14 Walker St., Lenox Fire House – 1909

14 Walker St., Lenox Fire House  - c. 1909
14 Walker St., Lenox Fire House – c. 1909

From Surveys Completed 2012-2013 by the Lenox Historical Commission

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Colonial Revival style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof and is intact. It has 2-bay, 2-story, masonry construction, and brick laid up in variation of common bond (headers interspersed with stretchers every 7 courses). There is a hipped roof and a pavilion with pediment and modillions. There is marble quoining at corners of both main building and pavilion. There are 2 vehicular bays with flared marble headers and 3-part keystones; above each vehicle bay is a 3-part window with marble lintels (headers flared) with 2-o-2 windows flanking a larger 8-o-8 middle window. There is a marble foundation/water table.

Although built several years after the Town Hall, the firehouse was constructed of the same materials and continues the neoclassical style of the larger Town Hall building. The firm of Harding and Seaver designed the firehouse. George Harding had been the architect for the Town Hall. Clifford Sons, the firm in whose building the 1909 fire began, undertook the construction of the building.

Harding and Seaver Architects

George C. Harding (1867-4/23/1921)

George Harding was the senior member of the firm of Harding & Seaver, architects of several noted public buildings in the New England area. Mr. Harding was a native and life-long citizen of Pittsfield, educated in architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and had been active professionally since 1896. After working alone for a time, in 1902 he formed a partnership with Henry M. Seaver, and under the firm name acquired a wide and successful practice. His most important works include the following buildings: Museum of Natural History and Art at Pittsfield, 1907; the Y.M.C.A. Building, 1908; Lathrop Hall, 1905, and Memorial Chapel, 1914, at Colgate University, Hamilton, N.Y.; Town Hall at Lenox, Mass., 1903, and Colby Academy at New London, N.H. Mr. Harding also designed a number of fine homes, one distinguished example being the country house of former Senator Crane at Dalton, Mass.” [1]

From MACRIS List – Sept. 16, 2008

Inv. NoProperty NameStreetCity/TownYear Built
LEN.25Lenox Town Hall6 Walker StLenox1901
LEN.296Slater, William House249 Under Mountain RdLenox1901
LEN.23Curtis Hotel6 Main StLenox1829
LEN.19Hagyard, Frank C. Store36 Main StLenox1910
LEN.100Hegeman, Annie May House61 Cliffwood StLenox1925
LEN.26Lenox Fire House14 Walker StLenox1909
LEN.29Peters, Leonard C. Block46-50 Walker StLenox1917

 

Henry M. Seaver (3/6/1873 –

The Edward A. Jones Memorial Building was designed by Pittsfield architect Henry M. Seaver. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1897 and began his own architectural firm in 1901.[2] By 1903 he had entered into a partnership with George C. Harding that lasted until Harding’s death in 1921.[3] During that period the firm designed the YMCA Building in Pittsfield; the Chapel at Colgate University in central New York; the Museum of Natural History and Art in Pittsfield; the Colby Academy in New London, New Hampshire; and the Lenox Town Hall.[4] After Harding’s death in 1921, Seaver kept the office open through 1933, during which time he designed the Jones building at the House of Mercy. Other buildings for which he was responsible in this period include the R.J. Flick Residence; an addition to the Berkshire Life Building in Pittsfield; and an addition to the Pittsfield Boys Club Building. He was also an associate architect on the Pittsfield High School Building.[5]

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:

The Lenox Fire Department was formed and this firehouse was constructed as a direct result of the Easter fire of 1909. On the night of April 10-11 of that year, a fire broke out in the Clifford block on Main Street, killing six people and eventually spreading to other buildings, destroying much of the block between Main, Church, Housatonic, and Franklin Streets. Lenox at that time had only a small, poorly organized and ill-equipped volunteer fire department, and help had to be summoned from Pittsfield, Lee and Lenox Dale. Since the 1890’s the town officials had been warned by fire insurance companies that fire protection in Lenox was inadequate, but the few attempts to organize a fire department failed due to lack of support from the town’s most prominent citizens. The day after the 1909 fire a committee on fire protection was formed, although some commented that it was like locking the barn door after the horse had been stolen.

