Archive for the ‘American Foursquare’ Category

John J. Lawless House (1912)

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016 Posted in American Foursquare, Houses, Ledyard | No Comments »

John J. Lawless House

The house at 36 Hurlbutt Road in Gales Ferry, Ledyard, was built in 1912 for John J. Lawless, a lawyer and military veteran. Active in New London, Lawless apparently had homes in both Ledyard and the Quaker Hill section of Waterford, his home town. As related in the Gales Ferry news section of the Norwich Bulletin of Saturday, July 10, 1915:

Mr. and Mrs. John J. Lawless entertained Monday Mrs. Carlos Chapman of Groton, Mrs. D. J. Cavanaugh, the Misses Beaudry and Earle Wooten of New London. In the evening Ernestine Talbot, Mrs. Lawless’ young daughter, entertained her young schoolmates and some friends with fireworks and light refreshments on the lawn.

They were celebrating Independence Day on July 5 (no doubt because July 4 that year was a Sunday). A description of the career of John J. Lawless can be found in A Modern History of New London County, Vol. II (1922), edited by Benjamin Tinkham Marshall:

John J. Lawless was born at Vinal Haven, Maine, May 17, 1876. He received the preliminary portion of his education in the public schools of New London, having been brought to this city when very young by his parents. After graduating from the New London High School, during which time his attention had been turned forcibly to the legal profession, he decided to make it his career in life and, accordingly, prepared for college at Mystic Valley Institute, graduating from this institution in 1901 and subsequently matriculating at the Albany Law School, from which he won the degree of Bachelor of Laws in the class of 1903. Returning to New London, he entered the law office of Abel P. Tanner, where he remained until 1904, when, after passing his bar examinations, he established himself in the practice of his chosen profession which has proven extraordinarily successful, having grown extensively up to the present time.

Major Lawless has always been interested in military life, and during the Spanish-American War enlisted as a private in Company A, Connecticut Volunteer Infantry, being later commissioned a second lieutenant. After the war he was commissioned captain of the Third Regiment, and held this post for many years. The World War offered him another opportunity and this he was quick and eager to grasp. Successfully passing the examinations for major at Fort H. G. Wright, New York, he was sent to Plattsburg, where he was assigned to the 9th Company of the New England Training Division, and was mustered out of service July 15, 1919. Major Lawless is now a member of the American Legion, and is also past commander of the George M. Cole Camp, United Spanish War Veterans.

[. . .]

Respected as he is both in New London and his home town, Waterford, his advance can have known no deviation from the strictest probity and the most up-right methods. Such a record is certainly worthy of emulation.

Major Lawless married, July 5, 1910, Alice Wilbur Talbot, daughter of George L. and Emma Wilbur Talbot, of Putnam, Connecticut.

55 Lorraine Street, Hartford (1900)

Friday, December 4th, 2015 Posted in American Foursquare, Craftsman, Hartford, Houses, Shingle Style | No Comments »

55 Lorraine Street, Hartford

One of the most prolific builders in the West End of Hartford at the turn of the century was William H. Scoville (1869-1932) (his brother A. W. Scoville was also a builder). W. H. Scoville had a distinctive way of taking the basic American Foursquare form and applying elements of the Queen Anne/Shingle/Craftsman/Colonial Revival styles in an individualistic way. His many houses show great deal variety in the way he combined and exaggerated different architectural features in each one. The house at 55 Lorraine Street, built in 1900, is a particularly intriguing example of his work that seems to be almost Asian-inspired.

As described in the 1917 edition of the Encyclopedia of Connecticut Biography:

William Harris Scoville, architect and builder, was born in Elmwood, a suburb of Hartford, Connecticut, June 10, 1862. Shortly afterwards his parents moved to Hartford, where he received his education in the Wadsworth street school. He learned the carpenter’s trade with his father and became a skilled worker. At the age of nineteen, being ambitious, he began contracting and progressed rapidly as an architect and builder, employing the services of draftsmen. Now for over a quarter of a century Mr. Scoville has made a special study of the development of real estate and general building, one of his special ideas being to sell houses on the rent payment basis. He has for many years been active in public affairs, both political and educational.

Samuel Johnson Memorial Rectory (1897)

Saturday, December 27th, 2014 Posted in American Foursquare, Houses, West Haven | No Comments »

44 Church St., West Haven

The house at 44 Church Street, across from the Green in West Haven, was built in 1897. It served until around 2005 as the rectory of Christ Episcopal Church, during which time it was named the Samuel Johnson Memorial Rectory in honor of the parish’s first rector, Rev. Dr. Samuel Johnson (1696-1772). The nomination form for the West Haven Green Historic District mentions John Barnett, who had close association with the church, under its listing for this house. He may have been the original owner. In 1905, Martha J. Prudden purchased the former home of Catherine Sherwood to give to the parish in honor of Dr. Samuel Johnson. This may be the same house at 44 Church Street or an earlier rectory.

