General Lewis R. Morris/Barry/Mollica House

General Lewis R. Morris/Barry/Mollica House

Site: V07-14
Municipality: Springfield, VT
Location: 456 Old Connecticut River Road
Site Type: House
Vt Survey No: 1418-19
UTMs: (Zone 18) 1. 710420/4796300. 2. 710290/479290. 3. 709790/4795790. 4. 709920/4796370

National Register Nomination Information:


Situated on relatively flat bottomland next to the Connecticut River, the Gen. Lewis R. Morris House possesses a two-story, five-by-four-bay, post-and-beam-framed (with brick nogging), clapboarded, hip-roofed main block of Georgian plan and transitional Georgian-Federal style. Extending from the main block's rear (west) facade, a series of three clapboarded, gable roofed secondary blocks includes a kitchen ell, a former shed wing, and a carriage barn. The one-and-one-half-story ell is marked by a three-bay Italianate south porch built of components recycled from the former front porch. The gable-front carriage barn carries a ventilating cupola with a bellcast cap. Two detached agricultural buildings stand southwest of the house. Both the board-and-battened, gable-roofed former corn barn and the much larger stock barn also carry central cupolas; the illuminating cupola displays Greek Revival ornament and a bellcast cap. The property retains largely intact its integrity of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and association.

The General Lewis R. Morris House property lies in the Connecticut River valley of eastern Springfield township. The house and related outbuildings constitute a cluster next to the west side of the historic valley road (now called Old Connecticut River Road) where it follows closely the west bank of the broad river. The surrounding terrain to the north, south, and, to a limited extent, the west consists of flat valley bottomland. The present main highway, U. S. Route 5, has been relocated along the west side of the bottomland behind the buildings. The two-lane highway follows the base of the abrupt north-south escarpment formed by Skitchewaug Mountain that rises some 600 feet above the bottomland to an elevation of about 900 feet.

An intermittent screen of deciduous and coniferous trees exists along the river bank and the River Road. West of that paved road, the bottomland in the vicinity of the buildings has been cleared and used historically for agricultural purposes. During the 1980s, the current owners of the Morris House property undertook the planting of coniferous trees suitable for the Christmas market on the fields south, west, and north of the buildings, and that use now predominates. West of Route 5, the steep slopes of Skitchewaug Mountain are covered with second growth deciduous and coniferous forest apart from numerous outcrops of bedrock.

The Morris House proper is set back from the River Road on a slight rise of ground above the usual flood stage of the river. The main block is oriented parallel to the road, and a connected series of three lesser blocks extends westward from the rear. The first, a reduced kitchen ell, connects in turn to a recessed former shed wing, and that wing links to a carriage barn attached perpendicularly (parallel to the house's main block). A short distance southwest from the carriage barn stand two detached barns, both oriented perpendicular to the road. An extraordinarily large stock barn with a ground-level stable dominates the entire cluster of buildings while a small former corn barn is placed closely adjacent to its southeast corner.

The grounds of the house are informally landscaped with a variety of deciduous and coniferous trees and shrubs standing on the expansive lawns. A pair of towering white pines dominates the front (east) grounds. A gravel driveway leads perpendicularly from the River Road past the south facade of the house toward the barns. Mature sugar maples line the south side of the driveway and the west side of the road south of the driveway. The south grounds are partly occupied by apple trees of various sizes. The north grounds are shaded by scattered mature sugar maples. Screened from the road by a low coniferous hedge, a rectangular swimming pool has been installed (c. 1970) next to the house's rear ell; a slate-surfaced terrace surrounds the pool.

Marking the historic association of the property, a granite monument commemorating General Lewis Morris has been placed next to the east side of Route 5 opposite the building cluster. The rock faced granite block bears a bronze tablet that briefly describes Morris' accomplishments. The monument was placed originally (1925) next to the road in front of the house, and was moved after the highway was relocated in the 1950s.

At least two other historic outbuildings have existed in the cluster. Closely adjacent to the northeast corner of the stock barn, the poured-concrete foundation remains of a milkhouse that was dismantled in the spring of 1982. The high rectangular foundation measuring twelve by twenty feet includes a depressed opening for a door on the longer west side next to the barn's east wall. A short distance northeast of the barn, only a low stone foundation marks the site of a carriage shed that partly collapsed and was removed later in 1982.

A photograph taken in 1973 shows the carriage shed in deteriorated condition. Built probably during the first half of the nineteenth century, the one-and-one-half-story carriage shed was oriented parallel to the carriage barn. The shed was sheathed with irregular horizontal boards, and its gable roof was then covered with standing-seam sheet metal. Its three-bay main (east) eaves facade was occupied by three carriage bays, a broad central opening flanked by narrower side openings of the same height. All were semielliptical-arched and outlined by narrow wood surrounds with impost blocks and keystones. Only the right bay was then equipped with crudely made, double-leaf, vertical boarded, hinged doors. The south gable facade was punctuated by appears to have been a semielliptical-headed doorway in the gable and two window openings on the first story.

Shown in contemporary photographs of the barn, the milkhouse also was in deteriorated condition prior to its removal. The one story building carried a shed roof that sloped downward away from the barn; an upward extension of its roof connected to the barn's east wall, sheltering the narrow passageway between the two buildings. The milkhouse's exterior sheathing appears to have been asphalt paper. The three-bay west facade included a central entrance and windows in the side bays. The north facade was punctuated by a first-story window and what appears to have been a louvered ventilator under the raking eave. The northeast corner was deeply recessed beneath the overhanging roof slope, indicating the existence of a loading dock for milk cans. The east facade was thereby reduced to a single window bay.

General Lewis R. Morris House; c. 1795, 1878, 1978.
The imposing house erected for General Morris constitutes the head of a series of four connected blocks that concludes in a carriage barn. The original main block possesses a Georgian plan and Georgian-Federal stylistic features; its main entrance was rebuilt in 1978 in a stylistically related manner. Roughly centered on the main block's rear (west) facade, the kitchen ell was built during the last quarter of the nineteenth century for Leonidas Barry, replacing the original counterpart; it was somewhat altered in 1978 for the current owners. Repeating the kitchen ell's orientation but offset one bay northward, the shed wing was renovated c. 1980 for residential usage. The perpendicular carriage barn was also constructed probably during the latter nineteenth century for Leonidas Barry.

The two-story main block of the house extends about 49 feet (north-south) by 38.5 feet (east-west). It rests on a granite slab foundation. The walls are constructed of post-and-beam framing supplemented by brick nogging, and are sheathed on the exterior with clapboards. Slender molded, paneled pilasters ascend the corners and support a denticulated cornice with carved modillions that encircles the eaves. The shallow-pitched hip roof is covered with asphalt shingles. Twin massive interior brick chimneys of rectangular section surmount the north and south slopes: the caps of the chimneys have been rebuilt and stone slabs have been mounted atop them.

