The Benedict House is one of the earliest and simplest houses on Stimson Avenue, platted into lots only the year before construction began on this house. Its relative modesty is often characteristic of the first houses in a new development. It holds its own in terms of scale and massing, especially with projecting porches, polygonal-plan bay windows of varying configurations, and a complex multiple-gable roof, but its exterior detailing lacks the exuberant — sometimes almost horror-vacui-like — quality of its highly ornamented neighbors. This simpler articulation probably also reflects its design and construction by a building contractor, in contrast to its slightly newer neighbors, mostly architect designed.
Benedict (1840-1915) was the proprietor of an oil dealership on South Water Street. Active in the community as a member of the Providence Art Club, organized just a few years before he built this house, he lived here until his death.
– 2009 Festival of Historic Houses Guidebook