The house at 60 Main Street South in Woodbury was built in 1829 for Dr. Frederick B. Woodward. The house’s front porch is a later addition. In 1842 it was purchased by Alexander Gordon, Sr. (1814-1893) who owned a tannery across the street. His son, Alexander Gordon, Jr. (1847-1914) befriended the famous wanderer called the Old Leatherman. Gordon provided scraps of leather to replace worn parts of the Leatherman‘s patchwork suit. In 1915 the house was purchased by George H. Benham as a Christmas present for his wife Antoinette Judson Benham.
Next to the North Congregational Church in Woodbury is the church parsonage. It was built circa 1828-1829 as a residence by Leman Sherman, who died in 1831. It passed through other owners until 1871, when it became the parsonage and has been a home to the ministers of North Church ever since. The parsonage, which was in danger of collapsing, was extensively restored and the interior modernized in 2012-2013.
At the intersection of Potash Hill Road and Westminster Road in Sprague is a house built in the eighteenth century (c. 1790) by Joshua Perkins (1740-1832). It is known as Ashlawn for the ash trees that once stood in front of the house. The rear ell was built c. 1740 (second quarter of the eighteenth century), probably by Joshua Perkins’s father, Captain Matthew Perkins (1713-1773). Both men were prominent farmers and members of the Hanover Society (Congregational Church). Ashlawn‘s nomination form for the National Register of Historic Places gives its address as 1 Potash Hill Road, but the house‘s address is now 179 Potash Hill Road.
The house at 82 Green Hill Road, on the north side of the Washington Town Green, was erected in 1790 by Samuel Leavitt, who is said to have made enough money in one year dealing in cattle and hogs to build it [this may be the Samuel Leavitt whose son, John Wheeler Leavitt, became a prominent New York City businessman and grandfather of artist Cecilia Beaux]. The house passed to his son William and then to Simeon Mitchell, who changed the original roof to a mansard in 1867. It was changed to the current gambrel roof by Edwin Fickes, who purchased the house in 1940. Fickes’ daughter Harriet Webb Fickes married Donald W. Chadwick and they are the owners listed for the house in the 1975 Report of the Historic District Study Commission.
The Federal-style house at 19 Washington Road in Woodbury was built in 1830 by Joseph F. Walker. As related in The Town and People, a Chronological Compilation of Contributed Writings from Present and Past Residents of the Town of Woodbury, Connecticut (1901), edited by Julia Minor Strong:
The honor of longest service as “Chorister” [at the North Congregational Church in Woodbury] probably belongs to Joseph F. Walker (more familiarly known and generally spoken of as “Uncle Fred”). His voice was a peculiarly rich and melodious tenor, always pleasingly prominent in fullest chorus. The very tuning fork that he used for so many years is now sacredly kept by his son, F. A. Walker, of Waterbury, Conn. It always has a place in his vest pocket.
The house later belonged to the Dawson family, who opened a store in 1884 at the corner of Washington Road and Main Street.
The house at 480 North Main Street in Suffield was built in 1794 for Dr. Howard Alden. The house was called “Aldenheim.” As related in The Centennial Celebration of the Hartford County Medical Association, September 26th, 1892 (1893):
first upon the list of founders of the Hartford County Medical Society[,] as read by the clerk this morning, stands the name of Howard Alden. He came to Suffield from Ashfield, Mass., at the age of 27, and was of the sixth generation from that John Alden whom Longfellow has made famous in his “Courtship of Miles Standish“: “Why don’t you speak for yourself, John?” Now we are told that shortly after Howard Alden came to town, he was taken sick with typhoid fever, and chanced to have as his nurse a fair damsel — one Rhoda Williston — whom he fell deeply in love with, and married on his recovery. So the romance of the marriage of John and Priscilla is reproduced in that of Howard and Rhoda.
For full half a century he and his genial associate, Dr. Pease, practiced side by side; the one, as was said, being good to the poor, and the other to the — rich! so both were we cared for: happy town! As may be inferred, he was a devout Christian and long a deacon of the Congregational Church. A case of what he called “Canine Madness” (Hydrophobia) may be found fully and graphically reported by him, in the reprint of the Connecticut Medical Society’s Proceedings, page 338; it occurred on the 28th of October, 1797. He died in 1841, leaving twelve children, only one of whom survives, at present a resident of Ohio. A few relatives are still in town, including a granddaughter — a most estimable lady — who, with her husband, still occupies the old homestead.
His son, also a doctor, settled in Ohio, as described in the History of Medina County and Ohio (1881):
Dr. Howard Alden came to Medina County in 1834, from Suffield, Conn., and located at Seville, in company with Dr. Mills. From Seville, he moved to Orange, Ashland County, in company with Dr. William Doming. He came back to Westfield in 1840. His father was a physician, with whom he obtained his medical education.
At 104 East Avenue in Norwalk is a brick house built c. 1834 by Henry Selleck. By 1847 it was the residence of Storrs Hall A.M., who ran the English & Classical School in the house. He is described in Norwalk (1896), by Rev. Charles M. Selleck:
Dr. Hall graduated at Middlebury College, Vermont, and afterwards engaged in academic work in Connecticut. He was the brother of the learned Edwin Hall, D. D., the pastor for twenty-three years of the First Congregational Church in Norwalk, in which town Dr. Storrs Hall established a private of school of high grade, and remained for a number of years its able and successful head. He subsequently studied medicine at Yale University, New Haven, and leaving the east established himself as a physician in Rosendale, Wis. In 1860 he was elected a Trustee of Ripon College, Wisconsin, and four years later chosen Secretary of the Board of Trustees of the same institution. His life has been spent along scholastic lines, and he is now, at the age of four and eighty, industriously engaged in professional work.