The building at 311 Main Street in Wethersfield was built in 1862 as the High Street School. A brick building, it replaced an earlier wooden school building, built in 1770, which stood just to the south-east. It was in this earlier building that Wethersfield’s first library, called the Union Society Library (established in 1783) was located until 1798. The former brick schoolhouse was converted into a residence in 1928 and wooden side dormers were added.
At 340-408 Leete’s Island Road in Branford is an early Greek Revival house thought to have been built before 1830 (the date carved on one of the house‘s beams) by James Palmer, although it has traditionally been associated with his son, Hezekiah Palmer. James Palmer was lost in a shipwreck in 1831. There is also a historic barn on the property.
In 1895 St. Rose Catholic parish in Meriden purchased a chapel on West Main Street from the Trinity Methodist Church to serve its expanding membership in the city’s west side. Originally dedicated to the Sacred Heart, the chapel soon became St. Joseph’s Church when a new parish was created in 1900. The site for a new church, at the corner of West Main Street and Goodwill Avenue, was purchased the following year and the cornerstone was laid on October 12, 1902. A basement chapel opened in 1903 and the completed St. Joseph Church was dedicated in early 1908.
The house at 82 Willard Avenue in Newington was built in 1859 and is an excellent example of the Italianate style. A 1955 Harvard Alumni directory lists it as the address of Harold Ingalls Dyer. The house was one of several historic properties specifically excluded from a proposed new development area centered around the recently opened CTfastrak Busway station.
As related in a section entitled “Modern Buildings of Conspicuous Design” in the 1921 book Modern Connecticut Homes and Homecrafts:
It is generally accepted that good building construction prevails in Connecticut, so it must naturally follow then that to win distinction in this field is evidence of exceptional merit, as in the instance of Mr. Lewis A. Miller of Meriden, who during a business career of about a quarter century has built, as general contractor, many structures of various kinds throughout the state that are notable for the excellence of their craftsmanship.
Much of Mr. Miller’s work has been in the line of commercial, industrial and others of the larger type of construction, yet one of the finest residences in the central part of Connecticut is of his making. This house, the home of Mr. A. L. Pelton in Winthrop Terrace, Meriden, is conspicuous for the excellence of its workmanship and materials. Designed in an adaptation of the Spanish style, the walls of the house are of white stucco on interlocking hollow tile, and the roof is of red Spanish tile which makes it particularly effective in its color combinations.
While the house’s color scheme has changed (the roof is no longer red tile), this impressive home, built c. 1918, still stands at 126 Winthrop Terrace in Meriden. The name of A. L. Pelton appears in numerous advertisements from c. 1908-1922 that appeared in such magazines as Popular Science, The World’s Work, Popular Mechanics, The Magazine of Business and The Cosmopolitan. Head of the Pelton Publishing Company, he promised to make men rich by selling them the book The Power of Will, by Frank Channing Haddock, a self-help author. Pelton also published other books such as Creed of the Conquering Chief (1915).
At 359 Hazard Avenue in Hazardville in Enfield is the former Hazardville Grammar School. The older section of the building, which was built in 1864, is in the rear. In the twentieth century (perhaps 1948?) the school lost its pedimented front pavilion and tower with a pyramidal roof, which were replaced by a two-story brick addition that became the building’s new front facade. Not used as a school after 1974, the building was later leased to the Y.W.C.A. and is today the Hazardville Daycare Center.