Hope Historical Society

Meeting of November 27th 2012

Draft Minutes

At the Hope Corner fire station (?) President Donovan Bowley called the meeting to order at 7:00 PM (?). Also present were: Bob Appleby, Barbara Bentley, Dick & Gwen Brodis, Nancy Ford, Herb Hart, Mary Ireland, Ann Leadbetter, Jane Mitchell, presenters Chris and Lindsey Pinchbeck and Ron Smith.

(?) Your secretary was not present and asks members to fill in what they remember of committee reports, old business and new business.

Chris Pinchbeck spoke on the history of Sweetland's house, store and tavern on the north corner of Hope Corner, which the older of us remember as Allie Allen's farm. Chris and spouse Lindsey have recently dismantled the ancient building, carefully saving the old timbers and re-using them where possible in the construction of their two new buildings: an arts' studio and a bagpipe workshop.

For Chris's 49' talk, his 52 slides (old photos of the property and documentation of the 2012 dismantling, saving & re-using, and the final product) and 10' of the discussion see www.hopehist.com/oral history/24 and www.hopehist.com/pinchbeck project/photos.

Briefly, deed and other research shows the original building was built by Wade Sweetland in 1822 with brickwork by Henry Handley (builder of Hope Historical Home next door), sold to Benjamin Cushing in 1823, then to Joshua Pearse (Pierce) & Edward True, inherited by William Pearse. Title then passed to Mary Olive Drake, who became (?) an Allen. From the Allens, title passed to the Gillises, the Desrosiers and the Pinchbecks. See information on the original house which survived the ravages of time & the 1947 burning of the ell roof until 2012 and the frame of which is incorporated into the art studio. It was a 2 storey plus attic cape with 2 ells, a large barn (until 1970s) and extraordinary brickwork (2 interior chimneys and 8 fireboxes in the main house). Because Hope Corner is so wet, much could not be saved, but everything that could be saved was.

Early town records record that meetings at the original town house (behind Hatchet Mountain at the Taylor Place) were adjourned to Sweetland's tavern. If Sweetland sold it shortly after building it, why wasn't it Cushing's tavern? At least since the Allen's ownership, it was called Idalia Farm (after Moses Dakin's metaphor for Hatchet Mountain in his 1847 book; qv www.hopehist.com/Dakin's book). During de-construction, the Pinchbecks recovered numerous artifacts, including a ginger beer bottle and a buish "chain lightning" bottle.

Among the local artisans de-constructing and re-building this project was a great, great grandson of Wade Sweetland's cousin from Tenant's Harbor who told of a trunk there with town meeting notes. This hasn't been found yet.

Respectfully submitted,

Bill Jones, Secretary