The present (1990) appearance of the five-bay main (east) facade reflects the 1978 attempt to restore its original appearance and eliminate the Italianate alterations made exactly a century earlier. The central entrance was rebuilt in its entirety. A new single-leaf door with six raised panels was installed (augmented by an aluminum storm door), replacing the previous double-leaf Italianate doors. Now stored on the premises, each of the latter possesses a vertically elongated, segmental-headed light (only one of the original foliated etched glass survives) over a single bottom panel. A new surround was created, incorporating fluted Ionic pilasters carrying pulvinated frieze blocks below the returns of a modillioned cornice taking the form of a pediment. Above the door and within the pediment, a semicircular fanlight with radiating muntins was installed in a previous semicircular opening that had been infilled. The approach to the entrance is made by massive two-tier, granite slab steps with a wrought-iron footscraper imbedded at each side these are probably the original steps.

The first-story window openings had been lengthened in 1878 to accommodate tall two-over-two sash. These openings were shortened in 1978 to their original length, and the two-over-two sash were replaced by the new twelve-over-twelve sash (plus aluminum storm sash) installed throughout the main block. The molded architrave surrounds and molded sills were preserved. The first-story surrounds are crowned by an Ionic entablature with a pulvinated frieze and denticulated cornice cap. The second-story windows lack the crowning entablature. Louvered wood shutters are hung at all the windows on the main block.

The symmetrically arranged, four-bay north and south facades share identical appearance. The windows are grouped in pairs on each half of each facade, the pairs being separated by a somewhat wider central expanse of clapboards. Their stylistic treatment matches by story that of the windows on the main facade.

Interrupted by the kitchen ell, the rear (west) facade lacks the rigid symmetry of the public facades. The section of the west facade south of the ell is punctuated only by a single first story window without the crowning entablature of those elsewhere on the first story. A second (left) bay containing an exterior entrance opening onto the ell's south porch was eliminated in 1978. The section of this facade north of the ell is blank.

The interior of the main block is arranged on a Georgian plan with a room occupying each quadrant of each floor flanking a central stair hall. Owing to the larger sizes of the south rooms, the center hall is offset somewhat northward from the central east-west axis of the house. The center hall differs in width between its front (east) and rear halves, the latter being wider on the right (north) side to accommodate the stair to the second floor. The first floor contains double parlors in the front (southeast and northeast) quadrants, the dining room in the southwest quadrant, and the library in the northwest quadrant. The second floor is occupied by four bedrooms.

The rooms are generally decorated in a high-style Georgian Federal manner. The existing fabric, however, represents at least three periods or alterations. Most of the woodwork dates from the original (c. 1795) construction of the house. The interior may have been partly remodeled during the 1830s to reflect the emerging Greek Revival fashion. A columned fireplace surround in the southeast parlor probably deriving from that period was replaced during the 1978 rehabilitation. The latter project also involved the restoration of certain woodwork such as molded baseboard that had been removed during the installation for previous owners of a modern central heating system.

The finish materials and decorative treatment of the center hall represent the general character of the main block's interior. A molded baseboard encircles the floor laid with medium-width, softwood boards. The plastered walls are articulated by a molded chair rail, and crowned by a frieze with zigzag motif and a molded cornice along the perimeter of the plastered ceiling. The door openings are enframed by molded architrave surrounds; the round-headed surround of the off-center main entrance and fanlight was installed in 1978. Ascending through an open well, the two-flight, open-string stair incorporates a molded rail, square balusters, and turned newel posts; the railing terminates in a spiral at the first-floor end.

The southwest dining room exhibits the most elaborate decoration. Its east wall is finished in wood paneling; the two tiers of vertical raised panels on the right side continue around the projecting chimney breast of the central fireplace while the left side has a single horizontal panel above the door leading into the southeast parlor. The other walls are paneled (with horizontal raised panels) only below the molded chair rail that serves also as a continuous window sill. The broad interior doors in the east and north walls bear six raised panels, and, like the windows, are enframed by heavy molded architrave surrounds. A heavy denticulated cornice encircles the ceiling.

The fireplace combines historic and recent components. The historic components include the stone hearth, the brick firebox, and its molded surround. The mantel and related features were installed during the 1978 project to replace a thinner mantel, paneled frieze blocks, and paneled pilasters dating probably from c. 1830 (now stored on the premises). Intended to suggest the original treatment of the fireplace, fluted pilasters with bases support stepped-out frieze blocks below the denticulated mantel cornice (itself a reduction of the ceiling cornice). The historic overmantel consists of a large rectangular panel with a molded (but not crossetted) surround flanked by a slender vertical panel on each side.

The formal southeast parlor blends original decorative features and recent reproductions or replacements. The heavy molded baseboard had been removed from the east and south walls during the c. 1970 installation of hot-water heating pipes; a reproduction has been crafted by Peter Mollica to restore its continuity (and the heating pipes have been removed). The baseboard incorporates stepped-out bases of the paneled pilasters whose capitals are formed by stepped-out segments of the molded chair rail (the continuous window sill) that support in turn the crossetted architrave surrounds of the windows. A relatively light cornice encircles the perimeter of the ceiling.

Centered on the west wall, the distinctive fireplace in this room possesses a marble hearth and a stone or stuccoed firebox. The crossetted molded surround of the firebox opening supports an Ionic pulvinated frieze (with an added central block) that was removed from the house's main entrance along with the double-leaf Italianate doors in 1978. Also crafted by Peter Mollica, a stylized denticulated mantel cornice has been installed in place of a thinner mantel with paneled frieze blocks and supporting columns that dated probably from c. 1830 (now in storage on the premises).

The opposite (northeast) parlor presents somewhat different decorative treatment The window openings are distinguished by splayed paneled reveals that are inset on each side with unattached bifold shutters, each of which bears three slender vertical panels on one half. Paneled seat boxes are recessed into the walls below the window sash and within the uncrossetted architrave surrounds that interrupt the chair rail. A heavy molded cornice with stylized denticulation encircles the ceiling.

A vertical-casing board on the left reveal of the west window on the north wall records on its reverse side the names of the builders and carpenters responsible for the original construction and major alterations of the house. Three different signatures are written in pencil on the raw wood: Samuel M. Lewis, the original builder; E. D. S[indecipherable] plus the year 1878, apparently the carpenter of the Italianate remodeling, and E. O. Blankenship, the carpenter of the 1978 restoration.

Centered on the room's west wall, the fireplace incorporates a stone hearth and brick firebox. The opening is enframed by a molded surround flanked by fluted pilasters with bases that support plain frieze blocks and a molded mantel cornice with keyhole denticulation. The chimney breast bears a crossetted paneled overmantel, and projects only slightly forward from the closets (with six-panel doors) that flank each side.