At a special town meeting held June 16, 1909, the committee recommended the formation of a fire company, and steps were taken to supply hydrants and adequate water pressure. Money was appropriated later that year for the purchase of apparatus, and sites considered for the engine house. After several sites were investigated and rejected, it was voted to erect a new firehouse on the lot just east of Town Hall, and $11,000 was appropriated for its construction.

It is currently owned by the Town of Lenox and serves as the Lenox Firehouse.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

The Berkshire Eagle April 12-14, 1909

Lenox Town Reports, 1909

Lenox Assessor’s Database

[1] Henry F. Withey, AIA and Elsie Rathburn Withey, Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (Deceased)(Los Angeles: Hennessey & Ingalls, Inc., 1970) p. 264.

[2] Berkshire Athenaeum/Pittsfield Library, History Department, Architects file.

[3] Henry F. Withey, AIA and Elsie Rathburn Withey, Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (Deceased)(Los Angeles: Hennessey & Ingalls, Inc., 1970) p 264.

[4] Massachusetts Cultural Resource Inventory System (MACRIS) online at: <http://mhc-macris.net>

[5] Berkshire Athenaeum/Pittsfield Library, History Department, Architects file.

36 Walker St., Leonard C. Peters Block – 1917

36 Walker St, Peters Block - 1917
36 Walker St., Leonard C. Peters Block – 1917

From Surveys Completed 2012-2013 by the Lenox Historical Commission

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Tudor Revival style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof, and is intact. This structure has 5-bay, brick & wood framed construction and a hipped roof with shed-roofed dormers. There is brick cladding on the 1st floor laid up in English bond with stucco with half-timbering on the upper story, and wood shingles on the dormer sides. The articulated 2nd floor overhangs the front façade, and is supported by large wood brackets with sets of 3 windows flanking a center bay w/4 windows – all 4-o-4. There are leaded 12-light transoms over 3-part storefront windows. The recessed Left side ell has a gable roof which is 2-bays wide & has a steeply pitched canopy over the entry to the 2nd floor. The door has 3 vertical panels with decorative wood graining and a 6-light leaded glass window; pent between the 2nd floor and the attic level in the Left side ell. There is a 1-story rear ell and a rear wall chimney between the main house and the rear ell. The foundation is concrete.

Harding and Seaver Architects

George C. Harding (1867-4/23/1921)

“Senior member of the firm of Harding & Seaver, architects of several noted public buildings in the New England area. Mr. Harding was a native and life-long citizen of Pittsfield, educated in architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and had been active professionally since 1896. After working alone for a time, in 1902 he formed a partnership with Henry M. Seaver, and under the firm name acquired a wide and successful practice. His most important works include the following buildings: Museum of Natural History and Art at Pittsfield, 1907; the Y.M.C.A. Building, 1908; Lathrop Hall, 1905, and Memorial Chapel, 1914, at Colgate University, Hamilton, N.Y.; Town Hall at Lennox, Mass., 1903, and Colby Academy at New London, N.H. Mr. Harding also designed a number of fine homes, one distinguished example being the country house of former Senator Crane at Dalton, Mass.” [1]

From MACRIS List – Sept. 16, 2008

Inv. NoProperty NameStreetCity/TownYear Built
LEN.25Lenox Town Hall6 Walker StLenox1901
LEN.296Slater, William House249 Under Mountain RdLenox1901
LEN.23Curtis Hotel6 Main StLenox1829
LEN.19Hagyard, Frank C. Store36 Main StLenox1910
LEN.100Hegeman, Annie May House61 Cliffwood StLenox1925
LEN.26Lenox Fire House14 Walker StLenox1909
LEN.29Peters, Leonard C. Block46-50 Walker StLenox1917

 

Henry M. Seaver (3/6/1873 –

The Edward A. Jones Memorial Building was designed by Pittsfield architect Henry M. Seaver. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1897 and began his own architectural firm in 1901.[2] By 1903 he had entered into a partnership with George C. Harding that lasted until Harding’s death in 1921.[3] During that period the firm designed the YMCA Building in Pittsfield; the Chapel at Colgate University in central New York; the Museum of Natural History and Art in Pittsfield; the Colby Academy in New London, New Hampshire; and the Lenox Town Hall.[4] After Harding’s death in 1921, Seaver kept the office open through 1933, during which time he designed the Jones building at the House of Mercy. Other buildings for which he was responsible in this period include the R.J. Flick Residence; an addition to the Berkshire Life Building in Pittsfield; and an addition to the Pittsfield Boys Club Building. He was also an associate architect on the Pittsfield High School Building.[5]

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE

This building was built as a combination commercial and residential structure, with retail space on the first floor and an apartment below. In 1918, it housed an antique shop and the first Lenox savings Bank, with the owner of the building, Leonard C. Peters, residing upstairs. The Peters family has retained ownership of the building, and although the businesses have changed the commercial/residential mix has stayed the same.

