The center-chimney colonial saltbox house at 44 Fair Street in Guilford was built in 1762 by Noah Hodgkin, Sr. In 1770, his son, Noah Hodgkin, Jr., built the house next door at 52 Fair Street. Noah Hodgkin, Sr. died in 1783, leaving his house to his widow and his son, the Reverend Beriah Hotchkin (who had altered his name from Hodgkin to Hotchkin). Rev. Hotchkin was pastor of the Fourth Congregational Church in Guilford from 1784 until 1789, when he moved to Greenville, NY, where he served as a Presbyterian minister. In 1825, Rev. Hotchkin moved to Steuben County, NY, where he died in 1829. Descendents of his family family, later known by the name Hotchkiss, continued to occupy the house in Guilford for generations. This my 50th post for Guilford!
The William Redfield House, at 96 Broad Street in Guilford, has been much altered over the years. William Redfield sold it three years after it was built. For a time the house was the residence of Rev. Daniel Brewer, who was dismissed as pastor of the Fourth Congregational Church in 1775 but chose to live in this house, then located next door to the church, until he left Guilford in 1779. Nelson Hotchkiss, a New Haven builder and contractor, bought the house in 1872. He moved it back from the street and it was probably Hotchkiss who also converted it to a two-chimney, center-hall house and added a Second Empire front porch. In 1974, the house became a furniture showroom, but has recently been restored.
The house at 1401 Main Street in Glastonbury was built for Gideon Hale, probably in 1762, the year he married Mary White of Middletown. According to tradition, the wedding party crossed the Connecticut River after the wedding to the newly-built house and ended up staying for a week because of a severe snowstorm. Gideon Hale (1736-1812) was a member of the Connecticut General Assembly (1782-1785) and Constable of Glastonbury (1873). From December 1814 until the spring of 1817, the Columbia Lodge of Masons met at the house. As described in The Hollister Family of America; Lieut. John Hollister, of Wethersfield, Conn., and His Descendants (1886), edited by Lafayette Wallace Case:
The death of Mrs. Hezekiah Hale, at the age of 94, leaves the old Hale mansion in Glastonbury without a mistress at its head for the first time since its erection, one hundred and twenty-three years ago.
It was in this house, then just built, that Gideon Hale and Mary White, who were married December 23 , commenced housekeeping, and here their youngest son, Hezekiah, brought his newly married wife, Pamela, daughter of Dr. Asaph Coleman, November 17, 1813. The elder Mrs. Hale died, a widow, April 1, 1820, and Mrs. Pamela Hale died Oct. 8, 1885, having survived her husband fifty three years. For one hundred and twenty-three years, lacking a little over two months, the house has seen but these two mistresses. Gideon Hale and Mary White reared a family of five sons and six daughters, under the old roof-tree, all of whom, except two daughters, were married and left the old place; and Hezekiah Hale and Pamela Coleman reared a family of three sons and three daughters, who, with one exception, went into the world and had families of their own; and the descendants of both, now widely scattered, will greatly miss the cheery greeting and hospitable welcome of the last mistress, who always made a visit to the old home so pleasant, and whose fund of anecdote and information regarding those who had gone, always so willingly given, was full of information and interest. The funeral of Mrs. Hale took place on Sunday afternoon, and was largely attended by sorrowing relatives and neighbors. The Rev. Mr. Betts, of the Episcopal church, officiated. The solemn dignity of that beautiful service in the rural cemetery, under the bright sun and genial October air, made the scene very impressive.
Mrs. Pamela Hale, the estimable lady here alluded to, was an aunt of the late Hon. Gideon Welles, of this city. Mr. Welles held in high esteem the venerable lady, and he was fond of the old homesteads in Glastonbury, where his father lived and where he was born. He used to relate many pleasant reminiscences of those fine homesteads, and the prominent families who occupied them.
The house’s front Connecticut River Valley doorway is a reproduction based on nineteenth-century sketches of the original. Read the rest of this entry »
Built circa 1695-1700, the Samuel Smith House (pdf), at 82 Plants Dam Road in East Lyme, is notable as an example of a mostly unaltered early colonial-era house. Additions were made in 1735 (when the end-chimney structure became a center-chimney structure with an expansion on the west side and the house was re-framed with a gambrel roof) and 1812 (when a rear ell was added), after which the house remained essentially unaltered. The house still has an eighteenth-century shed (with a lean-to added in the twentieth century), the original well and a c. 1810 outhouse. Also known as the Hurlbut House, the Smith House was built on land owned by Nehemiah Smith, Jr. In 1698, Smith transferred the property to his son, Samuel, who was probably already living on the property (his father lived elsewhere). Recently acquired by the town of East Lyme, the house is being restored by the Friends of the Samuel Smith House to become a museum.
Born in Stonington, John Breed (1752-1803) later settled in Colchester, where he married Lucy Bulkeley (born 1749) on 13 May 1773. He purchased land on Town Street (now South Main Street), then the main road between between New London and Hartford, and built a tavern in 1777. It had a large ballroom that extended the entire width of the house on the third floor. The Wooster Lodge of Masons met at the tavern between 1789 and 1801. Breed was also a gold and silversmith. After Breed died, his widow continued to operate the tavern until her own death in 1821. It was then purchased to become the residence of Elisha Avery, a wealthy Groton merchant and manufacturer. He died a year after buying the house (208 South Main Street), but it remained in his family for many generations. There is an old English Bank type barn on the property.
Eli Terry (1772-1852), the prominent inventor and clockmaker whose entrepreneurial family gave their name to Terryville in Plymouth, set up his first factory in what would become Plymouth on the Niagara Brook in 1793. The first house he built in Plymouth (c. 1793) is a colonial cape, located at 731 Main Street.