Archive for the ‘North Haven’ Category

Memorial Town Hall, North Haven (1886)

Thursday, January 4th, 2018 Posted in Colonial Revival, Monuments, North Haven, Public Buildings | No Comments »

Like Memorial Hall in Windsor Locks, the town of North Haven chose to honor its men who died in the Civil War with a functional building, instead of a traditional stone monument. Veterans had formed an association in 1885 to erect a monument and money was appropriated for the purpose in a town meeting, but a later meeting reversed this, as public opinion favored erecting a memorial building instead. As related in North Haven Annals (1892), by Sheldon B. Thorpe:

A lot was purchased from the Cowles estate, plans for a building adopted, and ground broken May 10, 1886. It had been voted by the town the year previous to celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of its incorporation the next October, and hence the appropriateness of dedicating the new hall at the same time.

The contract for erection was awarded to Solomon F. Linsley. The work was driven forward during the summer with all possible speed, but as early as October it was foreseen the building could not be completed in season for the Centennial ceremonies. Attention was then turned to finishing such portions of it as would be most needed on that occasion. A popular concert to be given as the inauguration of the joyful occasion, seemed to call especially for hall privileges, and consequently the upper floor was completed first

The completed building was severely criticized for inadequately referencing its memorial purpose. Thorpe, quoted above, wrote that

As the building progressed it became more and more apparent that its chief promotors [sic] sought more a public edifice than a soldiers’ memorial, and the sequel abundantly proved it. No provision whatever was made for an assembling place or headquarters for the veterans, and for some three years after its completion the latter body was required to pay rent for holding its meetings in it.

When constructed, the front of the building featured the words “1886 Memorial Hall.” Thorpe felt that

To the stranger such is an indefinite inscription. So many memorial structures are erected from other than patriotic motives in this day, that the lack of specific statement, either by word or device, makes this pile valueless as an object lesson. Furthermore, even within its doors no emblem to denote its character is seen until a small marble tablet, six feet by three, set in the vestibule on the second floor is pointed out as containing the names of those who died in service during the Rebellion.

The veterans persisted in their efforts to erect a monument, and one was finally dedicated in 1905. Memorial Town Hall has continued in use, but has a completely different appearance from what was built in 1886. It was an eclectic Renaissance Revival/Neoclassical structure, designed by local builder-architect Solomon Fowler Linsley (1830-1901). With brick provided by I. L. Stiles & Son, a local company, it showcased the thriving brick industry of North Haven, which was then at its peak. The building’s current Colonial Revival look dates to a 1949 renovation. Memorial Town Hall also housed the Bradley Library, which became the North Haven Memorial Library in 1907 and moved to its own building in 1938.

Pierpont Store (1845)

Saturday, June 17th, 2017 Posted in Commercial Buildings, Greek Revival, Italianate, North Haven | No Comments »

The building at 31 State Street in North Haven was built c. 1845 by Rufus Pierpont (1818-1855), adjacent to the 1795 Pierpont Homsetead, to serve as a general store. His son, Joseph Pierpont, continued the business, was operated by the family until 1942, when it closed during World War II due to a lack of help. A Greek Revival building, it was enlarged and remodeled in the Italianate style with a storefront on the west side and a side porch and projecting bay on the south side. These alterations were the work of Solomon Linsley, a Civil War veteran and local builder in North Haven.

Martha Culver House (1857)

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017 Posted in Houses, Italianate, North Haven | No Comments »

Ammi Culver, who owned a brickyard on the banks of the Quinnipiac River, built the house at 290 Quinnipiac Avenue in North Haven in 1857. After his death in 1865, his widow Delia lived their with her children, Benjamin and Martha, and Samuel Sackett, her second husband. Martha Culver (1864-1926) married Frank Smith, but soon divorced him. After traveling for some years, she lived the rest of her life in her old family home in North Haven. She later willed her house and land to the the town, stipulating that the property be used as a community gathering place that would include a library and recreational fields. The Montowese branch of the North Haven Public Library was located in the house for many years. Today Martha Culver Memorial is preserved by the North Haven Historical Society as a house museum and also contains the Brockett collection of early farm tools and equipment.

J. Boardman Smith House (1840)

Thursday, February 23rd, 2017 Posted in Greek Revival, Houses, North Haven | No Comments »

The ell of the house at 30 State Street in North Haven was built in the eighteenth century. This original home became a side-wing when the larger Greek Revival section was built in the 1840s. It was the residence of J. Boardman Smith and is thought to have once been the home of Oscar Benson, chauffeur of Frank L. Stiles.

Rev. William T. Reynolds House (1825)

Tuesday, January 17th, 2017 Posted in Federal Style, Houses, North Haven | No Comments »

The earliest residents of the hip-roofed brick Federal-style house at 2 Washington Avenue – 1 St. John Street in North Haven are not known. Much altered over the years, the house was built c. 1825 on the site where the c. 1680 homestead of Nathaniel Thorpe once stood. In the later nineteenth century the house was the residence of Rev. William T. Reynolds, who was pastor of the North Haven Congregational Church from 1863 to 1893. The house is now an office property.

David Bassett House (1790)

Monday, October 17th, 2016 Posted in Colonial, Houses, North Haven | No Comments »

David Bassett House

The house at 20 State Street in the Pines Bridge Historic District in North Haven was built c. 1790. Around the 1830s the house was willed to David Bassett by his grandfather. The current front entry porch was added in 1936 when the house was remodeled.

Alfred Linsley House (1780)

Monday, July 18th, 2016 Posted in Federal Style, Houses, North Haven | No Comments »

20 Church St., North Haven

The house at 20 Church Street in North Haven was built c. 1780-1800. It was the home of Alfred Linsley in the mid to late-nineteenth century. Today the former residence is home to the Murray-Reynolds American Legion Post 76.