The smallest first-floor room, the northwest library echoes the appearance of the dining room. Its east wall is sheathed with three tiers of raised-panel woodwork on the right side of the projecting central fireplace; a six-panel closet door occupies the left side below a single horizontal panel. The fireplace shows the plainest treatment among those on the first floor, having a brick hearth and firebox, a simple molded surround, and a molded mantel cornice lacking support from below; the chimney breast bears two tiers of raised-panel woodwork. A heavy molded cornice encircles the ceiling.

The second-floor rooms display less elaborate ornament, reflecting their lack of exposure to public view. The center hall and the southeast (master) and northeast front bedrooms share molded baseboards, chair rails, door and window surrounds, and denticulated ceiling cornices while the rear rooms present plainer appearance. Flanked by closets with six-panel doors, the southeast room's fireplace has fluted pilasters supporting a denticulated mantel entablature. A Greek Revival surround distinguishes the fireplace in the southwest room while the treatment in the northeast room corresponds to that in the first floor library.

The basement of the main block is notable especially for its extraordinary depth. The exterior walls are constructed of mortared rubble while the interior partitions are built of brick with wood lintels over the door openings between the rooms. The brick base of each chimney stack incorporates a large barrel vaulted alcove on the west side, apparently designed for the storage of wine and spirits. The wood framing exposed at the ceiling level, including the first-floor joists, consists mostly of up-and-down-sawn timbers.

The clapboarded kitchen ell differs from the other blocks by resting on a brick foundation. Extending 30 feet (east-west) 23 feet (north-south), it rises one and one-half stories to a gable roof shingled with slate of variegated colors. A plain fascia and a molded cornice (without gable returns) follow both the horizontal and raking eaves. An interior brick stove chimney emerges from the north roof slope at the ridge.

The ell's five-bay main (south) eaves facade is arranged asymmetrically. Entrances with doors having four raised panels occupy the left corner (installed in l978) and central bays, flanking a window with a modern eight-over-twelve sash. The two right bays are fitted with shorter eight-over-eight sash, installed c. 1970. All of these openings have plain surrounds. An original gabled wall dormer with clapboarded cheeks, a molded eaves cornice, and a slate-shingled roof interrupts the right side of the south roof slope. It is lighted by a six-over-six sash with a molded surround.

Sheltering the first story, a three-bay Italianate porch spans this facade. The porch incorporates components recycled from front porch that was removed from the main block in 1978, principally the heavy molded and paneled pillars supported by the pedestals with raised diamond panels, and the shallow segmental arched, molded spandrels of the open bays crowned by a continuous band of arcaded and carved dentils. The porch's plank deck and asphalt-shingled hip roof were rebuilt c. 1970; the boxed cornice was added in 1978.

The ell's partly exposed west gable facade lacks any opening on the first story next to the recessed shed wing. The gable, however, is punctuated by two bays of six-over-six sash with plain surrounds.

The ell's north eaves facade was altered during the 1970s by the installation of a sliding glass door on the left side and triplet eight-over-twelve sash (each surmounted by a four-light transom on the right side. Matching its counterpart on the opposite (south) slope, a gabled wall dormer interrupts the left side of the north roof slope.

The third block of the connected series, the clapboarded former shed wing extends 47 feet (east-west) by 21 feet (north-south). It rises only a single story from a granite-slab and concrete foundation. A boxed cornice follows the eaves of the asphalt shingled, shallow-pitched gable roof. Twin cylindrical metal stove chimneys have been added to the north slope.

During the 1978 project, the wing's three-bay south eaves facade was reworked from its previously altered appearance. A deeply recessed (with vertical-boarded reveals) central entrance was created to accommodate the double-leaf, broad, six-panel, hinged doors that were removed from the center hall of the house; a twenty-four-light transom was installed above the doors. The opening leading to the entrance is outlined by a narrow semielliptical-arched surround. The flanking side bays are outlined in the same manner but contain coupled six-over-nine sash set into a vertical-boarded surface flush with the facade.

Also altered in 1978, the opposite north facade echoes in a simplified manner the south facade's arrangement. 'The unrecessed central entrance contains double-leaf, fifteen-light, hinged doors while the side bays have coupled six-over-nine sash, all with plain surrounds. A six-panel door enters the left corner.

Carriage Barn; c. 1890.
The final block of the connected series, the vernacular carriage barn, repeats the orientation of the house's main block. Matching the line of the shed wing's north facade, the carriage barn projects southward from the shed wing's corresponding facade. The barn extends 30.5 feet in east-west width by 40.5 feet in north-south length. Its outstanding decorative feature, a ventilating cupola similar to a counterpart on the stock barn, crowns the gable roof.

The one-and-one-half-story barn rests on a granite-slab foundation except for the west eaves facade where the basement story is mostly exposed and two broad central trabeated openings allow the storage of equipment on the ground level. The post-and-beam frame is constructed mostly of circular-sawn timbers connected by pegged mortise-and-tenon joints, and sheathed on the exterior with clapboards. Plain corner boards ascend to the fascia below the boxed cornice at the eaves. The gable roof is shingled with slate of variegated colors.

The cupola straddles the center of the ridge. Its clapboarded base stage is delimited by a shallow molded cornice. The main stage is ventilated on each face by a large rectangular wood louver with a plain surround, flanked by small areas of flush horizontal boards and plain corner boards that suggest pilasters. A deeply projecting molded cornice follows the eaves. The cupola is capped by a distinctive four-sided bellcast roof shingled with slate.

The two-bay main (south) gable facade of the carriage barn is entered at the right corner by a paneled overhead door that has been installed in the original opening with a plain surround; it replaced an interior sliding door. A vertical-boarded, hinged loft door surmounts the vehicle entrance. The left bay of the first story is occupied by a reduced six-over-six sash while a wider sash of the same division lights the gable.

The rear (north) gable facade now lacks fenestration. A series of about six small horse-stall windows formerly lighted the first story, but were removed during the 1978 project. A vertical boarded, hinged loft door remains in place on the left side of this facade. The west eaves facade is blank above the basement except for a single six over six sash near its right corner.

Corn Barn; c. 1850?
Now used for storage, the former corn barn stands about three feet apart from the southeast corner of the stock barn. The two buildings are oriented parallel, the corn barn's north eaves facade being only six feet north of the stock barn's south eaves facade. The smaller barn faces eastward, and only its east gable facade is punctuated by door or window openings. It measures 24.5 feet (north-south) by 30.5 feet (east-west).

The corn barn rests about two feet above the ground on square timber piers arranged regularly beneath the north and south facades. The crawl space under the building remains unskirted around the perimeter. The post-and-beam structure is framed mostly with hand-hewn timbers that are pegged together at mortise-and-tenon joints. The roof is supported by peeled half log rafters.

