John Davis House (1784)

December 12th, 2014 Posted in Colonial, Guilford, Houses | Comments Off

15 State Street, Guilford

At 15 State Street in Guilford is the John Davis House, built in 1784. Since the above photo was taken in 2009, the house has been repainted.

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Benjamin Corbin House (1847)

December 11th, 2014 Posted in Greek Revival, Guilford, Houses | Comments Off

Benjamin Corbin House

Built circa 1847, the Greek Revival house at 19 Fair Street in Guilford was the home of Benjamin Corbin, Jr. (1819-1884). As described in the History and Genealogy of the Descendants of Clement Corbin of Muddy River (Brookline), Mass. and Woodstock, Conn. with Notices of Other Lines of Corbins (1905), compiled by Rev. Harvey M. Lawson:

Benjamin Corbin, Jr., was a well-to-do manufacturing druggist at Guilford, Conn., from which place he was elected to the state legislature in 1858 as an American Republican. He filled numerous political offices in the town of Guilford and also in East Haven and Fair Haven, to which place he removed in 1871. He was a leading member of the Congregational Church at Guilford. He d. Sept 4, 1884, at New Haven, and was buried in the Alderbrook Cemetery, Guilford, Conn., with the other members of his family.

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Salem Congregational Church Parsonage (1856)

December 10th, 2014 Posted in Greek Revival, Houses, Salem | Comments Off


At 244 Hartford Road in Salem is the Parsonage of the Congregational Church of Salem. It is a Greek Revival house built in 1856 with modern solar panels.

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Solomon Fuller, Jr. House (1840)

December 9th, 2014 Posted in Greek Revival, Houses, Somers | Comments Off

573 Main St., Somers

The house at 573 Main Street in Somers was built around 1840. It was the home of Judge Solomon Fuller, Jr. (1817-1889). The son of Solomon S. Fuller, who was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, Solomon Fuller grew up in Somers and studied law at Chillicothe, Ohio. He practiced law in Ohio for some years before returning to Somers, where he was both a farmer and an attorney. He was elected Town Clerk and Judge of Probate, serving for four years before moving to Olmstead, Iowa, where he had a saw mill and engaged in lumbering for about two years. Then he returned to Somers, where he was again elected Town Clerk, Treasurer, and Judge of Probate, holding the positions until his death in 1889. He also served in the state General Assembly in 1863. Fuller’s son, Charles S. Fuller (b. 1855), opened the “Elmwood House” and engaged in the hotel and livery business. After his father’s death, he sold the hotel and succeeded his father in being elected to various public offices, including Judge of Probate. In 1922 Charles’s son, Ernest Solomon Fuller (1879-1946), became the third generation of the Fuller family to serve as Judge of Probate. He also served in the Connecticut General Assembly, for twenty years as a trustee of the Meriden School for Boys, and for about forty years he was a member of the Somers Board of Education, usually as its chairman.

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Warren-Pierpont House (1853)

December 8th, 2014 Posted in Greek Revival, Houses, Plymouth | Comments Off

8 North St., Plymouth

The house at 8 North Street in Plymouth Center was built c. 1835 by the Reverend Isaac Warren, a Congregational minister and founder of the Hart Female Seminary, which was located in the Storrs House across the street. A later resident of the house was George Pierpont, who served a term as town clerk in 1874. became a county commissioner in 1877 and was also a federal tax assessor. As related in the History of the Town of Plymouth, Connecticut (1895), compiled by Francis Atwater, Pierpont was the great-great-grandson of Rev. James Pierpont, the second pastor of the First Church in New Haven. He was also related to Rev. Thomas Hooker, first pastor of the First Church in Hartford, Rev. Timothy Collins, first pastor of the Litchfield church, and Caleb Humaston, one of the principal founders of the Northbury Society, now Plymouth.

The best blood of New England thus flowed in Mr. Pierpont’s veins, constituting him a member of that nobility, not of rank, wealth or title, but of intellect, of learning, of piety, of culture, and of character, which has been the foundation of New England’s greatness. The traces of this descent were manifest in Mr. Pierpont. Though denied the literary training which had characterized his earlier ancestry, he was a man of scholarly tastes, especially in the line of historical research, and kept himself well abreast of the general intelligence of the times. He was a man of strict integrity and of lofty honor, and scorned meanness and baseness in all its branches. He held at different times various offices of public trust, such as magistrate, selectman, and clerk of the town, judge of probate, and was a member of the State legislature. In 1861 he was appointed United States assistant assessor and continued to hold that office for eleven years or until it was abolished. In 1877 he was elected by the legislature county commissioner of Litchfield Countv. and re-elected to the same office in 1880. In April, 1840. Mr. Pierpont married Miss Caroline E. Beach, daughter of the late Isaac C. Beach, of Northfield, Conn., who was a devoted wife and helpmate for nearly thirtv-four years. She died January 18, 1874. His second wife was the daughter of the late J. Sherman Titus, of Washington, Conn. George Sherman Pierpont, his son, was born in Plymouth, in 1876, and is now being educated in Dr. Carleton’s family school in Bradford, Mass.