Eventually the antique shop was replaced by a medical office, and in 1957/8 the bank and medical office were replaced by Talbot’s Dress Shop. On July 31, 1979 Talbots The, Inc. took over ownership.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES

Jane Peters Heathfield

Registry of Deeds (Book 384, p.244)

[1] Henry F. Withey, AIA and Elsie Rathburn Withey, Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (Deceased)(Los Angeles: Hennessey & Ingalls, Inc., 1970) p. 264.

[2] Berkshire Athenaeum/Pittsfield Library, History Department, Architects file.

[3] Henry F. Withey, AIA and Elsie Rathburn Withey, Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (Deceased)(Los Angeles: Hennessey & Ingalls, Inc., 1970) p 264.

[4] Massachusetts Cultural Resource Inventory System (MACRIS) online at: <http://mhc-macris.net>

[5] Berkshire Athenaeum/Pittsfield Library, History Department, Architects file.

 

42 Walker St., Richard Walker House – 1837

42 Walker St., Richard Walker House - 1837

From Surveys Completed 2012-2013 by the Lenox Historical Commission 

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Greek Revival style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof, and is intact. It has 3-bay, and wood framing. The front gable roof–temple has a front with corner pilasters and a hefty entablature. There is a brick center chimney and a 4-bay Left side ell, 1 bay deep, with a brick rear wall chimney. The recessed entry has a flat-roofed entrance porch with 4 fluted Doric columns (replacements) and pilasters, and 2 smaller fluted columns set back with the entry. The door surround has 2/3rds-length sidelights of geometric design. The front door is in tact. There is an enclosed glazed porch along the front of the Left side ell. There are authentic wood window blinds and some original 2-o-2 and 6-o-6 windows. The foundation is marble.

*Additional Major Alterations: porch and wing added, side porch enclosed in glass.

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:

The first inhabitant of this house, Richard Walker, was a local farmer. His daughter married Dr. E.P. Hale, a physician who served on the Town Board of Health from 1890-1898. Dr. Hale and his wife lived in this house, which also served as his office. Dr. Hale was also president of the Lenox Savings Bank. In the early 1900’s, the Misses Brooks acquired the property and ran a rooming house and tea room. They also used it as Headquarters for the British Relief effort in WW I. It was purchased by William G. Clifford on November 20, 1959 and then by John D. Foulds on May 3, 2002.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

Registry of Deeds

Lenox by Olive A Colton 1945

Town Reports, Lenox, Massachusetts

County Atlas of Berkshire, Massachusetts 1876

35 Walker St., Henry W. Bishop Cottage, 1885

35 Walker St., Henry W. Bishop Cottage
35 Walker St., Henry W. Bishop Cottage

From Surveys Completed 2012-2013 by the Lenox Historical Commission

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Colonial Revival style building has two stories and a slate roof. The structure has been altered. The building has 3-bay, wood framing, and a hipped roof with slate shingles. There are modillions on the eaves, 1 large brick interior chimney, and 1 large Left sidewall chimney. There are 3 gabled dormers on the front, 1 gabled dormer on the Left side, and corner pilasters.   There is also a large 2-story hipped roof rear ell with a 1-story extension wrapping around it. There are some intact 6-o-1 windows, 2 Doric columns at the opening to the recessed entrance (once a freestanding entrance porch), and a gabled rear entry on the left side of the rear ell (added before 1911).

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:  

1854 Clark Map labeled house as “H. W. Taft” then 1876 Beers Map labeled it as “Mrs. Wm. Thompson” (demolished); current house first depicted on 1893 Sanborn Map.

This is the earlier of two houses owned as summer cottages by Florence Bishop, in 1885. The cottages were generally rented to summer visitors, or used to house overflow from the Bishop’s estate, Interlaken (dem.). After its purchase in 1949, by Karl and Sophie Grosser, this house became a restaurant and Inn.

October 8, 1874 built by Henry W. Bishop, sold to Ellen L. Thompson, then bought by William Curtis.

