Bassett - Conant House

46 Main St

1860

Architectural Style

Second Empire

Significance

Architecture

Use Type

Hotel or Inn, Single Family Dwelling House

Neighborhood

Bridgewater Town Center

Massachusetts Historical Commission Report

Architectural Significance

This is a good and relatively rare example of the Italianate-Mansard style in Bridgewater. Possessing an irregular plan and clad with clapboards, it features an encircling, champfered post verandah, full-length ground floor windows, original multipanel double doors, simply enframed 2/2 wood sash windows, bracketed cornice, bell cast mansar roof (with most of its slate shingles intact) and a distinctive cupola with arched windows. This house has been greatly enlarged c. mid 20th c.

Historical Significance

Built ca. 1860, this stylish Italianate-Mansard house was built ca. 1860 for a George W. Bassett and was for many years the home of Mr. Bassett's son-in-law Ira M. Conant. Mr. Conant was born in Bridgewater Jan 3, 1827 and was educated at Bridgewater Academy—as a boy he was a clerk in Cobb and Sawin and Lewis Holmes' stores. Fore several years he operated a dry goods store in Attleborough and later manufactured hoop skirts in Boston. He was remembered as a "pioneer in the manufacture of gossamer rubber goods." Mr. Conant acquired this property c. 1865 and apparently added the cupola crowned mansard roof c. 1870s. This house is currently known as the Old Iron Fence Inn guest house—until recently an ornate late 19th c. cast iron fence was located along the street-facing edge of this property.