The earliest remaining house built on the newly constructed Benefit Street, this overhanging-gable house exploits the steep topography of the site by turning the principal elevation toward the south and creating a street-level entrance to the basement. This may have allowed the original owner, a physician, to use the lowest level as his office. The basement, however, achieved far greater fame as the setting for the evil presence of H.P. Lovecraft’s 1927 story “The Shunned House.” The frame of the principal entrance, installed in the early 1970s was based on that at Shakespeare’s Head.
– 2003 Guide to Providence Architecture