Nathaniel Harrison II (1692-1760) built the house at 124 Main Street in Branford in 1724. The house was once thought to have been built around 1680, at which point the land was owned by Daniel Swain, so it is listed as the Swain-Harrison House in the National Register of Historic Places. The house passed to Nathaniel Harrison III and then to his daughter Martha, who married Nicodemus Baldwin. Martha sold the house to Joseph and Lorany (Bradley) Linsley in 1800, so it is also known as the Harrison-Linsley House. The Linsleys’ daughter, Lorany Linsley Smith, lived in the house until her death in 1915 at the age of 100. The Smith family owned it until 1938, when it was acquired by the architectural historian and preservationist J. Frederick Kelly, who restored the house. Upon his death in 1947 Kelly bequeathed the house to the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, now Historic New England. Under a long-term lease, the house is maintained by the Branford Historical Society as its museum and headquarters.
Col. Eliphalet Dyer (1721-1807) was one of Connecticut’s notable figures from the period of the Revolutionary War. Born in Windham, he graduated from Yale in 1740 and in 1746 became a lawyer and a Justice of the Peace. Dyer was a founder and leader of the Susquehannah Company, which focused on settling the Wyoming Valley in northeastern Pennsylvania. During the French and Indian War, Dyer was a Lt. Colonel in the militia as part of the expedition to capture Fort Crown Point from the French in 1755 and then, as a Colonel in 1758, he led a regiment in support of Amherst’s and Wolfe’s operations in Canada. Dyer served in the Connecticut legislature from 1742 to 1784 and in the Continental Congress from 1774 to 1783 (except for 1776 and 1779). Appointed to the Council of Safety in 1775, Dyer served until it was disbanded in 1783. Dyer’s daughter Amelia was married to Joseph Trumbull, who also served in the Continental Congress. A justice of Connecticut’s superior court, Eliphalet Dyer was Chief Justice from 1789 until 1793, when he retired to Windham. His home there was a colonial house (17 North Road) built circa 1705-1715.
The house at 297 Silvermine Avenue, in the Silvermine section of Norwalk, was built around 1724. The land for the house was deeded to Jacob St. John by his father Ebenezer St. John in 1722. Jacob St. John gave the property to his only son Abraham in 1765. The lean-to, which gives the house a saltbox form, was probably built when the house was originally constructed. The house also has an original fieldstone chimney.
Rev. John Trumbull (1715-1787) became pastor of the Congregational Church in Watertown in 1739. A slave owner, Rev. Trumbull married Sarah Whitman, daughter of Rev. Samuel Whitman of Farmington, in 1744. He was also the uncle of Connecticut’s Revolutionary War governor Jonathan Trumbull. Rev. Trumbull’s first house in town, no longer standing, was a saltbox on the east side of Main Street, south of the church. In 1772 he built a larger house just next to the church. Located at 40 DeForest Street, the house became a tavern (it was Lockwoood’s Tavern and then David Woodward’s Tavern) in the 1790s and was remodeled with a large ballroom on the third floor. Shed dormer windows on the roof and Neoclassical porches at either side of the house were added after 1900.
Also known as the “Cassidy Saltbox” (it was once owned by John H. Cassidy), the house at 715 South Britain Road in the South Britain section of Southbury is an excellent example of an integral saltbox house. Probably built before 1735, it was the home, around 1750, of a Dr. Wheeler, South Britain‘s first physician. The house was owned by Rev. Bennett Tyler from 1807 to 1822. During that time, Rev. Tyler was pastor at the South Britain Congregational Church. He then became president of Dartmouth College.
John Moore (1645-1718), the eldest son of Deacon John Moore, built the central-chimney saltbox house at 390 Broad Street in Windsor in 1675. He had married Hannah Goffe in 1664. After her death he married Martha Farnsworth in 1701. By 1715 Moore had married his third wife, Mary. A description of the house from 1940 mentions that it had a new front porch and a bay window on the south. These later additions have since been removed and the house restored to a seventeenth-century appearance. Read the rest of this entry »
The center-chimney colonial saltbox house at 44 Fair Street in Guilford was built in 1762 by Noah Hodgkin, Sr. In 1770, his son, Noah Hodgkin, Jr., built the house next door at 52 Fair Street. Noah Hodgkin, Sr. died in 1783, leaving his house to his widow and his son, the Reverend Beriah Hotchkin (who had altered his name from Hodgkin to Hotchkin). Rev. Hotchkin was pastor of the Fourth Congregational Church in Guilford from 1784 until 1789, when he moved to Greenville, NY, where he served as a Presbyterian minister. In 1825, Rev. Hotchkin moved to Steuben County, NY, where he died in 1829. Descendents of his family family, later known by the name Hotchkiss, continued to occupy the house in Guilford for generations. This my 50th post for Guilford!