Constructed by the great-grandson of the man who built the town’s first wharf into the Providence River immediately west of this house in 1645, when this location stood at the edge of the river, this house continued the tradition of placing related maritime activities of house and wharf in close proximity. The form of the house, with its symmetrical façade, classical entrance frame, and paired interior chimneys, made this an up-to-date house for its time.
– 2003 Guide to Providence Architecture
The house survived the 1801 fire on South Main Street and is the one of the only remaining buildings of Providence’s colonial waterfront. When it was listed on the 2008 and 2009 Most Endangered Properties Lists, the highly visible house suffered from severe neglect, including a buckling façade. Additionally, the building’s position adjacent to the original I-195 and the riverfront put it at risk because it would be adjacent to highly desirable, developable land. It is in the College Hill Local Historic District, giving it some protection from demolition and removal.
Throughout 2008, the building’s condition continued to rapidly deteriorate. The structure was not secure and vandals had found several points of entry. PPS and concerned citizens notified the City of Providence and the building inspector ordered the property owner to secure the building. He complied by boarding up lower level window and doors. Nothing else was done to stabilize and protect the building.
SAVED: As of February, 2019, the exterior had been completely restored with the assistance of the Providence Revolving Fund. The foundation was stabilized, the roof and the chimneys were rebuilt, and the windows were repaired.