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South Britain Congregational Church (1825)

December 7th, 2014 Posted in Churches, Federal Style, Southbury | Comments Off

South Britain Congregational Church

Having made the trek to the Congregational church in Southbury each Sunday for three decades, residents of the South Britain section of town petitioned the General Assembly to have four months of winter preaching near their own homes. The South Britain Ecclesiastical Society was formed in 1766 and built a meeting house on the Green in 1770. The current South Britain Congregational Church, located at 693 South Britain Road north of the first building, was built in 1825. The interior was renovated in 1869, when the pediments over the three front doors were also changed from semi-circular fanlights to one curvilinear and two triangular pediments (more in keeping with the Greek Revival style).

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Dr. J. W. Felty House (1910)

December 6th, 2014 Posted in Hartford, Houses, Queen Anne | Comments Off

Dr. Felty House

Tomorrow is the 34th Annual Mark Twain Holiday House Tour, which features several houses in Hartford/West Hartford and the Hartford Club. One of the houses on the tour is located at 734 Prospect Avenue. A Queen Anne house, it was built in 1910 for Dr. J.W. Felty, a prominent surgeon. The Kansas City Journal of June 30, 1897 noted:

Dr. Felty Leaves Kansas.

Abilene, Kas., June 29. (Special ) Dr. J.W. Felty. vice president of the State Medical Society and of the Association of Santa Fe Surgeons, left today for Hartford, Conn., where he will locate. He has practiced in Abilene for thirteen years and is one of the best known physicians in the state

Dr. Felty‘s Hartford house was designed by Isaac Allen, Jr. and the original blueprints are now at the Connecticut Historical Society.

Mention of Dr. Felty’s work can be found in an article written by his colleague, Dr. Thomas N. Hepburn, a urologist who was the father of Katharine Hepburn, “Clinical Tests of Kidney Function” in the Yale Medical Journal of March 1912 (Vol. 18, No. 7):

Unilateral Kidney Disease. Under the heading of unilateral kidney diseases come the tubercular kidneys, the renal calculi, hydronephrosis, pyonephrosis, and pyelitis. In tests of this class of cases, ureteral catheterization, in order to compare the work of the two kidneys, is essential. It is necessary not only to make a diagnosis of the condition of the diseased kidney, but, more important still—and here is where any test that lends itself to quantitative estimation reigns supreme—it is necessary to know whether the other kidney is capable of functioning for both. A case of multiple calculi, sent me by Dr. Felty of Hartford, illustrates the point here made. From the appearance of the X-ray plate, made by Dr. Heublein, Dr. Felty was sure the kidney should be removed if possible. He wished to know how well the other kidney was functioning. With double ureteral catheterization, I found that the man excreted no phthalein from the diseased kidney, and the other kidney showed an output of 40 per cent. in one hour. Dr. Felty removed the diseased kidney, and the man made an uneventful recovery.

Dr. Felty had a second home in Florida. A notice in the Winter Park Post of September 2, 1920 states:

Dr. and Mrs. J. W. Felty with their son, Dr. A. R. Felty, of Hartford, Conn., spent three weeks here during August renovating their new home on Interlachen Avenue, purchased from Mrs, Rogers. The interior has been newly papered and other improvements added to the House and grounds. Plans are in the hands of an architect for a veranda and pergolas, which will be built when Dr. and Mrs. Felty come down in February. Dr. Felty is a distinguished surgeon of his home city and his son, who is a graduate of Yale and Johns Hopkins, is one of the house physicians in Johns Hopkins Hospital. Dr. Felty’s daughter married a brother of Mr. Woolley, son-in-law to Mr. E. W. Brewer of this place. Dr. and Mrs. Felty greatly enjoyed their visit here and declared themselves delighted with their new property, which is in the choicest residential district of town.

As mentioned in the excerpt above, Dr. J. W. Felty’s son, Dr. A. R. Felty, was a doctor at Johns Hopkins. Felty’s syndrome, a medical condition, is named for him.

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