October 17, 1885 Florence Bishop purchased from William Curtis.

January 31, 1921 Florence V.C. Parsons from Cortland L. Bishop.

February 14, 1921 Charles L. Slattery from Florence V.C. Parsons

July 16, 1926 Katherine McDonald from Beatrice B. Bishop

October 21, 1945 Joseph F. Deely from Mary McDonald

November 22, 1949 purchased by Louis C. Ardel and Albert Blaser.

___________, 1949 purchased by Karl and Sophie Grosser and run as a restaurant called Chef Karl’s.

April 29, 1963, purchased by John and Ann Pedretti and run as a restaurant called The Toby Jug.

October 7, 1977, purchased by James DeMayo and run as a restaurant and inn called The Candlelight Inn.

September 1985, purchased by Robert Artig and Marsha Heller and run as a restaurant and inn called The Candlelight Inn.

August 19, 2002, purchased by John M. Hedgecock.

September 19, 2002, purchased by Rebecca M. Hedgecock.

August 31,m 2004, purchased by William G. C. Dakin.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

1854 Clark Map, 1876 Beers Map, 1893 Sanborn Map

Registry of Deeds, Pittsfield, MA

Atlas of the Garden Spots of Berkshire, Barnes & Jenks, 1894

Atlas of Berkshire County, Massachusets, Barnes & Farnham, 1904

Local histories

Lenox Assessor’s database 2012

45 Walker St., David Wolf Bishop House, 1895

45 Walker St., David Wolf Bishop House - 1895
45 Walker St., David Wolf Bishop House – 1895

From Surveys Completed 2012-2013 by the Lenox Historical Commission

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Colonial Revival style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof, and has been significantly altered. This structure has 3-bays, a center entrance, a wood frame, and a hipped roof. There is a shallow entrance pavilion with a pediment, a fanlight attic window, modillions & dentils. There is a 3-part window with 2-o-1 windows flanking larger 6-o-1 on the 2nd floor of the pavilion. There are pedimented dormers–2 front, 2 right side, and 1 left side. There are 2 large brick interior chimneys and a full front porch which has a projecting center section aligned with the pediment above. There is a set of 3 Doric columns at the corners of the porch’s center section and a millwork railing. The recessed front entrance has door surround with sidelights; the front door is intact. The windows are 6-o-1 with molded window headers. There is a 1-story faceted bay window on the left side, and a 2-story rear ell with a hipped roof, and a rear porch with a hipped roof and a hooded entry on the left side. There is a semi-circle driveway in front yard centered on entrance.

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE: 

This is one of two cottages built by the Bishop family (the other is 35 Walker Street). Both were built as guest cottages by the Bishops, who owned several large estates in Lenox. This house was built by Florence V.C. Bishop (who later became Mrs. White through her second marriage) and was given to David Wolf Bishop, who never lived in the cottage. In 1921, it was purchased by Charles Lewis Slatterly, the Bishop of Western Massachusetts, who in turn sold cottage #2 to James and Maude Reger. In 1927 the house was acquired by Alice Regnier. In 1957 the cottage was inherited by Clement J. and Hilaire Regnier. On February 25, 1994 it was acquired by Charles T. Schulze.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

Registry of Deeds

Conversations with Mr. Clement Regnier

Atlas of Garden Spots of Berkshire, Barnes and Jenks, 1894

Atlas of Berkshire County, Massachusetts, Barnes and Farnham, 1904

Lenox Assessor’s database 2012

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Chapel, 1896

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church Parish House - 1896
88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church Parish House – 1896

From Form B’s Completed by Lenox Historical Commission 2012-2013

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Romanesque style building has one story, with a red slate roof, and is intact. It has a cruciform plan styled after a Norman church. The masonry construction is of rock-faced granite with a dressed granite trim. It has a front gable roof with parapet walls, and wings with cross gables, also having parapet walls. There is a tall stone side wall chimney behind the Right side wing and the front entry porch on the East side is in the form of a semi-circle with Roman-arched openings, 7 sets of columns & 2 sets of pilasters, each with a different capital cornice with reverse crenellated molding. Semi-circular steps and stoop lead up to the porch. There is an arched door surround with 2 granite columns and a curvilinear carving on the stone header & plain stones on outer band. There are Roman-arched double entry doors with elaborate metal strap hinges. A small rose window is in the gable peak above the porch and small rectangular attic windows in the cross wings. Projecting from the Southwest gable end is a shallow chancel with a slightly lower gable roof. Windows in pairs & sets of 3 are Roman-arched and 2 flank the Northwest side entry. The foundation is of stone.

