Archive for the ‘Organizations’ Category

Old Y.W.C.A. Building, Bridgeport (1941)

Monday, July 24th, 2017 Posted in Bridgeport, Colonial Revival, Organizations | No Comments »

The central portion of the building at 263/265 Golden Hill Street in Bridgeport was built for the Y.W.C.A. in 1941, with rear wings added in 1959. The building replaced an earlier house on the site, built for Albert Bishop and torn down in 1936. The new building was designed by architect C.W. Walker to reflect the style characteristics of the Bishop House. It was built by the E & F Construction Company. When the picture above was taken a few years ago, the building was serving as the city’s Dwight D. Eisenhower Senior Center, which has since moved to a new address at 307 Golden Hill Street. The building is also home to the Downtown Cabaret Theatre.

American Seamen’s Friend Society Sailor’s Reading Room (1841)

Saturday, July 1st, 2017 Posted in Italianate, Libraries, Mystic, Organizations, Outbuildings, Stonington | No Comments »

One of the buildings at Mystic Seaport is set up to represent the American Seamen’s Friend Society Sailor’s Reading Room. The Society was incorporated in 1833 to provide moral and religious alternatives to the saloons, boardinghouses and brothels frequented by sailors while in port. The organization is best known for the libraries it placed aboard American ships for the use of sailors. The Society’s records are now held the Collections Research Center at Mystic Seaport. This historic organization is interpreted for Mystic Seaport visitors in a building erected c. 1841 as a work shop and tool shed by Clark Greenman of the George Greenman & Co. Shipyard. Starting in 1951, it was used as the Seaport’s Children’s museum, before housing the Reading Room exhibit. The building originally stood where the Treworgy Planetarium was built in 1960. It was moved to its current location in 1959. Read the rest of this entry »

Wallingford Grange Hall (1933)

Friday, June 30th, 2017 Posted in Greek Revival, Organizations, Wallingford | No Comments »

In 1885, William Ellsworth Hall, a pioneering orchard-owner in Wallingford, together with thirty-one others, established Wallingford Grange No. 33. Hall was called “The Father of the Wallingford Grange” in a letter of sympathy from the Grange to his family after his death in 1920. Wallingford’s Grange Hall was built at 586 Center Street in 1933 and is still used for Grange meetings twice a month.

Watertown Masonic Temple (1873)

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017 Posted in Greek Revival, Organizations, Watertown | No Comments »

According to assessor’s records, the Greek Revival building at 175 Main Street in Watertown was built in 1873. Known as the Watertown Masonic Temple, it is home to Federal Lodge No. 17. The first Masonic Lodge meeting in Watertown was held on December 22, 1790. Part of the building, with the address of 179 Main Street, is rented to a retail store. Watertown Grange #122 (organized in 1891) also meets in the building. The nomination for the Watertown Center Historic District lists the building as the Grange Hall and provides a construction date of c. 1850.

American Legion Hall – Griffith Academy (1874)

Sunday, May 28th, 2017 Posted in Churches, Folk Victorian, Organizations, Wethersfield | No Comments »

The building at 275 Main Street, at the corner of Hartford Avenue, in Wethersfield, was built c. 1874-1876 as a Baptist Church. Declining membership led the church society to vote to disband in 1918 and deed their Main Street property to the Town of Wethersfield for use as a library. The town decided not to proceed with that project and in 1922 the building was sold to Russell K. Bourne D.S.C. Post of the American Legion, which changed it name to the Bourne-Keeney Post 23 in 1949. The name honors Russell K. Bourne, who was killed in action in 1918 during the First World War, and Robert A. Keeney, who lost his life when the USS Indianapolis was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine in 1945. The second floor hall of the building maintains the deck of the Minerva, used as training ground for the town’s Sea Scouts. In 2014, the Legion Post sold the building to the Griffith Academy, which teaches Irish dance. The Academy had been renting the Hall for many decades. The veterans continue to use the building as well, now renting the basement.

Former Meriden Y.M.C.A. (1877)

Sunday, February 19th, 2017 Posted in Commercial Buildings, Meriden, Neoclassical, Organizations | No Comments »

The building at 21-23 Colony Street in Meriden was erected in 1877 as a Y.M.C.A. The rear of the structure has a mansard roof and the front facade once had one as well, but the building was altered c. 1920 after the Y.M.C.A. moved to a new building on West Main Street. At that time the building was converted to commercial use with a new facade in the Neoclassical style.

As reported in the Daily Republican on August 1, 1877, a day after the dedication of the building:

The handsome and commodious new building is now ready for occupancy, and it has been built almost solely through the untiring energy and exertions of the president of the association, Mr. W. E. Benham. He has never faltered since he took the matter in hand, but has kept on through difficulties and discouragements which few other men would have surmounted. The association now has one of the handsomest buildings of the kind in the state. Its large and pleasant reading rooms, its gymnasium, and the pleasant parlors will furnish places of resort which cannot fail of doing much good, and Mr. Benham can certainly reflect with great satisfaction upon the good work he has accomplished.

According to The Life and Writings of W. E. Benham (1882):

Its whole internal arrangements are found to have been wisely planned for the accomplishment of its benevolent purposes. It is said to be the most elegant and best built building in Meriden, is admired by all, subscribers and citizens generally, as the right building in the right place, an attractive, convenient center, in which the public, especially young men, in large numbers, delight to resort and pleasantly improve their leisure hours in intellectual, physical, social, moral and religious culture, where, away from the evil, all the surrounding influences are good and elevating. It is estimated’that between 1,000 and 2,000 persons average daily to enter this building, for the various purposes of water, baths, hair-dressing, food, clothing, reading, singing, gymnastics, writing, arithmetic, lectures, concerts, mission schools, lyceums, religious and other meetings. In short, it is an inestimably important building for the moral welfare of Meriden, and could not be spared without an irreparable loss.

Gilead Hall (1905)

Wednesday, January 25th, 2017 Posted in Colonial Revival, Hebron, Houses, Organizations, Public Buildings | No Comments »

Gilead Hall was erected to serve as a public meeting and gathering place for residents of the Gilead section of Hebron. Built by the Gilead Hall Association, it was dedicated on September 4, 1905. It was used as a Grange Hall until 1950. In 1978 it was converted into a residence and has a much modified interior. Its modern address is 667 Gilead Street.