For the Fourth of July, here is a saltbox house at 16 Tolland Green in Tolland that was built in 1776. One known resident of the house was a man named Winters. According to Around and About the Tolland Green (2002) by Christine Gray, he was a proprietor of the County House, the hotel attached to the Tolland County Jail, whose wife refused to live at the jail.
The house at 94 State Street in Guilford was once the single-story residence of Ambrose Benton (1769-1847). He married Mary Evarts in 1790. The original first floor dates to 1798 and the house’s second story was added in 1909.
It is possible that the “Great Room” or kitchen, and “the Lentoo” of the old Fitch or Knight house were added in 1734 to the house, then erected by Sylvanus Jones, on land purchased of Andre Richard, but of this we have no positive proof.
Sylvanus Jones (b. 1707), was the son of Caleb Jones, one of the first settlers of Hebron, Ct., and his wife Rachel, daughter of John Clark of Farmington, Ct. He married in 1730 Kesiah, daughter of Isaac and Elizabeth (Curtis) Cleveland, and died in 1791. He had eight children, and at his death, his son, Ebenezer, becomes the owner of the house and land.
Ebenezer Jones (b. 1744), married in 1765, Elizabeth Rogers, and had three daughters, one of whom, Lucy (b. 1766), marries Henry J. Cooledge, and another, Rachel (b. 1771), becomes in 1793 the wife of Asa Lathrop, Jun. Louisa, daughter of Lucy (Jones) Cooledge, marries in 1832 Charles Avery of New London, and her daughter, Mrs. Harriet Robinson, now owns and occupies the house.
We do not know the occupation of Sylvanus, but Ebenezer was a cooper, and Mr. Miner pictures him “with his ads and double driver, holding it in the middle, and playing it rapidly on the empty barrel, as he drives the hoop, sounding a reveille to the whole neighborhood regular as the strains of Memnon.” His shop stood south of the house and a little back from the street.
The house at 968 Main Street North was constructed sometime before 1771 (perhaps as early as 1716?), when the property was acquired by Elijah Booth from Edward Hinman. Booth was a cabinetmaker and in 1806 his dwelling house, joiners shop and barn were acquired by Eli Hall. The house remained in the Hall family until it was sold by Hall’s daughter, Lydia Ann Hall, who married Sherman B. Warner, sold it in 1892. From 1915 to 1918 the house was one of five, including the Peter Parley House, that were were owned as a seasonal estate by Robert and Antonia Treupel of Mamaroneck, NY. They sold their houses to the Lutheran Inner-Mission Society of Connecticut, which sold the Booth House to Delia Hunihan in 1933. She lived there with her husband John until 1959. Restoration of the house was begun by its next owner, Mark Messier, and was continued by Carl and Elizabeth Kamphausen, who bought it in 1962.
One of the five oldest houses in Connecticut is the Bushnell Farm house at 1445 Boston Post Road in Old Saybrook. It began as a two room, one story, thatch roofed post and beam house built by the Elder Joshua Bushnell. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places as the Elisha Bushnell House and J. Frederick Kelly, in his classic Early Domestic Architecture of Connecticut (1924), calls it the Older Bushnell House. The house was expanded over the two centuries that the Bushnell family owned it. The property has a number of outbuildings, including an early eighteenth-century barn, a loom house (the Bushnells were both farmers and weavers) and a building referred to as the slave house. Maintained as a private residence in an excellent state of preservation, the property is often opened to schools, historical societies and the Connecticut River Museum Summer Camp.
At the northwest corner of the Boston Turnpike at 21 Bread & Milk Street in Coventry is a house built circa 1735 by John Wilson (1702-1773). After his death in 1773, the house passed to his son William (1729-1819), who married Sarah Rust, and his grandson Jacob (1749-1826), who married Hannah Dimmock in 1771. Jacob Wilson operated a tavern at the house from 1773 until 1817, when he sold the property to Joshua Frink.