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE  

Trinity Church was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on February 26, 1996.

In 1896, John E. Parsons, a wealthy New York attorney. gave Trinity church this handsome Parish House in memory of his late wife, Mrs. Mary Dumesnil Parsons, who had died the same year (1896). The Parsons, who also lived in New York City and Rye, N.Y., had been summering in Lenox since 1871.

The Parish House was built to resemble a small Norman church and to be consistent with Trinity Church. Maxfield Parrish (1870-1966) was selected to paint the over-mantel for the parlor, which consisted of two panel oil paintings on wood. Parsons also donated handsome directional markers to the Town of Lenox. One is on the corner of the property in the form of an obelisk stone marker. They were erected in Lenox in 1892, but the marker which is now on the Trinity Parish property was not moved there until 1927.

The Parish House has seen use as a church school, for youth group meetings, AA, and recreational and social activities.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES

Trinity Church, Lenox. John Allen Gable,1966.

Assesors Data Base.

Interviews with Mrs. Robert Whitman, wife of the pastor of the church.

National Register of Historic Places

Gable, John Allen. The Goodness that Doth Crown Our Days, A History of Trinity Parish, 1993.

Palmer, C.J. History of Trinity Church, 1763-1895 , Cambridge,1895.

Tucker, G.H. History of Lenox, 1936, Republished by Lenox Library, 1992.

81 Walker St., William C. Wharton House, 1885

Pine Acre
Pine Acre

From Form B’s Completed by Lenox Historical Commission 2012-2013

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Queen Anne style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof and has been altered. There is a 7-bay, center entrance. The building has wood frame construction with a hipped roof and 2 large brick interior chimneys. The first floor has wood clapboard siding and shingle cladding on the second floor. The upper story flares out at bottom over the first floor. Two pedimented shallow pavilions flank the entrance porch. The entrance porch has a front gable roof, 6 turned posts, and scroll sawn braces. There are 2 stories of balconies above entrance porch (one at the 2nd floor and one at the attic level. There are 13-light Queen Anne-style windows with small square panes surrounding larger square pane in the middle. LANDSCAPE: there is a semi circular driveway in the front yard centered on the front entrance.

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:

On November 19, 1856, Ira T. Bangs sold this property to Elizabeth and Wickham Hoffman. The Hoffman’s sold to George A. Winchell, July 12, 1871. George A. Winchell sold to Nancy W. Rogers on October 3, 1884.

 

Mrs. M. E. Rogers of Philadelphia had this house built in 1885, for use as a summer residence. By 1890 the house had been rented for the season to John Burrell, and in 1892 it was sold to Nancy W. Wharton (Mrs. William C.) who summered here with her daughter. Mrs. Wharton’s son, Edward, was married to novelist Edith Wharton who was to become one of the most illustrious residents of Lenox. After spending several summers in Newport, Edith Wharton, displeased with both the climate and the lack of intellectual life there, came to Lenox. She stayed at “Pine Acre”, home of her Mother-in law and Sister-in-law, who were abroad at the time. She was very impressed with Lenox that she returned to “Pine Acre” the following summer and, in February of 1902, returned to Lenox to look for a house site of her own. While looking for the site she stayed at the Curtis Hotel. She spent one last summer at “Pine Acre” in 1902, while her house, “The Mount”, was under construction.

 

Mrs. William C. Wharton continued to stay at “Pine Acre” for several summers until her death in August of 1909 in Lenox. The house was purchased by William J. and Mary E. Merrick through the estate of William C. Wharton in 1929. In February 23, 1946, the house was sold to Mrs. Charles Dugan and Mary Dugan, who converted it to an inn. On December 27, 1963, the Dugans sold to William J. and Lois G. Sununu. In October 1969 the Sununu’s sold to Helen L. Fillio. Helen Fillio sold to John C. and Ida M. Connors on March 1, 1971. Connors sold to James W. Kelly on March 15, 1978. Kelly, who created and ran “Kelly’s Irish Pub,” sold the property to Lewis and Inna T. Rubin on February 2, 1979. Rubin sold to Robert P. Butler, who ran an inn on the site called “Three Gables Inn”, on June 7, 1982. Butler sold to Mary and Francis Newton on April 18, 1986. Newton changed the name from “Three Gables Inn” to “The Gables Inn”. In 2007, Frank Newton converted “The Gables” into 5 condominiums. The current owners of the condominiums are: Elliott R Morss, Harvey Siegel and Christine Hoppus, Mark A. Peeler, Terence G. McInerney, and Francis Newton.

