfort" -- fosters creative expression, explores personal identity, and educates and inspires the public through the interpretation of the photographs, life and historic home of pioneering American photographer, Alice Austen (1866-1952). 

Alice Austen (1866 - 1952) captured a changing New York City in more than 7000 photographs taken mostly around the turn of the twentieth century. Austen documented her life on Staten Island and went onto the streets of Manhattan to photograph the activities of immigrants and the working class. She was versatile and forged her own path beyond the restrictive Victorian expectations for women. Austen was a master tennis player, an early advocate for women riding bicycles, founder of the Staten Island Garden Club, and is said to be the first women on Staten Island to own a car.

The museum presents changing exhibitions of Alice Austen's pioneering historic photographs and of contemporary photography,  The museum's listing on the National Register of Historic Places was amended in 2017 to include LGBTQ history as an area of significance, recognizing Austen and her life partner, Gertrude Tate, who lived together here for nearly 30 years. .