The corn barn was sheathed originally with vertical boards spaced slightly apart to provide the necessary ventilation for drying corn. In order to make the barn weathertight, that sheathing was replaced in 1990 by sheets of plywood attached to the frame as an underlayer and boards-and-battens as the exterior layer; the latter have been stained red. The gable roof retains its historic sheathing of variegated (mostly blue-gray) slate shingles; the slate was probably applied during the latter nineteenth century to replace original wood shingles. A rounded metal cap protects the ridge.

Intended originally to provide additional ventilation, a small cupola straddles the center of the ridge. Its short, horizontal boarded base matches the level of the ridge. The vertical boarded main stage has a vertical rectangular opening on each face, now fitted with a single light of glass. The small gable roof is also shingled with slate.

Only the main (east) gable facade is punctuated by door or window openings. The entrance occurs on the right side, protected by a vertical-boarded exterior sliding door. The double-leaf, ten light, hinged inner doors were apparently recycled from a house. The singular window consists of a new six-over-six sash mounted at the gable peak within an historic plain surround. The other three (south, west, and north) facades lack fenestration.

The interior of the corn barn has been divided into two stories. The upper floor has been newly laid with relatively narrow tongue-and-groove planks similar to the main floor. The wall surfaces consist of the plywood applied to the exterior of the frame behind the boards-and-battens. A newly built closed-string stair ascends to the upper floor in the northeast corner. Although great care has been taken to preserve the basic exterior appearance of the corn barn, it is consldered non-contributing because one of its major character-defining features--the spaced vertical board siding or slats--has been removed.

Stock Barn; c. 1880.
The massive gable-front, gravity-flow stock barn of vernacular design possesses a ground-level stable below the main drive floor, the latter being approached by an earth-filled high drive at each (east and west) end. The barn extends 40.5 feet in north-south width and 103 feet in east-west length. A proportionally large central cupola atop the ridge displays Greek features.

The barn rests on a poured concrete foundation integral to the ground floor. The post-and-beam structure is framed predominantly with circular-sawn timbers that are pegged together in mortise-and-tenon joints. The central third of the north half was rebuilt in 1982 after a portion of the roof collapsed from deterioration. In that section, the new timbers are bolted together at the major joints with steel angle plates. The exterior wall sheathing consists of boards-and-battens except for flush vertical boards on the basement story of the north facade; the previously bare sheathing has been stained red In 1990. Supported by sawn dimension rafters, the roof generally consists of horizontal boards covered by a layer of rolled asphalt (the exterior sheathing prior to 1982). The entire roof was sheathed with corrugated sheet metal after the structural repairs in 1982.

The main (east and west) gable facades present similar appearances. Each possesses a central wagon entrance at the main floor level, approached by a high drive that ascends from the general level of the ground surrounding the barn. The high drives are earth-filled and retained along the sides by unmortared rubble rock walls that flare outward away from the barn. Being closer to the other buildings, the east high drive now receives primary usage and has been capped with rough concrete next to the entrance.

Both the east and west entrances are fitted with recent double-leaf, interior sliding doors made of flush vertical boards. The east entry retains an elongated fifteen-light transom while the corresponding space over the west entry is blind. Both entries have plain surrounds below weathered molded drip caps. Both the east and west gables are punctuated by a window with a plain surround below a molded drip cap; the east opening now has a new six-over-six sash while the west opening retains an historic two-over-two sash. The gable facades differ in the treatment of their basement stories, the east being blank while the west has an open vehicle entrance on the left side of the high drive and coupled twelve-light fixed sash with a plain surround on the right side.

The north and south eaves facades also appear similar above the basement story. Each is lighted at the main floor level by four symmetrically arranged bays of horizontal ten-light fixed sash with plain surrounds. These windows were installed in 1990 in the previously blank walls. The south facade is penetrated at ground level by four vehicle entrances, a pair being near the center and one each near the east and west ends. Created in 1990 to replace several bays of multi-light fixed sash, the entrances are protected by vertical-boarded exterior sliding doors with canted upper corners that match those of the openings. Prior to 1982, the north facade was also lighted at the basement level by several bays of multi-light fixed sash; those windows were removed during the repair work following the partial collapse of the barn's north roof slope.

The illuminating cupola straddles the center of the ridge. A short base sheathed with vertical flush boards rises from both roof slopes to the level of the ridge, encircled there by narrow eaves. The slightly reduced main stage contrasts by being sheathed with wide horizontal flush boards. Each face is lighted by a six-over six sash with a plain surround below a cornice cap. Broad paneled pilasters with molded capitals ascend the corners. Both the pilasters and the window cornices support a heavy eaves entablature with a deeply overhanging molded cornice. The distinctive roof possesses four sides, each in bellcast form and converging at the apex, covered with wood shingles.

The interior of the barn is arranged along a central drive floor that extends the entire length of the main floor level between the high-drive wagon entrances. The drive floor is laid with heavy wood planks oriented perpendicular to its length. Flanking each side of the drive floor are eight open bays with plank floors. A horizontal-boarded, floor-level parapet separates most of the side bays from the drive floor, and incorporates chutes for the delivery of hay to the ground-level stables.

The ground level contains the former stables for cows and other animals. The interior lacks partitions except in the northeast quadrant where two rooms are enclosed with horizontal-boarded walls. The sections of the exterior walls abutted by the high drives are constructed mostly of roughly cut granite slabs and blocks laid without mortar. The present floor of poured concrete with longitudinal drain gutters was added probably during the middle twentieth century to serve an enlarged herd of dairy cows; the stanchions have been removed.

The main loft level corresponds approximately to the eaves of the roof. A plank floor remains in place directly above the drive floor, excepting the third bay from the east end; the side bays are open from below. A partial upper loft occurs at the level of the purlins, extending from an east-central bay near the cupola to the west end of the barn. The upper loft entirely lacks a floor. Both lofts are reached by vertical wood ladders that are attached to the framing members.

This barn is now being used primarily for the storage and servicing of machinery, equipment, and supplies relating to the cultivation of Christmas trees. There are not any animals being kept in the stables, and hay is not being stored in the lofts.


The General Lewis R. Morris House holds significance for embodying the distinctive characteristics of transitional Georgian-Federal style architecture and Georgian interior plan, for being the home of General Morris, an important early Springfield settler, and for its architectural and agricultural merits as a farmstead. The house, which was completed about 1795 after several years of work, represents the highly skilled craftsmanship of Springfield builder Samuel M. Lewis. This property, which includes the c.1795 house, a c.1880 stock barn, c.1890 carriage barn, and over 72 acres of farmland, is being nominated under The Multiple Property Submission, "Agricultural Resources of Vermont," and meets the registration requirements for the farmstead property type.

Within the context of Vermont's historic architecture, the Morris House constitutes an outstanding representative of late Georgian influence in a state with only a limited number of examples. The Georgian style was being superseded by the Federal in the newly independent United States during the last quarter of the nineteenth century when Vermont was being settled. Accordingly, the Georgian appears only to a limited extent in southeastern and southwestern sections of the state where settlement occurred first. The style generally was used in substantial houses built for wealthy immigrants from southern New England or New York who in effect were recreating the fashionable architectural character of their previous residences. Like the majority of its counterparts in Vermont, the Morris House exhibits higher style interior decoration than exterior stylistic treatment.