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

 

Registry of Deeds, Pittsfield, MA 150.538; 211.171; 257.427; 281.178; 448.130; 520.530; 776.249; 882.246; 902.394; 1001.585; 1016.585; 1059.129; 1144.286.

Edith Wharton – A Biography R.W.B. Lewis (N.Y. Harper & Row, 1975) page 93

Bibliography and/or references (such as local histories, deeds, assessor’s records, early maps, etc.)

Recollections of Frank Newton, June 21, 2012

Lenox Assessor’s database 2012

91 Walker St. Col. R.S. Walker House 1895

91 Walker St., Col. R.S. Oliver House 1895

From Form B’s Completed by Lenox Historical Commission 2012-2013

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Colonial Revival style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof and has been minimally altered. There is a 3-bay center entrance. The house is wood frame with a gambrel roof and dentil band on the cornice. There are three (3) front dormers with six (6) over six (6) windows. The center dormer has an arched roof and flanking dormers have pediments. There are 3 large brick chimneys, one (1) on each end-wall and one (1) interior. The siding is wood clapboard. There is a first story semi-circular entrance portico with fluted Ionic columns and a balustrade atop. The door surround has an arched transom & sidelights. First story porches on both R & L sides have Doric columns and millwork railings. The second story rear ell has a hipped roof & second story gabled extension with six (6) over one (1) windows. The French doors are flanked by small windows on second floor front facade which is centered above the entrance. There are many authentic window blinds. LANDSCAPE: the semi-circular driveway is centered on the front entrance

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:

This property owned by William T. Walker and his wife was sold to Edwin Spencer in 1852. Mrs. Marion R. Oliver built this house on the site of an earlier house, built by Edwin (Edmund?) Spencer in 1852, and purchased by Mrs. Marion Oliver (wife of Col. R.S. Oliver) and Mrs. Virginia Struthers (wife of John Struthers) in 1874. Mrs. Oliver, a resident of Albany, New York, spent summers in the earlier house for a time, but by 1886 had rented it out. Both stylistic evidence and an 1894 mortgage indicate that Mrs. Oliver had the original house demolished and a more fashionable one built in its place. In 1896 the property was sold to Mr. and Mrs. John Struthers, frequent summer visitors to Lenox. The Struthers’ christened the house “Wynnstay” and used it for many years as a summer residence. It was later sold to the Bonner family, and then again in 1937 to the Gieses.

Donald D. O’Brien purchased the property in 1968 and sold the property to Stanley E. Rosen in 1999. The Rosen’s converted the barn to six guest rooms in 2000 and added an extension to the barn in 2005. The rooms are rented under the name of “Hampton Inn”.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

Registry of Deeds, Pittsfield, MA 135.517; 181.7; 222.549; 298.138; 397.3; 395.642; 476.502; 519.481; 565.162; 622.198; 834.289; 859.302; 1664.215.

Lenox Massachusetts Shire Town, David H. Wood p.194
Lenox Assessor’s database 2012

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Rectory 1892

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Rectory
88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Rectory

From Form B’s Completed by Lenox Historical Commission 2012-2013

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Shingle style building has two stories with an asphalt shingle roof, and has been minimally altered. It has 3-bays and is oriented with the front facade facing the rear of church. It has an irregular bldg footprint with wood frame & stone construction. There are multiple hipped roof sections with double-bracketed eaves. The hipped dormers, 2 on the front and 1 in the rear, all have paired 4-over-1 windows & brackets at the outer corners of cornice. There are 2 stone chimneys,1 front wall and 1 interior in the recessed Left-side ell. There is stone and wood shingle cladding. The Left side of house has shingle cladding on 1st floor as well as the 2nd floor. The lower edge of the upper story flares out over 1st floor. There is a 2-story polygonal hipped-roof tower on the Right (South) side with Roman-arched window openings on 1st floor. The arches spring from short engaged columns. There are matching paired arched windows on 1st floor Right facade behind the tower. There is a large front porch with a stone kneewall along the front supporting 2 Doric columns. The sides have large Roman-arched entrances accessed by stairways on either side, and a balcony with millwork railing atop. There is a hipped porch roof supported by a single Doric column behind and Left of the main porch. A rear entry porch is recessed into rear Left corner of the house. There is an Arts & Crafts pane pattern in a leaded glass window, with 7-over-1 upper sashes with 4 small square panes above a larger pane, and flanked by 2 vertical panes. Other windows have 9-light casements with 8 small panes over 1 large pane. There is a stone foundation.

