Built in 1737 by Nathaniel Lathrop, its prosperity was maintained by his son, Azariah. From here was started the first stage coach to Providence in 1768. In 1829 the property was sold to the Union Hotel Company, who erected the present building, which was later used for a boarding school.
According to Mary Elizabeth Perkins in her book Old Houses of the Antient Town of Norwich (1895):
Azariah died in 1810, aged 82, leaving the house to his widow, and son, Augustus [. . .]. Augustus Lathrop died in 1819, and in 1821, the administrator of the estate sells the tavern to Bela Peck. It was shortly after partly destroyed by fire. In 1829, the land was sold to the Union Hotel Company, who erected the large brick house now standing, which was used for some years as a hotel, but when the courts were moved to the Landing, lost its popularity, was later occupied as a boarding school, and was finally sold to John Sterry, who now occupies it as a summer residence.
In the early twentieth century, the building became The Johnson Home, a home for aged and needy Protestant woman (now accepting all denominations) incorporated in 1907 by the Connecticut branch of the King’s Daughters, a Christian philanthropic organization. A description of “The Johnson Home for Old Ladies” is given in the Report of the State Board of Charities to the Governor for the Twenty-one Months Ended June 30, 1920 (1921):
The Johnson Home is one of the more recently established places of this character and is situated near the Green in the Norwich Town district, about two miles north from the center of the city. Electric cars pass near the house.
The building occupied is a large brick structure, three stories high, which, some years ago, was an old-time inn. There are accommodations for eleven residents, and all of the rooms give an impression of home-like comfort. The management of the Home is liberal and few restrictions are imposed in the life of the occupants. An entrance fee of $500 is required for each person accepted as a resident in the Home.
As described in the Town of Woodbury History Walk, by Elizabeth Computzzi and William Monti, pp. 60-61, the house at 259 Main Street South in Woodbury was built by Josiah Beers between 1778 and 1784, when it was bought by John Rutgers Marshall (1743-1789), the first Rector of St. Paul’s Church. In 1809 the house was acquired by Judge Charles B. Phelps, husband of Rev. Marshall’s daughter Elsie, from his wife’s older sister and husband. Phelps used the house for both his law office and a tavern. After his death in 1859 the house became dormitory for the neighboring Parker Academy. The roof was raised and dormer windows were added at that time. In the early twentieth century the house was the Woodbury Inn and from the late 1940s until 1980 it was Rest Haven Manor, serving as housing for the elderly. Today it is home to The Elemental Garden, an antiques store.
Dudley Fox (1823-1889), a silversmith, built the house at 177 Naubuc Avenue in East Hartford in 1854. He then constructed a factory to the north were he manufactured silver plated ware. Fox served as the Hockanum postmaster from May 12, 1865, through November 27, 1867 and used a fancy stamp cancellation marking in the form of a Running Fox. (for more information see “Dudley’s Fox” by W.J. Duffney). Business did not go well and in 1869 Fox sold the house to his son-in-law. Read the rest of this entry »
Thompsonville in Enfield was once home to a substantial carpet manufacturing industry. In 1901, the Hartford Carpet Company of Enfield merged with the E.S Higgens & Company of New York to form the Hartford Carpet Corporation. Expansion followed and in c. 1902-1905 the company built a large mill building for the production of Axminster, a type of tufted-pile carpet. Located at the southern end of the factory complex, the Axminster Building is a four-story structure with a strong structural system to contain the many massive broadlooms required for production of Axminster. The building’s east end was once a common wall shared with the Color House, which has since been demolished. A new Axminster building was constructed in 1923. By that time the Hartford Carpet Corporation had merged with the Bigelow Carpet Company of Clinton, Massachusetts to form the Bigelow-Hartford Carpet Company (1914). Today the former carpet mill complex has been converted into the Bigelow Commons apartments. Read the rest of this entry »
Richard Davis Coan built the house at 15 Fair Street in Guilford around 1841. He married Flora Hitchcock Granniss. Richard Coan is described in New England Families, Genealogical and Memorial, Vol. III (1913):
He spent the greater part of his life in the place of his birth, and being a builder by occupation erected many houses and public buildings there. Later he removed to New Haven, where he was actively engaged in the building business, a member of the lumber and manufacturing firm of Lewis & Beecher Company, who conducted large planing mills, and was one of the leading industries of the city. He was known by the title of major, commanding the Guilford troops on muster day. He was very prominent in the work of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, and later in the Church of the Ascension, and being a musician of note was active in the choirs of both churches. After his removal to New Haven. Mr. Coan built a fine residence on Wooster street, which was at that time the finest residential section of the city.
The house in Guilford was later owned by Beverly Monroe, who ran a store on Boston Street established with his father and brother.
Once part of the property of the Isaac C. Lewis Cottage in Branford is a small clapboard barn with a cupola. Built around the same time as the cottage (c. 1882), the barn is known as the Toolshed. It was originally behind the house, but has since been moved closer to Thimble Islands Road and has been adapted for use as a summer cottage.