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FORM B - BUILDING In Area no. Form no.

MASSACHUSETTSHISTORICAL COMMISSION / ;;L.


Office of the Secretary, State House, Boston

1. Town Marlborough

Address Spoonhill Ave.

Name Josiah Stow Homestead


Present use Residence
2.

Present owner Luther Crist


3. Description: 2t story center chimney

Date 1713
Source Pub. local histories

.Ct Style Colonial


. ,.,..,...,-~
4. M W sKetch of building location Architect
in relation to nearest cross streets and
other buildings. Indicate north. Exterior wall fabric Clapboard

Outbuildings (describe) __ N_o_n_e _

Other features Fenestration suggests


one room plan developing into two
H
o room plan.
S
---_..-I~ Altered Date
iA6--~R c.~ e, 0
Moved Date
OR @ 5. Lot size:
os One acre or less Over one acre X

Tn Approximate frontage 150 feet

Approximate distance of building from street

100 feet
o NOT WRITE IN THIS:SPACE 6. Recorded by__ Ern
__e_s_t_G_inn
__e_t_t_i _
USGSQuadrant \

HC Photo no.
S"___ Organization Marlborough Historical
Comm1..ss1..on
'\ Date_1_2 1_29.-..1_7_6 _

"\ (ovexRECE\\jED

SM-2-75-R061465~ (20M-2~76) \ ~
\

.. \
7. Originalowner (ifknown) Jabez Stowe
Originaluse Farm
------------------------------
Subsequentuses (ifany)and dates Residence
--------------------------
8. Themes (checkas many as applicable)

Aboriginal Conservation Recreation


Agrtcultural x Education Religion
Architectural X Exploration/ Science/
The Arts settlement invention
Commerce Industry x Social!
Communication Military humanitarian
Community development Political --x- Transportation
9. Historicalsignificance
(includeexplanation ofthemes checked above)
On the above farm, whose buildings are hardly visible from any road,
situated as it is among trees and ledge lived Jabez Stowe and ~vife.
Their daughter P~tty had married Phineas Welchp(a descendant of Paul
Welch who settled in Bolton in 1740) and they took the farm and remained
here at the homestead caring for the aged parents. the farm was then
not one of the most fertile, but Phineas Welch was a hard-working man
and soon accumulated property and lived comfortably. Among their seven
children was Josiah Stowe Welch, born 1825, and married Lydia Stowe in
1848. He had early learned the trade of cutter and soon had the distinctio·
of using the first sole and upper leather ever cut in Marlborough. In
1849 in company with his brother-in-law Edmund Stowe he began making shoes.
Soon he was in busine~s for himself and became quite a prominent citize~
being one of the Incorpor~tors of the Hudson National Bank, Trustee of
the Hudson Savings Bank, Town Treasurer and numerous other offices. He
died in Hudson, October 1, 1909 age 84 years.

10. Bibliographyand/or references(suchas localhistories,


deeds, assessor'srecords,
early maps, etc.)
Historical Reminisces of Marlborough, Ella Bigelow, 1910

1803 map of Marlboro:ugh, Silas Holman Surveyor

..•..
• .'.
, -
INVENTORY FORM CONTINUATION SHEET Community Property

Marlborough Samuel (?)ffhomas


Stow House
Massachusetts Historical Commission
80 Boylston Street Area(s) Form No.
Boston, Massachusetts 02116 AA 12

Additional information by Anne Forbes, consultant to Marlborough Historical Commission,


6/21/95:

ASSESSOR'S #45-71 less than one acre PHOTO #95-17: 37

ARCHlTECfURAL DESCRIPTION.
Certainly one of the oldest houses in Marlborough, at least part of this structure may date to the
late seventeenth century. (See below.) It still faces south, as if ignoring the road in favor of the
sun that would have warmed it through all its early winters. It is one of the better-preserved of
Marlborough's very old houses, still clad in clapboards, and standing on a fieldstone foundation.
It is a 2 1I2-story house, one-room-deep, with an asymmetrical four-bay facade, the fenestration of
which suggests that it may have begun as a three-bay "half-house", with the west end added
relatively soon after the east portion. Spanning the rear west end of the main house is a one-story
leanto, which connects to a two-part, one-story ell that stands perpendicular to the east end of the
main house. Abutting the north end of the ell is a modem two-car garage. Most windows in the
building are 6-over-9-sash, in projecting surrounds. A fixed 6-light window is located under each
end gable. The architectural trim includes narrow comer boards, and a molding under the shallow
front overhang of the roof. The main entry has a 4-panel door with four lights across the top; its
surround has been altered, and a later pediment added. A second door, with six lights, is located
on the south side of the ell.

