Oxford Tree-Ring Laboratory - Rhode Island

Rhode Island

Clemence-Irons House

Clemence-Irons House, 38 George Waterman Road, Johnston, RI (41.840912, -71.485194)

Primary house Felling Date: Winter 1690/91

The Clemence-Irons House was built in 1691 by Richard Clemence, who inherited the property, then part of Providence, in 1688 from his father, Thomas. The property remained in the Clemence family until 1744. Subsequently it passed to several owners before being purchased by Ellen F. Irons in 1892. In 1938, the house was acquired by the Sharpe family who restored it. Norman Isham and John Hutchins Cady, restoration architects and experts on early architecture, directed the restoration. In 1947 the Sharpe family deeded the property to SPNEA.

The Clemence-Irons House was built as a four-room-plan, story-and-one-half Rhode Island stone-ender with a lean-to in the rear. A stone chimney covers the two thirds of the exterior wall. Only the portion of the stack next to the front room and chamber is original. The part of the stack serving the kitchen was reconstructed on the basis of physical evidence in 1938. The house had grown considerably before the restoration; only the framing, part of the chimney, and some miscellaneous elements survived the later changes. The house was restored to a presumed seventeenth century appearance that now accurately portrays the spatial divisions and massing of the original structure.

Miles, D H, Worthington, M J, and Grady, A A, 2003span style="mso-spacerun:yes" ““Development of Standard Tree-Ring Chronologies for Dating Historic Structures in Eastern Massachusetts Phase III”, ODL unpubl rep 2003/9

Link to the Historic New England webpage here.




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Contact Information

Oxford Tree-Ring Laboratory

Michael Worthington
Jane Seiter, Ph.D

25 E. Montgomery St.
Baltimore, MD 21230