 

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:

 

In 1892, the Parish constructed the Rectory for $31,586.72 with donations given by many of the same wealthy summer residents who contributed to the construction of the Church. The new Rectory was dedicated by the new Bishop of Massachusetts, the Right Reverend Phillips Brooks (1835-1893), who visited Lenox in the summers. Brooks, author of “O Little town of Bethlehem”, was the best known Bishop of Massachusetts and was rector of Trinity Church, Boston, when that was constructed by Richardson in the 1870s.

Listed on National Register of Historic Places February 26, 1996, together with Church and Parish Hall.

Excerpt from Trinity Church Lenox; John Allen Gable, 1966: “On November 12, 1892 a new rectory had been dedicated next to Trinity Church by frequent summer visitor Phillips Brooks, the Bishop of Massachusetts, author of “0 Little Town of Bethlehem”, and one of the most beloved Christian preachers of the era. The spacious Victorian mansion, complete with servants quarters (which have not seen domestics for many a year now), was built at a cost of $31,586.72. The funds were largely given by the same parishioners who donated to the building of Trinity Church. The largest donors were Mr. and Mrs. John S. Barnes, David W. Bishop, Mrs. C.G. Haven, Mr. and Mrs. George H. Morgan, Charles Lanier, Mr. and Mrs. John E. Parsons, Mrs. William Douglass Sloane, Mr. and Mrs. Anson Phelps Stokes, and Mrs. Matilda White. Furniture for the rectory was given by a number of donors including Mrs. Stokes, Mrs. Haven and Mrs. Lanier. This building, of course, still serves the rector and his family…it boasts the largest bathroom in the Diocese…”

(Trinity Church, Lenox, Gable 1966)

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

The National Register of Historic Places

Gable, John Allen. The Goodness that Doth Crown Our Days, A History of Trinity Parish, 1993.

Palmer, C.J. History of Trinity Church, 1763-1895 , Cambridge,1895.

Tucker, G.H. History of Lenox, 1936, Republished by Lenox Library, 1992.

Trinity Church Lenox; John Allen Gable, 1966.

New England Magazine, October 1900, vol. 23, pp. 192-211.

Assessors Data Base.

 

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church 1885-1888

 

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church - 1885-1888
88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church – 1885-1888

From Form B’s Completed by Lenox Historical Commission 2012-2013

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Romanesque style building has two stories, a red slate roof and is intact. It has asymmetrically organized facades with an irregular footprint. The main section (nave & narthex) has a 3-bay wide front & is 6 bays deep. The masonry construction of rockfaced dolomite is laid up in a random pattern with brownstone used for trim. The gable roof (45′ to peak) with parapet walls at the gable ends covers the nave and narthex sections. There is clay tile roofing throughout. The 3-story square tower located Left (North) and forward of nave has a dentiled band at the cornice, Roman-arch openings in the belfry with bulbous metal balconettes at each, and a hipped roof with a grey slate band and an elaborately trimmed oculus on each side. It is capped by a copper tip and cross. The tower is connected to main church by a porte-cochere with a gable roof and Roman-arched opening. There are Roman-arched stained glass windows and a large Tiffany rose window in the gable peak of the front (West) façade. The polygonal narthex with a hipped roof on the East facade has double windows (stained glass & plain). There is an exposed stone false chimney on Right side, South East corner that surrounds a Roman-arched window. A cross gabled transept (chapel) extends to the North from the nave with rear cross-gabled extensions house the choir room; a shallow gable-fronted entrance, with paired Roman-arched windows, extends from the South West corner of the narthex. OBJECTS: a naturalistic rock monument with a bronze plaque, “The ‘Gramps’ Howland Field” 1961” (contribution); an obelisk signpost at the corner with directional arrows, poem & sundial c.1910 (contribution).

