The former Machine Shop of the Cheney Brothers silk mill in South Manchester was constructed in several phases beginning in 1895. Extending from Elm Street to Pine Street, the 40,000 square-foot Machine Shop was built to repair German-made velvet looms. In later years, after the silk mill closed, David Rines operated a one-man machine shop on the lower level (Forest Street side) of the building from 1975 to 1995. Located at 175 Pine Street, the building was purchased by the Manchester Historical Society in 1999 and rehabilitated to become the Manchester History Center.
The home of Frank D. Cheney, of the Cheney family of silk manufacturers, is a 1902 Colonial Revival building that faces the Great Lawn in Manchester. Frank D. Cheney was the brother of Horace B. Cheney and Howell Cheney, whose houses are on either side of their brother’s mansion on Forest Street.
The Howell Cheney House is one of the mansions of the Cheney family of silk manufacturers in Manchester. Built in 1901, the house has a Forest Street address and is visible from both that street and across the Great Lawn from Hartford Road. The red brick Howell Cheney House is a Colonial Revival building, similar to the nearby Philip Cheney House, but not as symmetrical. Howell Cheney, who would serve as secretary and director of the family firm, was strongly interested in education, particularly vocational education. In 1915, he founded the Howell Cheney Technical High School in Manchester. Howell Cheney’s house is near to those of two of his brothers, Frank D Cheney and Horace Cheney. The house is currently for sale and is featured in a video on YouTube.
One of the Manchester mansions of the Cheney family of Silk Manufacturers, the Horace B. Cheney House was built in the mid-1890s. It has a Forest Street address and is also adjacent to the “Great Lawn,” where many of the mansion are located. Horace B. Cheney was the son of Frank Woodbridge Cheney and Mary Bushnell Cheney, the daughter of Horace Bushnell. His brothers were Ward, Howell, Austin and Frank D. Cheney.
Linked to the Cheney family of silk manufacturers in Manchester, the Willard House is considered one of the Cheney Mansions–it was built for John Davenport Cheney. Located on Hartford Road in Manchester, the house was designed by Charles Adams Platt (himself a member of the Cheney family) and was constructed in 1905. It is currently utilized as the Alison Gill Lodge of the Shelter for Women.
The Seth Cheney House, on Hartford Road in Manchester, was probably built sometime in the mid-nineteenth century and was remodeled in 1910. Located northeast of the Cheney Homestead, it is one of Manchester’s Cheney Mansions. A later owner (in the 1890s) was Mrs. Emeline Cheney (widow of Arthur Cheney), who had an interest in Spiritualism and was a friend and confidant of Isabella Beecher Hooker. Today, the house is a bed-and-breakfast known as the Mansion Inn.
The George W. Cheney House, one of the Cheney mansions in Manchester, is located across Hartford Road from the Frank Cheney, Jr. House. Built around 1860, the house has a distinctive pyramidal roof, with shed dormers, and a shed-roofed front porch.