This is a large barn structure comprising two segments in one large rectangular footprint. The eastern portion is the central block and consists of a 1 ½-story gable-roof structure with a gable-entry. Attached to the southwest gable-end of this section is a 2 ½-story gable-roof bank barn addition, oriented perpendicular to the eastern portion. A small 1-story gable-roof addition projects to the southeast from the east corner of the barn. The barn is set well back from Greenhaven Road, behind other buildings, and may be difficult to see from the road. Greenhaven Road passes this property at a northeast to southwest angle.
The primary façade of this barn is the northeast gable-end of the central block. The main entry consists of an oversize pair of centered wooden sliding doors, mounted on an overhead track. The southern leaf contains a rectangular window opening within. A vertical rectangular opening is centered above this main entry. Within the gable-attic is a large, centered segment of vertical wooden siding, which appears to be filling in a prior hay-door opening. Set within this wooden siding is a rectangular window opening. The hay track projects off this gable-end just beneath the roof ridgeline. The northwest eave-side of the central-block appears to contain three rectangular window openings, unevenly spaced down the length of this portion of the building. The southwest gable-end of the central block is completely occupied by the taller perpendicular addition. The southeast eave-side contains a hinged wood-plank pass-through door at the south corner, followed by a two-pane window and a larger wood-plank sliding door, mounted on an upper track. Another window opening is apparent between sliding door and the east corner addition.
The east corner addition is 1-story in height with a gable-roof. It projects to the southeast, and also to the northeast slightly from the façade. It appears to be a slightly banked structure. The southwest eave-side of this addition appears to contain one offset window opening. A centered window opening is located on the southeast gable-end. A joined pair of window openings are located on the northeast eave-side.
Occupying the entire southwest gable-end of the central block is a large 2 ½-story gable-roof bank barn, with perpendicular orientation. The primary entry to this 2 ½-story barn appears to be through the central block. The northwest gable-end of this structure appears to contain three window openings on the first-story. The second-story and gable-attic appear to be blank. The southwest eave-side exposes the full basement level, which is open, interrupted by two sill posts, dividing the basement into three open stalls. Three double-hung window openings are evenly-spaced along the first-story on this side. The second-story is blank. The southeast gable-end exposes a portion of the cut fieldstone foundation as the grade slopes down to the west. The first-story contains four evenly-spaced square window openings. A large pass-through door-size opening is located on the second-story, offset from the eastern window on the floor below. A rectangular opening is centered beneath the roof ridgeline within this gable-attic, and a projecting hay track is mounted just beneath the ridgeline.
The exterior of this barn structure appears to be primarily clad with decaying asbestos shingles. The southeast eave-side of the central block, and the three sides of the east corner addition, are covered with vertical wooden board-and-batten siding. The foundation is of cut fieldstone, mortared. The roof is covered with asphalt shingles, which are green. Individual shingles have been replaced with white shingles, creating the roof lettering “Davis Farm” on the southwest and southeast roof faces. Some shingles have been replaced making this lettering somewhat difficult to read. Two small cupolas are located atop this barn. Both have a very low profile to the roofline upon which they sit. One is square in shape and centered atop the ridgeline of the 2 ½-story perpendicular portion. The other is rectangular in shape and is off-center to the east on the ridgeline of the central block. Each is topped by a gable-roof and has blank sides.
The New England barn or gable front barn was the successor to the English barn and relies on a gable entry rather than an entry under the eaves. The gable front offers many practical advantages. Roofs drain off the side, rather than flooding the dooryard. With the main drive floor running parallel to the ridge, the size of the barn could be increased to accommodate larger herds by adding additional bays to the rear gable end. Although it was seen by many as an improvement over the earlier side-entry English Barn, the New England barn did not replace its predecessor but rather coexisted with it, as both types continued to be built.
The 19th century would see the introduction of a basement under the barn to allow for the easy collection and storage of a winter’s worth of manure from the animals sheltered within the building. The bank barn is characterized by the location of its main floor above grade, either through building on a hillside or by raising the building on a foundation. This innovation, aided by the introduction of windows for light and ventilation, would eventually be joined by the introduction of space to shelter more animals under the main floor of the barn.
Stanton-Davis Homestead / Robert Stanton House is listed on the National Register Nomination No. 79002648.
This barn is set well back from Greenhaven Road, behind other buildings, and may be difficult to see from the road. Greenhaven Road passes this property at a northeast to southwest angle. Several buildings which resemble dwellings are located on this property, scattered some distance to the south and southeast of the barn, near Greenhaven Road. A large, modern pole barn is located closer to the barn, to the immediate east. A series of gravel driveways connect the various buildings on this property. The remains of scattered stone walls are apparent around the property. The immediate surroundings of this barn consist of mounded grassland with occasional scattered trees. Beyond this immediate area of mounds, flatter agricultural fields are located to the northwest, north, and east of the barn. An historic cemetery is located to the immediate east of this property along Greenhaven Road. The area across Greenhaven Road to the southeast and east is residential in nature. Scattered woodlands and areas of open land dot the landscape from the southwest around to the north.
40.14 acres, ID 10-6-1B.
N. Nietering & T. Levine, reviewed by CT Trust
Photographs by Lynn Friedman.
Robert Stanton House National Register Nomination No.79002648, National Park Service, 1979.
Sexton, James, PhD; Survey Narrative of the Connecticut Barn, Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, Hamden, CT, 2005, http://www.connecticutbarns.org/history.
Visser, Thomas D., Field Guide to New England Barns and Farm Buildings,
University Press of New England, 1997, 213 pages.
Map of Stonington, CT, retrieved on June 26, 2011 from website www.bing.com.
Stonington Assessor’s Records - Southeastern Connecticut Council of Governments online - http://host.appgeo.com/sccog/Map.aspx