THIS OLD HOUSE

HOUSES, PART I
Guilford, Conn.
72 Church St.
Eli Parmelee
Italianate, c1860 and Queen Anne, c1880

One of three similar houses on Church Street, it combines Italianate and Queen Anne features, a popular treatment in the late 19th century. They have heavy cornices with strong returns, Italianate windows, and decorative Queen Anne wraparound porches added later. Eli Parmelee [1808-1882; Jonathan, William, Joseph, Isaac, John, John] served as a Republican deputy to the General Court from Guilford and as deacon of the 1st Congregational Church from 1852 until his death.


54 Water St.
Joseph Parmelee
Colonial, 1748

A five-bay, center-chimney Colonial house, a type prevalent on the street. But the large Greek Revival doorway, added later, makes this one a standout. Its double set of pilasters, with decorated sidelight in between, supports a band of small cutout circles. The lean-to has been removed and additions at the side and rear. Joseph Parmelee [1721-1804; Joseph, Isaac, John, John] had three wives and five children.


68 Water St.
David Parmelee
Colonial, 1780

This house sits on a high foundation very close to the street. Its most distinctive feature is its roof which ends in wide eaves overhanging the front of the house, a style derived from the Dutch Colonial houses found on Long Island. The wide eaves shelter the double front steps leading to a plain board door frame. David Parmelee [1759-1814; Joseph, Joseph, Isaac, John, John] lived just down the street from his father at No. 54.


74 Water St.
David Parmelee
Federal, 1807; Architect: Abraham Coan

The distinguishing feature of this house is the four-bay facade with off-center door, an innovative type of plan in the Federal period. Combined with the delicate detail of the doorway, it is typical of Coan's work. the rear ell is thought to have once been a part of one of Samuel Desborough's outbuildings and may date to 1640. David Parmelee [1784-1870; David, Joseph, Joseph, Isaac, John, John], who lived next door to his father, was a blacksmith and a Whig-turned-Democrat who was active in town affairs.


93 Water St.
David Kirkland Parmelee
Federal, 1835

This house seems to have been raised from its original foundations and a simple stone stairway built to reach the now-high entrance. Notice the semi-elliptical window in the gable, a Federal fashion still hanging on well into the Greek Revival period. The triangular porch hood with pendants and delicate scrollwork is a late 19th-century addition. David Parmelee [1812-1903; David, David, Joseph, Joseph, Isaac, John, John] was the owner and captain of various small fishing vessels until his late 60s, sailing mostly between Guilford, Long Island and New York City. One of his sons, Frank, was a lighthouse keeper on Faulkner's Island just off the Guilford coast.


134 Water St.
James T. Leete Jr.
Colonial, 1807

Leete inherited this late Colonial house and sold it to the Guilford Manufacturing Co. in 1849. (The two houses next door were made from half of the company's building.) The house was purchased by George Parmelee (not placed) in 1860. He later sold it to the town for an almshouse.With its boxed cornice, 12/12 sash, slightly projecting window frames, plain framed doorway with five-light transom and crown molding, this house built in the Federal period, looks more like late Colonial work.


142 Whitfield St.
Leverett Parmelee
Greek Revival, 1854

This house is presumed to have been owned by Leverett Parmelee and built by William Weld. Its unusually broad front displays the characteristics of the Greek Revival style -- cornice with returns, rectangular window in the gable, doorway with pilasters and entablature trimmed with a row of dentils -- is typical of Weld's work. Leverett Parmelee [1793-1860; William, William, Joseph, Isaac, John, John] also lived at 254 Boston St. and sold that home to Col. John Burgis in 1829.


118 Whitfield St.
Andrew Parmelee
1726

This house owned by Andrew Parmelee [1704-1794; Isaac, John, John] sits next door to the Eagle Hose Co., one of Guilford's fire stations. Andrew is the son of Isaac, who owned the Hyland House, below. When I saw the house in 1998, it looked as if it were being used as a store.


84 Boston St.
George Hyland, "The Hyland House"
Colonial, 1660

This 17th-century frame house with an added-on lean-to is one of the oldest in Guilford. Built by George Hyland, it was owned by three generations of the Parmelee family -- Isaac [1665-1748/49; John, John], Ebenezer and Ebenezer Jr. In 1916, it was rescued by the Dorothy Whitfield Historic Society and opened as a museum. Another of Isaac's sons, Andrew, owned a home on Whitfield Street.


320 Boston St.
John W. Norton
Greek Revival, 1870; Builder: Philos "Carlton" Parmelee

This house, exhibiting characteristics of both Colonial and Greek Revival styles at a very late date for both, was built by Philos "Carlton" [1819-1897; Joel, Joel, John, John] on the foundation of a 1716 dwelling inherited by Thomas Burgis IV and his brother Samuel which Norton later bought and tore down. Norton sold this new house in 1912 and wrote the following information on the back of a photo of it: "Deacon John Norton bought in 1866, using chamber doors and oak planks in pantry and sinkroom and front door in cellar from old house (1716). Windows and door handmade by builder Carlton Parmelee (builder of present home)."


Along Nut Plains Road, north of the main village of Guilford, are these four Parmelee homes clustered together. I'm afraid I don't have any information on the architectural aspects of any of them.

605 Nut Plains Road,
Joel Parmelee
1780
Joel [1757-1835; John, John, John, John, John]

652 Nut Plains Road,
Uriah Parmelee
1809
Uriah [1786-1849; Joel, John, John, John, John, John]
He was a member of the state militia in the War of 1812.

635 Nut Plains Road,
Joel Cruttenden Parmelee
c1850
Joel [1821-1862; Joel, Joel, John, John, John, John, John]

678 Nut Plains Road,
Reuben Parmelee
1786
Reuben [1741-1810; John, John, John, John, John]