Cottage Green Cottages, Enfield (1848)

February 10th, 2015 Posted in Enfield, Gothic, Houses

50 Cottage Green, Enfield

On Cottage Green in Enfield is a row of four small Gothic Cottages (46, 50, 54, 58 Cottage Green). Possibly designed by Alexander Jackson Davis, they are the survivors of a group of cottages that were erected for factory workers around the now built-over Cottage Green, which was once a grassy square with a fountain or well in the center. This is a less commonly found arrangement for worker tenements designed to appeal to skilled workers imported from abroad. They were built c. 1848 to house employees of the Enfield Manufacturing Company, a hosiery factory founded in 1845 by H. G. Thompson that failed in 1873, after which its property was purchased by the Hartford Carpet Company. A brochure entitled “Historic Enfield,” alternately claims that the houses were built c. 1830 for Scottish weavers employed at the Bigelow carpet mill. Actually, according to the nomination for the Bigelow-Hartford Carpet Mills Historic District, they were built for English-born workers and the earlier cottages, built by Thompson’s father Orrin Thompson for imported Scottish weavers, do not survive today. This type of housing recalls the “Potsdam” Cottages (featured on this last week!) built in 1859 by Samuel Colt in Hartford for imported German workers at his willow ware factory. Pictured above is the house at 50 Cottage Green in Enfield, which is presently more in need of work than its neighbors.

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