Scion of a wealthy aristocratic New York family, Lewis Richard Morris was born at Scarsdale, New York on November 2, 1760. His father, Richard Morris, belonged to the landed gentry of Westchester County: his mother was Sarah Ludlow. His namesake uncle, General Lewis Morris, was the last lord of the manor of Morrisania, a member of the Continental Congress who signed the Declaration of Independence, and an active participant in military affairs during the Revolutionary War.

Lewis Richard Morris blended both the names and the interests of the elder Morrises. His education was limited to common school, being interrupted by his entrance into military service during the Revolutionary War. He became an aide to Generals Schuyler and Clinton in New York. After the war, between 1781 and 1783, he served as first secretary under Robert R. Livingston in the Department of Foreign Affairs.

The earliest towns organized in the territory of Vermont (including Springfield in 1761) were chartered by the adjoining Province of New Hampshire on the east side of the Connecticut River. After a Royal decree in 1764 fixed the boundary of New Hampshire at the west bank of the Connecticut River, the Province of New York attempted to exert jurisdiction over Vermont by granting new (or confirmation) charters for towns and establishing a court system here. A county by the name of Cumberland was created in southeastern Vermont (the present Windsor and Windham counties) with its court at Westminster in the Connecticut River valley south of Springfield.

Richard Morris purchased a large amount of land in Springfield during the 1760s, and became a proprietor of the town under its New York confirmation charter granted in 1772. Previously a judge of Admiralty, he was appointed in 1779 as Chief Justice of the New York Supreme Court to succeed John Jay. Morris came to Westminster to conduct sessions of court there.

It is not known specifically when the Judge's son, Lewis Morris came to settle in Springfield. The earliest record of him being here dates from December, 1785, when he was chosen at a town meeting to serve on a committee to plan a meetinghouse. Some sources state that he brought several slaves to Vermont, where the practice was not sanctioned, and that he was compelled not to call them such.

A more fundamental question remains about the impetus for Lewis Morris' removal to the Vermont frontier. His father's extensive land holdings (2650 acres in Springfield and the adjoining township of Rockingham) were undoubtedly the most potent inducement. In 1788, the elder Morris gave Lewis power of attorney over the land, and finally, on December 6, 1791, transferred title to him. His father's decision to transfer the land was partly influenced by regional political events. The residents of Vermont eventually repulsed both the territorial claims and physical occupation by New York and its authorities, and established a briefly independent state. Indeed, after passage of the so-called Vermont Act in 1784, some of the Morris lands were confiscated in reprisal. Richard Morris thereafter sent to Lewis a strong chest captured from Hessian mercenaries during the Revolutionary War, admonishing him "to secure your valuables from that dishonest and reckless population of the Green Mountain state, who have held against the just and true claims of New York."

From that point, Lewis became in effect the lord of a vast country estate including privileges for substantial water power on the Black River (the so-called Morris' or Gould's Mills downstream of Springfield village). Richard Morris had leased much of the land to settlers for farmsteads, and Lewis continued that practice. Accepting rents either in agricultural products or money, they created a form of manorial system in a state noted especially for the independence of its inhabitants.

In 1786, soon after his arrival in Springfield, Morris married for the first time. His wife was Mary Dwight, sister of the celebrated president of Yale College, Timothy Dwight. The marriage, however, proved unsuccessful. Indeed, the Dictionary of American Biography states that Morris "left her soon after their marriage" although a daughter, Louisa M., was born of that union .

Thereafter Morris plunged into local and state political affairs. He was elected a selectman of Springfield in 1788, and was town treasurer from 1790 to 1794. Then he expanded his activities to the county and state levels, holding an extraordinary variety of positions and offices in steady succession throughout the 1790s and early 1800s. During 1789-96, he served as clerk of the Windsor County court, and became judge in the last year of that period, serving in that position until 1801. In January, 1791, he was appointed one of the commissioners who arranged with Congress the admission of Vermont as the fourteenth state. Later the same year, he represented Springfield at the Bennington (Vt.) convention that ratified the Federal constitution. Also in 1791, he was appointed the first United States marshal for Vermont, a position that he held for about a decade. In 1793, he acted as secretary of the Vermont constitutional convention at Windsor. Morris served repeatedly in the Vermont Legislature, beginning as clerk during 1790-91 and then as representative of Springfield in 1795-96 (when he also was speaker of the House), 1803, 1805-06, and finally 1808.

The title of General commonly accompanying Lewis Morris' name derived from a resumption of his military career during the 1790s. He was appointed a brigadier-general of the Vermont militia in 1793. Two years later, he was promoted to the rank of major-general, a position that he retained until 1817.

Meanwhile, Morris undertook the creation of his own manor house. He chose a slight rise in the ground a short distance back from the road and the Connecticut River The actual construction is supposed to have taken seven years, the building being completed in 1795. A carpenter by the name of Samuel M. Lewis (1765-1827) is credited as being the builder; his signature together with the year 1793 appear on the reverse of a window casing board in the northeast parlor. Samuel Lewis, however, did not move to Springfield (probably from Hartford, Connecticut) until about 1792, and therefore may have done mostly the finish work.

Regardless of their identity, the builder(s) achieved a regional landmark of architectural quality. The two-story main block of the house presents a rather understated but formal expression of transitional Georgian-Federal style applied to a hip-roof cube form with a typical Georgian interior plan. The three publicly visible facades display rigidly symmetrical arrangement emanating from the central entrance on the five-bay main (east) facade.

The materials for the building were obtained largely from the Morris property. The timber was undoubtedly cut near the site, and may have been sawn in a Black River mill owned by Morris. (The first-floor joists visible in the basement show the marks of up-and-down sawing typical of the contemporary water-powered mills.) The bricks for the nogging and the chimneys are supposed to have been made on the premises.

The original exterior decorative treatment was limited to door and window surrounds and the main eaves entablature. The interior contrasts by its richer embellishment. The dining room exhibits the most elaborate array, befitting Morris' special concern with its function. According to Baker's Folklore of Springfield, he "prided himself on his dining room appointments and service, all meals being served with great dignity. He entertained most lavishly and distinguished guests [supposedly including Lafayette] from all parts of the country came to sit around his board. He dressed with greatest care for each meal and required all members of his family to do the same." Indeed, even the conversations during the meals were carefully arranged; the topics were chosen and given preparation in advance. The original raised paneling on the walls, the denticulated ceiling cornice, and the architrave surrounds of the doors and windows continue to bespeak such formality. (The fireplace mantel is a recent reproduction).

