This is a 1 ½-story gable-entry barn. The main façade of the barn faces west and the ridge-line of the barn is roughly east-west. The northern most bay appears to contain a two-over-two double-hung sash window. Centered in the facade is the main entry which consists of an interior sliding door with a center stained glass window. South of the main entry is a two-over-two double-hung sash window. The southern-most bay has a paneled pass-through door. The gable attic has a one-over-one double-hung sash window towards the north, a centered interior sliding hay door, and a one-over-one double-hung sash window towards the south. A two-over-two double-hung sash window is located beneath the apex of the roof. The barn is clad with clapboards with corner board trim and window surround trim. The barn and all details have been painted white.
Until the 1830s, the horses used for riding and driving carriages were often kept in the main barn along with the other farm animals. By the 1850s, some New England farmers built separate horse stables and carriage houses. Early carriage houses were built just to shelter a carriage and perhaps a sleigh, but no horses. The pre-cursor to the twentieth-century garage, these outbuildings are distinguished by their large hinged doors, few windows, and proximity to the dooryard.
The combined horse stable and carriage house continued to be a common farm building through the second half of the nineteenth century and the first decade of the twentieth century, until automobiles became common. Elaborate carriage houses were also associated with gentlemen farms and country estates of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Another form of carriage barn, the urban livery stable, served the needs of tradespeople.
This barn is set on a 0.64-acre property that is located on the east side of North Main Street slightly north of Marbern Drive. North Main Street runs approximately north-south and the ridge-line of the barn is roughly perpendicular to the road. The property is located in the northern quadrant of the Suffield Historic District which is comprised of a mix of 18th- and 19th-century homes. The carriage house is associated with a late nineteenth-century Queen Anne style house is set back from the street behind a deep front yard. A parking area is between the house and barn.
Melissa Antonelli, reviewed by the CT Trust
Photographs by Henry Hanmer.
Capitol Region Council of Governments, GIS Viewer, http://www.crcog.org/gissearch/.
Map of Suffield, CT, retrieved Aug 27, 2010 from website www.bing.com.
McAlester, Virginia & Lee, A Field Guide to American Houses, Knopf, New York, 1984.
O’Gorman, James F., Connecticut Valley Vernacular: the Vanishing Landscape and Architecture of the New England Tobacco Fields, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2002.
Sexton, James, PhD, Survey Narrative of the Connecticut Barn, Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, Hamden, CT, 2005, http://www.connecticutbarns.org/history.
Vision Appraisal Online Database. www.visionappraisal.com/SuffieldCT. Map 41/Block H 45/Lot 310.
Visser, Thomas D., Field Guide to New England Barns and Farm Buildings, University Press of New England, 1997.
Ransom, David, Suffield National Register District Nomination No. 79003750, National Park Service, 1979.
Suffield Historic District, Town of Suffield, “Suffield Historic District Handbook,” no date, accessed 8/26/2010 from http://www.suffieldtownhall.com/content/2951/1674/1442/default.aspx.
Local Historic District - Main Street Historic District, 1963.