Elijah Lewis House

The Elijah Lewis house was built in the time period from 1780-90.  It is located on 1 Mountain Spring Road, Farmington Ct. The person who built this is Judah Woodruff, who also built the first church in Farmington and many other houses. It was built for Elijah Lewis. He originally had the house on 738 Farmington Ave. He owned a store selling and fixing clocks. The house was turned a quarter of a rotation to the left so that the house faced the north, in 1997. It was also moved 200 feet north, so that it is now on 1 Mountain Spring Road. Today the house is maintained as a historical landmark, while functions as a principle residence. It was used as an Underground Railroad stop during the and before the Civil War. At this stop slaves were fed, and clothed, as well as protected. The chimney was used as the entrance to the “hidy-hole.” The entrance was a large rock that could be moved located at the base of the chimney. The chimney is in the dining room located in the north of the house. Another place that was used as a special access points for slaves was a cupboard in between the fireplace in the living room and the front of the staircase where the stairs divide allowed for a long narrow passage to the rear of the house without accessing the bedrooms. This kind of creativity and wonderful architecture was something way ahead of its time. During the revolutionary war Elijah was a quartermaster and later was a farmer. Before this however he was born in 1811 and grew up in the town of Granby. His was name Mary Washburn who was also born in Granby. There is no way of knowing how many fleeing slaves went through his house, but there is a definite that this house saved many lives. Also because Elijah is from Granby there is a strong possibility that he later sent slaves through Suffield or close to Suffield.

This picture is something that was sown onto a quilt so that fleeing slaves would have a clue as to where the next safe spot was.Image



This entry was posted in American Studies, HOT Log Farmington 2014, Uncategorized, Underground Railroad and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Elijah Lewis House

  1. 14bsd says:

    A really informative piece you have here Jimmy, It emphasizes how important the Elijah Lewis house really was. Why do you think that they wanted the house facing north? Maybe include a picture of this house today since it serves as a historical landmark.

  2. 14dlw says:

    This was a very well written article Jimmy, your language flows smoothly. What was the main reason Elijah Lewis started with his abolitionist work? An actual picture of the house today would have improved the HOT log. Good work!

  3. drewglennon says:

    Great Piece here Jimmy. I really liked how you were specific to one site and one person. What gives you the idea that he sent slaves North to Suffield? I think this is a very well written piece; it would be helpful as a reader if you were to possibly post your sources as well. Great Job!

  4. jackfrank18 says:

    This is a very well written piece, Jimmy. Do you think that the re-location of the house made a significant difference in the functioning of this house on the Underground Railroad? I would bring this work back to our original mission, in regards to Suffield’s involvement in the Underground Railroad.

  5. Ben N says:

    Great post, Jimmy. You included many details about the house and the various crawling spaces. Do you think the crawl spaces that served as hideouts were constructed when the house was built or when the owner took it upon himself to assist fugitive slaves? How does this connect to Suffield and the class’s ultimate goal? I think you should figure out how this information can help our group.

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