Keith House

1460 Vernon St

1798

Architectural Style

Colonial

Significance

Architecture

Use Type

Single Family Dwelling House

Neighborhood

Massachusetts Historical Commission Report

Architectural Significance

Built c. 1780-1800, this charming late Georgian frame cottage rises 2 stories from below street grade level to a gable roof with a center chimney. Its 5-bay main facade features a front door with a fores paire transom. Its windows are fully enframed, possess wedge shaped lintels and contains 6/6 wood sash. The current owners are involved in a sensitive renovation of their late 18th century cottage.

Historical Significance

Together with its rural setting, this house provides a glimpse of an isolated, late 18th century cottage. J. E. Crane's 1801 map of Vernon St. and vicinity indicates that this house was owned either by a "J" or a William Keith. To the immediate south of this house, Crane indicates a Pratt's Bridge (Bridge to Middleborough) over the Taunton River. This river was deep enough at this point to facilitate ship building—this trade was conducted during the late 18th and early 19th century at Joseph Holmer sawmill, just to the west of Vernon St. Captain Benjamin Pratt built several ships here after Mr. Holmes, up to 230 tons for coastal trade. This shipyard continued as a sawmill and was gradually phased out. At any rate, this house has associations with Bridgewater's mid 19th c. shoe trade—John A. Keith and Edgar D. Keith worked in this house as cobblers from c. 1845-1880. By the early 1900's an E. Benson lived here.