During the 1790s, Morris married for the second time. His new wife was Theodosia (spelled Theoda on her gravestone) Olcott (1765-1800), the daughter of Rev. Buckley and Martha Olcott of Charlestown, the New Hampshire town adjoining Springfield on the east side of the Connecticut River. A son, Lewis Olcott, was born to the couple in 1796. Only four years later, this marriage was ended by the death of Theoda on February 16, 1800. She was reburied in the Morris family lot in Forest Hill Cemetery, Charlestown, after an initial burial on Skitchewaug Mountain.

Morris'-familial interest in Charlestown undoubtedly influenced him to become an incorporator of the Cheshire Bridge Co. in 1804. The purpose was to construct the first bridge across the Connecticut River between Springfield and Charlestown, the latter town being in Cheshire County. Morris subscribed $108 of the original $1,350. The bridge was completed about 1806.

Meanwhile, Lewis Morris had elevated his political career to the national level. A staunch Federalist, he was initially elected in 1796 a Vermont representative in Congress and continued to serve until 1803. E. Wilder Spaulding, the author of his sketch in the Dictionary of American Biography, states. however, that "his six years' service was remarkable only for the part he played in making Jefferson president" during the contested election of 1800. And that was accomplished by his intentional absence from the House after a lengthy series of tied votes, enabling Matthew Lyon, the Republican member from Vermont, to cast the state's ballot for Thomas Jefferson rather than Aaron Burr.

Within about two years after 1800, Morris married his third wife, Ellen Hunt. Born October 19, 1781, she was the daughter of Lieutenant-Governor Jonathan and Levinah Hunt of Vernon, Vermont. Five children emerged from this marriage The first, Richard H., was born on May 16, 1803; he followed his father into a military career with the U. S. Navy but died November 3, 1837 at the age of 34 years. The next child, and only daughter, was Sarah Ludlow, born on March 23, 1806 and named for Lewis Morris' mother; she married Rev. Edward Ballard of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, by whom she had at least three daughters, and died March 28, 1847 at the age of 41. Three more sons followed: Gouverneur, born in 1809, married the widow of his deceased step brother, Richard H., and became a lawyer and judge in Michigan; James Hunt, born in 1812, also went to Michigan and entered business; and Robert, born in 1814, the last and shortest-lived who died on May 2, 1834. Richard, Sarah, and Robert were buried next to their parents in the Charlestown cemetery.

Certain of Lewis Morris' personal property, including his livestock, was recorded in 1810 for the purpose of taxation. He then kept eight oxen, fourteen cows, fourteen other cattle, four horses, and two colts on the home farm. A skilled horseman who usually rode rather than being driven, Morris also owned one of the five pleasure carriages then extant in Springfield.

During the last decade of his life, Lewis Morris transferred or leased much of his land. Some 70 leases were made between 1814 and 1824. In the latter year, about three-quarters of the total were assigned to William Jarvis of Weathersfield, the town adjoining Springfield on the north. Earlier in the century Jarvis had imported Spanish Merino sheep to Vermont, and thereby helped precipitate the great sheep boom that transformed the state's agricultural economy during the first half of the nineteenth century. Jarvis probably leased the land from Morris in order to obtain more pasturage for his sheep.

Lewis Morris died on December 29, 1825 at his homestead. His body was interred in Forest Hill Cemetery, Charlestown, next to his second wife, Theoda. The final disposition of Morris' land holdings must have been a complex task for the administrators of his estate, his widow Ellen and son Lewis O. Morris (who himself died only three years later on October 14, 1828 at age 31, and was buried in the Charlestown cemetery). Ellen received as widow's dower the home farm and several other properties. The farm then encompassed 234 acres of meadow lands and 240 acres of adjoining land on Skitchewaug Mountain. Including the buildings, the home farm was appraised at $16,095. An inventory of personal property in Lewis Morris' estate, including the household furnishings, amounted to the value of $2,123.

Ellen Morris subsequently lived in the main block of the house while the kitchen ell was adapted to quarters for a hired farmer. The possibility exists that she may have redecorated the interior in order to give it a more contemporarily fashionable appearance. At least three fireplace mantels that remained in place until about 1980 are transitional Federal-Greek Revival in style, indicating that they were installed during the 1820s or 1830s. (Two of those mantels, in the southeast parlor and the southwest dining room, have since been removed and are now stored on the premises; the third, a Greek Revival example, remains in the southwest bedroom.)

Ellen Morris continued to reside on the home farm until her death on August 24, 1865 at the age of 84 years; she was buried next to Lewis in the Charlestown cemetery. She had outlived Lewis (by forty years) as well as five of his seven children, including three of the five whom she bore. Only two sons outlived Ellen: both Jonathan (then known as James) H. and Gouverneur lived in Michigan until at least 1891. (James died in 1893).

After the death of Ellen's daughter, Sarah L. Morris Ballard, in 1847, the latter's daughters, Ellen M. and Sarah J., moved into the Morris house with their grandmother, Ellen. She ultimately bequeathed the farm to them. and the Beers atlas of 1869 records that "Miss E & S Ballard" were then living on the Morris homestead. Ellen died on May 9, 1877, only twelve years after her namesake grandmother, and was buried together with the Morris family in the Charlestown Cemetery. Sarah later moved to Brunswick, Maine, and died on February 23, 1925; nevertheless, she was buried next to Ellen in Charlestown.

At the beginning of the last quarter of the nineteenth century, the Morris homestead underwent both a change of ownership and a marked revival. Leonidas Barry, whose ancestors had settled in Rockingham township a century earlier (1776), purchased the property in 1875. The son of Aldis and Luthera (Lovell) Barry, Leonidas was born in Rockingham on December 29, 1844. Barry was a vigorous 31 years of age when he acquired the farm. Three years earlier, on October 1, 1872, he had married Jane Britton, born October 13, 1846 in Springfield. Two children were born to the couple during their first few years of residency on the Morris farm. Lena L. Barry was born on December 21, 1877, and Leon H. W. followed on November 8, 1881.

Leonidas Barry seems to have been relatively wealthy or to have achieved financial success soon after acquiring the Morris farm. His residence, however, must have appeared markedly old-fashioned in comparison with the elaborate Italianate and Second Empire houses then being erected for successful merchants and industrialists in Springfield. Apparently in 1878, Barry undertook a remodeling of the house to give it a more nearly contemporary appearance. The window casing board in the northeast parlor bearing Samuel Lewis' signature also bears the signature of one E. D. S[indecipherable] and the date 1878, indicating that he was the responsible carpenter.

The exterior alterations of the main block were concentrated on the main (east) facade most noticeable from the public highway. The central entrance was rebuilt; double-leaf Italianate doors with segmental-arched, etched vertical lights were installed to replace the original counterpart, and an Ionic entablature like those above the first-story windows was added in place of a fanlight. The window openings on the first story were lengthened downward and large two-over-two sash were fitted in place of probably the original twelve-over-twelve sash. The most striking change, however, involved the addition of a five-bay Italianate porch spanning the entire facade. The porch incorporated heavy paneled pillars resting on pedestals and supporting the segmental-arched, molded spandrels.