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE:

The church is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, February 26, 1996. National Register nomination correctly places the church in the Romanesque style category. The building designed by Charles Follen McKim (McKim, Mead & White) was commissioned by Trinity Church. McKim’s designs went through four sets of revisions followed by a fifth set, modified by Col. Auchmuty with the help of James Renwick (Renwick, Auchmuty & Sand). This process took four years and the final plan implemented was called the “porch plan”, which survived only in Auchmuty’s report, unlike McKim’s four plans, which are preserved in the Parish records. Auchmuty’s additions and changes included the change of the porch entrance into a narthex for inclement weather, the large rose window in the west gable peak, the use of local rockface bluestone in place of fieldstone, and the removal of irregular string courses and dilapidated buttresses. Auchmuty was in charge of constructing the building, raised the funds, and was the largest contributor. Thus, a memorial plaque names him as the architect of the church.

The cornerstone was laid in 1885 by Reverend Justin Field, assisted by the former US President, Chester A. Arthur.

Many other noted craftsmen worked on various parts of the church , such as Tffany and Co. which created many of the original windows; William Brockelsdy of Hartford who designed the chancel; and Bartlett Bros. who laid the main roof.

In June of 1888, the congregation moved from its original site on Church Street to the new Trinity Church at the intersection of Walker and Kemball Streets. The consecration was performed by Bishop Paddock of Massachusetts and Bishop Potter of New York, with the choir from the Church of the Advent in Boston, the Rector, Reverend Justin Field, and the congregation (largely made up of summer residents who had donated generously to the construction of the church). The old church was memorialized in the new by relocation of memorial plaques and reuse of the pews.

In 1899, there was a choir Room and Sacristy added to the church. It was donated as a memorial to Sarah L. Lawrence, daughter of Charles and Sarah Lanier, who had donated much to the construction of the church as well.

Trinity Church had a congregation drawn primarily from the wealthy summer residents of Lenox, and this building was funded by them. The list of donors reads like a “Who’s Who of 1888”. Included are the Misses Appleton, R.T. and Mrs. Auchmuty, J.S. Barnes, D.W. Bishop, Mrs. Biddle, Miss Biddle, W.H. Bradford, H.W. Braem, Mrs. Ellison, Mrs. Flint, George W. Folsom, C. Field, the Misses Furness, R. Goodman, Mrs. Green, Mrs. C.G. Haven, Miss E.S. Jones, Mrs J.I. Kane, A.C. Kingsland, Mrs. Kneeland, George Kneeland, Mrs Kuhn, C. Lanier, Miss Mason, Mrs. W.B. Ogden, R.S. Oliver, J.E. Parsons, Mrs. Edward Parsons, Miss Parish, Mrs. M.O. Roberts, W.R. Robeson, J.O. Sergeant, Mrs. W.D. Sloane, Mrs. R.G. Shaw, Mrs. I.F. Schenck, Miss Taintor, John Thompson, and R.C. Winthrop, Jr..

Trinity Church, thanks to its illustrious congregation, acquired a reputation outside of Lenox and the Berkshires. A 1900 article in the New England Magazine stated that, “the church is visited by pilgrims from far and wide; for few cities can boast churches of greater beauty”. The same article offers another reason for trinity Church becoming a stop on a sightseeing tour; “At the Lenox Episcopal Church in the summer one can see more wealth represented than in any other church in the land, lest it be Trinity in Newport”. Trinity Church also had a stable year-round congregation, and even after the wealthy cottagers stopped coming to Lenox the congregation remained active in the community.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES:

Trinity Church, Lenox. John Allen Gable, 1966.

Assessor’s records.

New England Magazine, October 1900. Vol. 23, pp. 192-211

National Register of Historic Places, February 26, 1996.

Lenox Assessor’s database 2012

first trinity_NEW
Drawing of Original Trinity Church on Church St. Lenox from David Woods “Lenox Massachusetts Shiretown.”
27 Church St., First Episcopal Church - c. 1816
27 Church St., First Episcopal Church – c. 1816
88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church Parish House - 1896
88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Church Parish House – 1896

More Information on Trinity Chapel

88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Rectory
88 Walker St., Trinity Episcopal Rectory

More Information on Trinity Rectory