Charles H. Curtiss House (1910)

Friday, August 29th, 2014 Posted in American Foursquare, Bristol, Colonial Revival, Houses | No Comments »

Curtiss House

The house at 331 Main Street in Bristol, built c. 1910, is listed as the Curtiss House in the nomination for the Federal Hill Historic District. Around 1918, Charles H. Curtiss, 331 Main Street, was secretary of Local No. 50, Order of Railway Conductors of America. Curtiss had earlier (c. 1910 to c. 1914) lived at 265 Main Street in Bristol. Charles H. Curtiss (1864-1922), a Democrat, served in the state house of representatives from 1919 to 1920.

Roger S. Newell House (1920)

Friday, February 28th, 2014 Posted in American Foursquare, Bristol, Houses | No Comments »

82 Bellevue Ave., Bristol

At 82 Bellevue Avenue in Bristol is an American Foursquare house built c. 1920. It was originally the home of Roger S. Newell (who also once lived in the house at 101 Bellevue Avenue). As described in the Commemorative Biographical Record of Hartford County, Connecticut, Vol. I (1901):

Roger Samuel Newell was born in Bristol, Oct. 18, 1867, and received his academic education in the public schools of that town and of Hartford. He graduated from the Hartford Public High School in 1886, from Yale University in 1889, and from Yale Law School in 1891. He then read law in the office of John J. Jennings, Esq., of Bristol, and in 1891 was admitted to the Bar, after which he continuously practiced his chosen profession as a partner with his preceptor until the latter’s death, April 1, 1900. He was the first clerk of the borough of Bristol, in 1895 was elected judge of the town court, and in 1896 was elected judge of probate, to succeed Elbert E. Thorpe, on the latter’s decease. Socially he and his family are prominent, and he is a member of Franklin Lodge, No. 56, F. & A. M., and Pequabuck Chapter, R. A. M. In politics he is a Republican, and in religious belief a Congregationalist. Mr. Newell was, married in Bristol, Sept. 25, 1895, to Miss Adaline Birge, daughter of Senator John and Mary A. (Root) Birge.

Edward W. Morley House (1906)

Saturday, October 19th, 2013 Posted in American Foursquare, Houses, West Hartford | No Comments »

Edward W. Morley House

Edward W. Morley (1838-1923) was a famous scientist and a professor of chemistry at Western Reserve College (now Case Western Reserve University) in Ohio from 1869 until his retirement in 1906. He is best known for his work with physicist Albert A. Michelson on the Michelson–Morley experiment (1887), which measured the speed of light, and for his research on the atomic weight of oxygen, which he published in 1895. Upon his retirement, he moved into a house he had had constructed at 26 Westland Avenue in West Hartford, the town in which he had grown up. He built it using dividends on stock he held in the Dow Chemical Corporation. The stock had been payment for his consulting work for the corporation. He continued his scientific research in a laboratory he built in his back yard. He lived in the house until his death in 1923. An elementary school in West Hartford was also named in his honor. Read the rest of this entry »

William Park House (1913)

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013 Posted in American Foursquare, Craftsman, Houses, Sprague, Tudor Revival | No Comments »

William Park House

At 330 Main Street in the village of Hanover in the town of Sprague is a Craftsman-style American Foursquare house. It was constructed in 1913 by builder Peck McWilliams. The house was a wedding gift for William Park (1889-1971) from his father, mill-owner Angus Park, at the time of William’s marriage to Ruth Standish. The William Park House has stuccoed walls with Tudor-style decorative half-timbering and a porte-cochere on the north side.

Born in Galashiels, Scotland, Angus Park (1859-1929) emigrated with his family to Canada, where over twenty years he grew successful in the wool textile industry. As related in Men of Mark in Connecticut, Vol. V (1910):

He was employed there until 1894, when he came to East Lyme, Connecticut, and became secretary of the Niantic Manufacturing Company, being associated with an uncle, D. E. Campbell, and with a brother, William Park. He remained there until August, 1899, when he severed his connection with that concern and purchased the Allen Mill and properties at Hanover, Connecticut, which property is now known as the Airlie Mills. This mill had been closed for some time, and consequently was in poor condition. Mr. Park remodeled the mill and installed new and modern machinery at a great outlay of money. The mill is now one of the best in this region, and the product is a high grade of woolen and flannel suiting. In March, 1903, when the Assawauga Company, of Dayville, Connecticut, was organized Mr. Park became its manager, and one of its largest stockholders. In 1907, Mr. Park purchased the properties of the Crosby Manufacturing Company, at East Glastonbury, Connecticut, and organized the Angus Park Manufacturing Company, of which he is the treasurer and general manager.

The Park family woolen company prospered under the direction of Angus Park and then under his son William Park. The company continued in business until 1973.