Possibly during the same project, the house's original rear (west) kitchen ell was detached and subsequently moved about one-half mile northward where it was made into a separate house. A new one-and-one-half-story kitchen ell was then constructed on the Morris house, its slate-shingled gable roof reaching nearly to the ridge of the main block's roof. The origin of the smaller-scale former shed connected to the west facade of the kitchen ell is not known; it may predate the kitchen ell. The final block in the connected series, the carriage barn, also appears to date from the late nineteenth century and the Barry ownership.

Similarly, the 103-foot-long stock barn almost certainly was erected for Leonidas Barry . Its great scale, raised main level with a longitudinal drive floor reached by high drives, basement stable, and circular-sawn framing materials strongly indicate an origin during the last quarter of the nineteenth century. On the other hand, the Greek Revival decorative features of its cupola interject conflicting evidence, suggesting an origin earlier in the century.

The Eleventh Census of the United States, enumerated in 1880, provides a statistical record of Leonidas Barry's agricultural enterprise. The farm then encompassed some 303 acres of land. Slightly more than half (153 acres) were "improved," 150 being the category of tilled and 3 being "other," such as orchards. One hundred acres of this land were mown for hay. This portion would have been the bottomland along the Connecticut River, extending a considerable distance both north and south of the buildings. The remaining 150 acres were "unimproved," such as woodland. This would have been located along the flank of Skitchewaug Mountain west of the buildings. The cash value of the farm was the relatively high amount of $20,000, and the farm implements and machinery were valued at an additional $500.

Barry was engaged in a diversity of activities, including various livestock, field crops, orchard products, and wood cutting. The value of his livestock was estimated at $700. Cattle accounted for most of that amount, there being four milch cows, two working oxen, and forty "other cattle." He also owned three horses, three sheep, and fifty poultry. The products relating to the livestock included 400 pounds of butter, fifteen pounds of wool, and 250 dozen eggs.

The cultivated field crops were dominated by oats and Indian corn. Barry devoted eleven acres to each of those, and harvested 700 bushels of oats and 600 bushels of corn. He also raised 75 bushels of Irish potatoes on three-quarters of an acre. In order to feed his livestock during the winter, Barry mowed the large quantity of 175 tons of hay.

Among products relating to trees, Barry kept an apple orchard of twenty-five trees on one acre that yielded a crop worth $25. He boiled eight gallons of maple syrup, then called "molasses," but did not report making any maple sugar, the more usual nineteenth century product. And he cut 55 cords of wood worth $75. Much of that wood was undoubtedly burned in the effort to heat the spacious (and inevitably drafty) house.

The total value of all "productions" on Barry's farm during the year 1879 reached $2,675. That amount surpasses the values for most other farms in the region.

Child's Windsor County gazetteer published in 1884 reveals more specifically the nature of Barry's principal activities. He is described as the proprietor of the Forest Home Stock Farm, and farmer of 300 acres. He was a "breeder of full blood Devon cattle, registered full blood Berkshire hogs, [and] breeder of light Bramah fowls." The rather large number of "other cattle" listed in the 1880 census reflects his breeding Devon stock. However, the census does not list any swine, indicating that Barry started raising the Berkshire hogs during the early 1880s. The census number of poultry presumably includes the Bramah fowls and possibly other laying hens.

The local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution was organized in 1908 and, somewhat ironically. took the name of General Lewis Morris for their group. In September, 1925, they placed a monument commemorating their namesake beside the River Road in front of the Morris house. Designed by C. R. Ranney, the rock faced granite block bears a cast bronze plaque that lists some of his accomplishments. The main highway (U. S. Route 5) through the valley was relocated during the 1950s along the west edge of the Morris farm fields behind the house. The monument was subsequently moved to a point beside the new highway opposite the buildings. (And the D. A. R. chapter has been disbanded.)

After the conclusion of the Barry ownership, the farm entered a long period of gradual decline. A subsequent owner attempted to take advantage of the demand among wealthy urbanites for summer homes in Vermont, a demand that increased markedly after the First World War. A sale brochure for the "Old Colonial Homestead of Gen. Lewis Morris," subtitled "An Ideal Summer Home," was issued by Joseph LaFrank in the late 1920s, extolling the merits of "one of the finest locations in the entire state." The house received the most overwrought accolade. "It is doubtful if anywhere in New England can be found a duplicate for this finest type of Colonial architecture, especially one still in its original condition and untarnished by the hand of time." (The Italianate alterations made in 1878, of course, were overlooked.) The brochure reveals that the house had also been given some modern services. "The house has recently been equipped with a electric lights. which do not detract in the least from the value or interest of the appointments."

The brochure ignores the agricultural character of the property, instead interpreting it for recreational usage. Twenty-five acres of land were offered with the house: "the finest meadow land and more if wished, which might be easily utilized for tennis courts or whatever might suit the owner's desire." The stock and corn barns are not mentioned while the carriage barn "may be transformed into a large garage for several cars at little expense." Clearly Joseph LaFrank anticipated that farming on the property would not continue into the future. The sale brochure, however, did not succeed in its intended purpose, and the property did not become "the ideal summer home." The price may have been too high, and then the national economic collapse of the 1930s probably intruded.

One result was that the Morris House and especially the outbuildings did not receive adequate maintenance during the middle twentieth century. A photograph published in 1944 shows the house apparently closed and vacant. Later it was used as a nursing home, probably to its physical detriment, The house was inspected in August, 1959 by Frank Roos of the Historic American Buildings Survey, who reported it "in poor state of repair."

The barns and land, meanwhile, were being used for dairy farming by tenant farmer(s). At least one major improvement was made to the stock barn during this period. A concrete floor was poured in the ground-level stable where the dairy cows were kept in wood and metal stanchions. The dairying continued until the early 1960s.

In 1966, Robert and Mary Fraser purchased the house and undertook the formidable task of rehabilitating it. Their efforts during the following decade were directed at basic repairs, renewal of utility services, and interior decoration. The installation of a central heating system caused the removal of some original interior woodwork, particularly baseboards, in the main block. Exterior changes were limited to the first story of the kitchen ell and shed wing.

The current owners of the Morris homestead, Peter and Sandra Mollica, acquired the property in May, 1978. It then consisted of the house and a surrounding two-acre lot that had been subdivided from the barns and the contiguous farmland. Three years later, in 1981, the Mollicas purchased 70 additional acres (including the barns) lying between River Road and U. S. Route 5 on the east and west and adjacent house lots on the north and south. The larger area had previously belonged in Morris-Barry ownership at least until the early twentieth century.

