Edmund Gookin House (1724)

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017 Posted in Colonial, Houses, Norwich | No Comments »

The colonial saltbox house at 199 West Town Street in Norwich, adjacent to Bean Hill Green, is listed in assessor’s records as dating to 1724. A sign on the house gives a date of 1723 and the name John Waterman, Jr. This is presumably the John Waterman (1694-1742), who was called junior to distinguish him from his uncle of the same name. John Waterman, Jr. was one of the neighboring proprietors who re-set the green’s boundaries at a Town Meeting in 1729.

The sign next lists “Edmund Quincy Gookin, 1726.” According to Old Houses of the Antient Town of Norwich (1895), by Mary Elizabeth Perkins, Edmund Gookin, or Goodkin, (1688-1740), of Sherborn, Mass., bought the Norwichtown house of Sarah Knight (who operated a tavern) in 1722 and resided there until 1733, later purchasing a house in the Bean Hill district. Gookin was a follower of the Church of England and the first Episcopalian services in town were held at his house in 1738. According to Frances Manwaring Caulkins’ History of Norwich (1866):

The Gookin House was on the central plat of Bean Hill, “bounded southerly on the main road and easterly on the Green:” (now belonging to C. C. Williams.) The last of the Gookin family in Norwich was an ancient spinster, Miss Anna Gookin, who held a life interest in tho house for more than thirty years, and died in 1810, aged about eighty.

The last listing on the sign is “Lt. Jacob Witter’s Tavern, 1774.” Lieutenant of a militia company, Jacob Witter (1737-1798) kept a tavern/public house at Bean Hill. He was the son-in-law of Capt. Ebenezer Baldwin, who sold Witter his Bean Hill house in 1778. Witter then used that house as a tavern. An intriguing reference in the Genealogy of the Allen and Witter Families (1872), by Asa W. Allen, reads:

Jacob Witter, son of Ebenezer, married and lived on Bean Hill. He had no children and was insane.

Today the house is used as offices. Read the rest of this entry »

Stanley-Woodruff-Allen House (1752)

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017 Posted in Colonial, Houses, West Hartford | No Comments »

The red saltbox house at 37 Buena Vista Road in West Hartford was built about 1752 by Samuel Stanley for his son, also named Samuel, who married Joanna Goodman in 1754. It was later owned by members of the Woodruff and Allen families and in 1943 was purchased by West Hartford to be a caretakers house for the town’s golf course. In 1976 the West Hartford Art League began leasing the building, which was restored to become the Saltbox Gallery.

John Camp House (1710)

Thursday, April 27th, 2017 Posted in Colonial, Houses, Newington | No Comments »

The John Camp House is thought to be the oldest surviving building in Newington. Located at 301-303 West Hill Road, it was built around 1710 by either John Camp (1645-1711), who acquired the property in 1697, or his son, Captain John Camp (1675-1747), who led Newington’s first company of militia, when it was organized in 1726. At one time the house had a one-story front porch. One of the two front entrance doors was added in the nineteenth century.

Benajah Stone House (1730)

Tuesday, February 14th, 2017 Posted in Colonial, Guilford, Houses | No Comments »

The house at 2655 Long Hill Road in North Guilford was built c. 1730. The original owner was Joseph Chittenden, Jr. (died 1794), a cooper by trade. It was later owned by Benajah Stone III (1708-1757), who was married to Joseph’s sister, Mary. Benajah sold the house on March 3, 1746 to Samuel Fyler.

The Old Manse, Willington (1728)

Friday, December 2nd, 2016 Posted in Colonial, Houses, Willington | No Comments »

The Old Manse

The house at 4 Jared Sparks Road in Willington, built before 1739 (a twentieth-century owner determined a date of 1728), has been designated as the town’s oldest house. It may have been built by John Watson, one of the town’s original proprietors who owned the property in 1727. It later served as the Congregational Church parsonage until 1911.

Silas Hawkins House (1795)

Monday, November 7th, 2016 Posted in Colonial, Houses, Oxford | No Comments »

410 Quaker Farms

Silas Hawkins built the house at 410 Quaker Farms Road in Oxford c. 1795. This may have been the Silas Hawkins who was born in 1756 and died in 1844. The dormer windows were added later. A barn is visible behind the house in the image above.

William Shelley House (1730)

Friday, October 14th, 2016 Posted in Colonial, Houses, Madison | No Comments »

Shelley House

The Shelley House, at 248 Boston Post Road in Madison, dates to the late seventeenth/early eighteenth Century, with specific dates variously given that include 1709/1710 and 1730. This exceptionally well-preserved structure is a rare surviving example of a house that was clearly built in several stages, following a pattern believed to have been common at the time: starting with a one-room, two-story dwelling with a stone wall at one end (the east half), a second section added later (the west half) and finally a lean-to at the rear. Traditionally known as the William Shelley House and also known as the Stone-Shelley House, it underwent a controversial restoration c. 2008.