Leonard, Spencer Jr. House

132 Whitman St

1852

Architectural Style

Italianate

Significance

Architecture

Use Type

Single Family Dwelling House

Neighborhood

Massachusetts Historical Commission Report

Architectural Significance

This is a solid example of a mid 19th century 2 1/2 story side hall plan Italianate frame vernacular house. To the rear is a one story ell. Particularly noteworthy is the 19th c. multi panel front door and bracketed doorhood. In general, windows are simply enframed and contain 2/2 wood sash. It is enclosed by a gable roof with return eaves.

Historical Significance

The 1830 map indicates that the house, owned by an A.N. Harden, was located here. The present house dates to c. 1850. In 1852 it belonged to a W. Washburn. By the late 1850s Spencer Leonard, farmer and lumber dealer, lived here. He was a 7th generation, lineal descendant of Solomon Leonard, one of the first proprietors of Bridgewater. Spencer Leonard was born in 1814. His father, Spencer Sr. was drafted in defense of Plymouth during the war of 1812. His grandfather Samuel was a minuteman during the Revolutionary War. Spencer Leonard Jr. worked as a clerk in a dry goods store until age 38 when he became a farmer. Despite previous ownership by Haydens and Washburns, the farm Leonard purchased here during the early 1850s is described as the Zechariah Whitman farm. Leonard later purchased orange groves in Florida and represented the town in the state legislature, selectment, overseer of the poor, etc. By 1903 J.W. Leach, a former hand of Leonard's farm, owned this house.