Precisely one century after the Italianate remodeling of the Morris house, the Mollicas undertook in 1978 an extensive project to rehabilitate and restore the house's eighteenth-century character. This project generally involved the removal of the Italianate and other latter nineteenth-century fabric from the house, and its replacement by fabric appropriate to the original eighteenth-century design and type. Sandra Mollica served as the architect of the project. The staff of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities in Boston was consulted regarding the treatment of certain stylistic features.

The exterior carpentry was performed by E. O. Blankenship and son from Alexandria, Virginia, who had previously worked on houses owned by the Mollicas during their residency in that city. Most of the exterior carpentry and painting was accomplished during the summer of 1978 although the Blankenships returned also in 1979 to complete their work. The interior carpentry, plastering, and painting were done 1argely by the Mollicas themselves. The latter work continued for a decade after 1978.

Once again, the most obvious changes were made to the main facade. The double-leaf Italianate doors were removed from the entrance, and the opening was reduced to accommodate a new single-leaf solid door with six raised panels. An infilled semicircular area was discovered above the door, indicating the previous existence of a fanlight of that form. Accordingly, a semicircular fanlight with radiating muntins was mounted in that reopened area. The window openings on the first story were shortened to their original length, and new twelve-over-twelve sash were installed in place of the elongated two-over-two sash.

The problem of the Italianate porch was resolved by its collapse from snow load during the winter of 1977. The porch was entirely removed from the main facade early in the 1978 project. Components in usable condition were then reassembled (together with a deck and roof built c. 1970 by previous owners) into a three-bay version on the rear ell's south facade.

The exterior rehabilitation of the house and connected blocks was virtually completed by 1980. The stock and corn barns along with the carriage shed, however, remained in separate ownership and continued to deteriorate. Indeed, the roof of the carriage shed had collapsed by the time the Mollicas gained possession in 1981, and the remains of the building were removed in 1982. During the winter of 1982, the stock barn suffered a similar event when the central part of its roof's north slope collapsed under the weight of snow.

The Mollicas undertook repairs to the barn the following spring (1982). Ronald Brown of the adjoining town of Weathersfield, Vermont contracted for the project. It involved reconstructing portion of the post-and-beam frame with new timbers, replacing the missing rafters, and replacing the exterior boards-and battens. Additionally, the entire roof was sheathed with corrugated sheet metal.

A different kind of agriculture, or more specifically silviculture, was initiated in the spring of 1982 on the fields surrounding the buildings. The Mollicas then began to plant coniferous trees, predominantly Fraser firs, for cutting and sale after a few years as Christmas trees. Subsequently that has become the primary activity conducted by the Mollicas on the former fields.

Another substantial project of improvement to the barns has occurred during 1990. Both the stock and corn barns have been given general repairs and minor modifications. The most noticeable change involved the installation of four vehicle entrances with sliding doors on the ground level of the stock barn's south eaves facade. These doors facilitate the current usage of the concrete-floored former cow stable for mechanical equipment relating to the production of Christmas trees. Both barns were stained (red) on the exterior.

At the present point in time (late 1990), the General Lewis R. Morris House and outbuildings are in excellent physical condition. Furthermore, the appearance of the house's main block reflects a careful attempt by the current owners, based on analysis of available evidence, to recreate its original late eighteenth-century stylistic character. The house, therefore, represents effectively both the sophisticated architectural expression of its original builder, Samuel Lewis, and the wealth and social status of its original owner, Lewis Morris. Deriving from a different period and owner, the outbuildings similarly convey a strong sense of the agricultural success achieved here by Leonidas Barry during the latter nineteenth century. The entity of buildings and surrounding farmland thus retains its stature as the premier estate in this portion of the Connecticut River valley.


Aldrich, Lewis Cass, and Frank R Holmes, eds. History of Windsor County, Vermont. Syracuse, N. Y.: D. Mason & Co., 1891.

Baker, Mary Eva. Folklore of Springfield, Vermont. Springfield, Vt.: The Altrurian Club, 1922.

Barney, Keith Richard. The History of Springfield, Vermont 1885-1961. Springfield, Vt.: William L. Bryant Foundation, 1972.

Basso, Lewis G. Historical Notes on Three of the First Settlers of Springfield, Vermont - John Nott, Col. John Barrett, Gen. Lewis Morris. Springfield, Vt., 1967.

Beers, F. W., et al. Atlas of Windsor, County, Vermont. New York; F. W. Beers, A. D. Ellis, and G. G. Soule, 1869.

Dennis, Peter. "General Lewis Morris Home Restoration Reflects Life 200 Years Ago." Springfield (Vt.) Reporter, September 28, 1983, 2.

Detwiller, Frederic C. General Lewis Morris House c. 1795--Field Inspection Report. Typescript report from the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, Boston, Mass., 1978.

Ellis, Mary W. "Lewis Richard Morris." Vermont Quarterly, XII (October, 1944), 190-207.

Hubbard, C. Horace and Justus Dartt. History of the Town of Springfield, Vermont, with a Genealogical Record. Boston: Geo. H. Walker & Co., 1895.

Luce, Gladness Wharton, ed. Historic Houses of Springfield, Vermont. Springfield, Vt.: The Historical Committee of the Miller Art Center, c. 1968.

Mayforth, Mabel W. "General Morris House, Springfield." Modern Health Crusader, 21 (April-May, 1938), 1, 6-7.

Old Colonial Homestead of Gen. Lewis Morris. Brochure advertising property for sale by owner, Joseph J. LaFrank, Springfield, Vt. c. 1925? Collection of Peter and Sandra Mollica, Springfield, Vt.

Reynolds, Ann. "A Tale of Two House." Claremont, N. H. Springfield, Vt. Eagle-Times, Impact section. October 23, 1977, 6C-8C.

Seventh Census of the United States. Original Returns of the Assistant Marshals. Fourth Series. Agricultural Productions. June 30, 1850.

Spaulding, E. Wilder. "Morris, Lewis Richard." in Malone, Dumas, ed. Dictionary of American Biography (Vol. XIII). New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1934.

Tenth Census of the United States. Original returns regarding agricultural productions in Springfield, Vt. June, 1880.

Inventory of the estate of Lewis R. Morris filed January 10, 1826 by the executors, Ellen and Lewis Morris. Recorded in Volume 10, Page 340 et seq. of the Windsor County Probate Court, Springfield, Vt.

Program for the dedication of the roadside monument marking the Gen. Lewis R. Morris Homestead, September 19, 1925. Gen. Lewis Morris Chapter, D. A. R., Springfield, Vt. Collection of Peter and Sandra Mollica, Springfield, Vt.

FORM PREPARED BY: Hugh H. Henry, Historic Preservation Consultant, RD #2, Box 226, Green Mountain Turnpike, Chester, VT. 05143-9418 Tel: 802-875-3379. Date: December 1990.

DATE ENTERED: June 25, 1992.
(Source 127)