~ Continued ~
18. Adjacent to Ft.
Wilkins is the third building to house the
Congregational Church in Pittsfield. The first on
this site was a wooden structure erected in 1839. In
December of 1871 quite a commotion was caused when the
bell fell from the belfry while it was being tolled for
Sunday services. Considerable damage was done but no one
was hurt. The bell and the entire building, were
destroyed by fire in 1876. This brick, High Victorian
Gothic structure with needle spire was immediately
erected in its place.
Union Block 1840-70, Congregational Church 1839-76
Next on the Trail is the Queen Anne / Commercial style
Union Block also erected after the disastrous
fire of Valentine's Day 1876. It was in this building
that in 1894 one of Pittsfield's most daring burglaries
took place. The perpetrators broke into the post office
in the back of the building, drilled holes into the
safe, filled them with powder and lit the fuse. The door
blew off awakening the entire neighborhood but the
burglars made off with $1100 worth of stamps and $25 in
cash. they were never apprehended.
Union Block 1876-95
20. Across the street
is the Tuttle Block, erected in 1874 during the
aftermath of another disastrous fire which had destroyed
several buildings on that side of the street the
previous year. This large Renaissance Revival commercial
building with round-headed windows was the third
location of the famous H. A. Tuttle Clothing Store.
Hiram Tuttle, later governor of N. H., initially hired
many employees to make tailor-made suits. Later he
increased his business tremendously by selling
"off-the-rack" clothing in 13 states.
Hiram A. Tuttle
21. The vacant lot
across the street contained Pittsfield's first frame
building known for nearly a century as the
Washington House. Erected by town founder John Cram
in 1769, it quickly became the social, economic and
political center of town during his lifetime. Here he
ran an inn which through the years increased in size. In
1866 a two story piazza was added and in 1873 a third
floor. It was named after America's first president,
although he never stayed there. The building was
destroyed by fire in 1984 and razed in 1993.
Washington House 1861
Across the street is the R. P. J. Tenney House
erected immediately after the fire of 1873 which had
destroyed the doctor's dwelling house, double tenement
building, out buildings and their entire contents. At
the time it was Pittsfield's finest. The Italianate
style residence with classically derived entry portico,
contained 19 rooms and was built at a cost of $10,000, a
monumental sum in those days. Only a wealthy individual
such as the well known Dr. Tenney could have afforded
such an extravagance.
The large Greek Revival house next door was erected
during the early Nineteenth Century to provide quarters
for agents of the Cotton Mill and thus became known as
the Agents' House. Among the Nineteenth Century
agents were James Treat, Hervey Kent, Orman Davis, and
George Kent. It was the latter Mr. Kent who, in 1889 had
the gable entry porch and side veranda added by
contractor L. L. Caswell. Unfortunately a part of the
unique, arts and crafts style stick work on the side
veranda was destroyed by the tornado of 1999. E. P.
Sanderson, important industrialist and Pittsfield
benefactor, was born here.
Agents House With Arts and Crafts Veranda
This trail data/booklet was prepared by Larry Berkson,
President of the Pittsfield Historical Society. Without
his diligence this material would not be available.
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