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My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Cogswell's Grant, Essex, Massachusetts, A Historic house that Holds a 60 yr. old Collection

Cogswell's Grant
60 Spring Street
Essex, Essex Co., Massachusetts 01929

What a strange name and what does it mean? From what I learned, is the name of the property that includes a house built in 1728 and a farm comprising of 165 acres, and for 60 years it became the summer home of American folk art collectors, Bertram K. and Nina Fletcher Little. They purchased the property in 1937, for $13,000. "Once Mrs. Little was able to trace the history of the farm, she discovered the 1636 land grant to John Cogswell in the manuscript archives for the Town of Ipswich, and she named the property “Cogswell’s Grant.” Originally, there were 300 acres, but previous owners sold some of their property. The land was leased to tenants then, and is still being used by local farmers. The couple made changes, as did previous families, to suit themselves. There are no period rooms, it is more like a museum.

Visitors Center, in the cow stable of the barn. Behind the chairs, you can walk along and see on the wall a genealogy of the Cogswell family and history of the property. (Photos at the end.)
The property passed through several Cogswell generations. The third generation daughter, Elizabeth Cogswell married Thomas Wade in 1670 in Ipswich. Her husband is my 7th great grand-uncle.
To begin our August tour, we walked to the front of the house; below was our view of the town of Essex.
Photo taken in October 2018.
These two photos were taken in the first room we entered, the Green Sitting Room. So much to see, old and new. Note the semi-old tv!
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Room to the left is Mrs. Little's study, shown below.
Love the typewriter and old black phone.

Collection of redware pottery.
The dining room, however, I forgot to take pictures, other than the redware and fireplace. What was I thinking? But, I got the kitchen.

Very small kitchen and table is next to the dining room, and is where lunch was eaten every day.


Front parlor.

Up to the second floor.

My favorite bedroom.



Rugs and paintings everywhere in the next three photos.




Treasurers everywhere.
A view looking up to the attic, unfortunately we didn't go up.
Above is a guest bedroom.
Of course, every item in all the rooms had a story because Mrs. Little researched each item and documented them.
Bedroom of Mr. and Mrs. Little. I'm surprised the beds and coverlets didn't match.

Child's bed seen above and below.

I believe the rug and throw had much brighter color.

 
First floor guest bedroom, right near the front door. The room was filled with things to look at, beginning with the ceiling (see pg. 6 of website.) The bed was covered with a bed rug.

I've never been into folk art, but after this tour, I was hooked. Perhaps because so many items came from the area or other parts of New England. It seemed they all came with history, as a matter of fact, Mrs. Little shared her expertise by writing 10 books on decorative arts and related topics (some with her husband). The house was jammed with things to look at. During the other months, the couple used their English china and silverware in their home in Brookline, Massachusetts.
View from first floor window.

Property outside is lovely, you are free to roam and go into the barn.




Looking up at the barn and visitors center.




We returned in the middle of October because we thought the maple trees would be in full color, but unfortunately, they weren't.








Photo from their website. The majority of their land is rented out to farmers.






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