Located at 199 West Town Street in Lebanon, just off the Lebanon Green, is a building which is today home to the Lebanon Green Market. It was built in 1885 by the Lebanon Grange No. 21 as a cooperative store and social hall–the first in Connecticut built specifically for the purpose of housing a Grange chapter. While nationally the Grange Movement became involved in political issues, the Lebanon Grange focused more on its educational and social role, with music playing an important part in its activities. The Lebanon Grange acquired an organ in 1898.
Located at 37 West Town Street in Lebanon, along the Lebanon Green, is a house built circa 1770. It is referred to as the Lyman House in the nomination for the Lebanon Green Historic District. A driveway next to the house leads to the Lebanon Senior Center. Read the rest of this entry »
At 77 West Town Street in Lebanon is a house built c. 1880 by Isaac Gillette. He was a delegate to the state Constitutional Convention in 1902. Pin Oak seedlings were distributed to each delegate to plant in his home town. Gillette planted his in his front yard, where the Constitution Oak (not pictured above) still grows today.
The First Baptist Church of Lebanon is located at the north end of Lebanon Green. The church was founded in 1805 and the current church building dates to 1841. The steeple originally had a second stage that deteriorated and was removed in the 1930s. A chapel, built from lumber from an old cheese factory, was added in 1907.
The First Congregational Church of Lebanon was organized in 1700. Its first two meeting houses were built in 1706 and 1732. These were followed by a brick meeting house on the green, designed by the Revolutionary War-era artist John Trumbull, which was built in 1804-1809. It is the only surviving example of Trumbull’s architectural work. The historic building was nearly destroyed in the hurricane of 1938. The church decided to restore the meeting house in its original form. Work began in 1938 and, delayed by the Second World War, was completed in 1954.
In 1711, Reverend Samuel Welles became the second pastor of the Congregational Church in Lebanon. In 1712, he built a house on what is now route 87, across from where William A. Buckingham Birthplace House would be built in 1804. According to a biography of Jonathan Trumbull, the governor of Connecticut who as a boy had been tutored by Welles, “If there were any exceptions to the rule of social equality which existed in the town at this time, one exception might be found in the case of this same Reverend Samuel Welles, whose aristocratic Boston connections had enabled him to build the handsomest house in Lebanon.” In 1719, Rev. Welles had married Hannah Arnold, whose family owned extensive property in Boston. Her parents wanted the couple to move to Boston, so Welles left Lebanon in 1722, looking after his wife’s property after her parents’ deaths and, according to Biographical Sketches of the Graduates of Yale College (1885), in Boston, “he accumulated more wealth, becoming one of the richest men of the town, and highly respected.” On leaving Lebanon, Welles sold his house to his successor as pastor, the Rev. Solomon Williams, son of the Rev. William Williams of Hatfield. Rev. Solomon Williams’ son, William Williams, was born in the house in 1731 and later went on to become a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Another son of Rev. Williams was Ezekiel Williams, who moved to Wethersfield and was a merchant and sheriff of Hartford County during the Revolutionary War. The Williams family later moved to another house on the other side of the street in 1748, which was later inherited by William Williams. Their former home came to be owned by David S. Woodworth. In 1857, Charles Lyman Pitcher began working for Woodworth, eventually gaining possession of the farm after Woodworth’s death. Pitcher served in the Civil War and later the farm was managed by his two sons after his retirement.
William Alfred Buckingham, governor of Connecticut during the Civil War and later a U.S. Senator until his death in 1875, was born in 1804 in a house in Lebanon, which was later moved (see comment below) by his father, Deacon Samuel Buckingham, who built a new house on the location between 1808 and 1817. The new Federal-style Buckingham house was later altered through the addition of Victorianizing features, like the bay windows on the front facade.