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE, cont.


At the end ofElIa Bigelow's narrative on the Stow/Welch farm, she makes the tantalizing statement
that Charles Welch and his sister Emily "make the sixth and last generation" of the family to live
there. If Charles was indeed Josiah Welch's brother, it would mean that part of the house, at least,
was built by the first member of the Stowee) family to settle in Marlborough, Samuel Stow.
Certainly the house may predate 1721, the year of Samuel's death, but it is uncertain whether it
would have been built by him, (if so, it was probably constructed in the late seventeenth century),
or by his son, Thomas.

According to Hudson, it was apparently in the 1670's that Samuel Stow (1645-1721) came here
from Connecticut (where his father, Thomas Stow, had moved after several years in Concord). He
was a proprietor of Marlborough, had evidently served in King Philip's War, and was one of the
signers of the petition for the Ockoocangansett (Indian) Plantation in 1677. Then in 1684,
according to Hudson, he "bought of Waban and James Atchuit, two Indians of Natick, for 6
pounds--3 pounds in money and 3 pounds in corn--twenty acres of land in Marlborough." It is
likely that "Waban" was Thomas Waban, son of "Old Waban" (d. 1674), who was reputed to have
been the first Indian convert in the Bay Colony. James Atchuit may have been the man known as
"Great James". In the early part of 1684 these two men, much to the anger of other Marlborough
Indians, were engaged in illegally selling, without the authorization of the General Court, and for
their own profit, parcels of land within the Indian plantation. (Cont.)
'INVENTORY FORM CONTINUATION SHEET Community Property

Marlborough Samuel(?) /Thomas


Stow House
Massachusetts Historical Commission
80 Boylston Street Area(s) Form No.
Boston, Massachusetts 02116 AA 12

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE, cont.


Partially to stop these sales, the colonists obtained a deed to the entire Indian plantation, even
though it was clear that the General Court would not recognize it as legal. Even so, in 1686 the
proprietors of Marlborough laid out parcels and divided the Indian plantation anyway, and held a
lottery to apportion 30-acre parcels of upland in it to each of them. Since Samuel Stow's name
appears on the list of recipients, it is not clear whether the land on which this house stands was part
of his 1684 illegal purchase, a piece of the 30-acre parcel he drew, or another piece of land.

Among the children of Samuel Stow and his wife, Elizabeth, was Thomas Stow (1682-1765). He
married Hannah Johnson in 1713, another date which has been suggested for the house, and which
is presently painted on the chimney. At the very least, the building is likely to have been enlarged
around that time. Future deed research is likely to confirm what Thomas Stow's will, and the map
of 1803, already suggest--that the next owner of the farm was his youngest son, Josiah Stow, (1730-
1818), who was charged in the will with providing for the support of his mother, Hannah, for the
rest of her life. (She died in 1789). Josiah, like many of his generation, took part in two wars, the
first for England, and the second against it. As a young man, he was a member of Captain Weeks'
company in the French and Indian War, (organized 1757), and in his early 50's he was a delegate
from Marlborough to the last two Committees of Correspondence during the Revolution, in 1781
and 1782.

Two of Josiah and Ruth's sons, Joel and Jabez, married sisters, Elizabeth and Sarah Barnes. By
1798, Jabez (b. 1769), who had married Sarah in 1792, owned part of the house, while his aging
father owned the other part. As the 1978 inventory form points out, Jabez carried on the tradition
of living here and caring for his parents, who lived to be 87 and 76. Like his father, J abez was also
a loyal and respected citizen of Marlborough, and served on the Board of Selectmen in 1814.

As to the Welches, who apparently inherited the entire farm after Jabez and Sarah died, maps show
that Charles Welch had come into the property's ownership by 1875.

ADDITIONAL BIBLIOGRAPHY.
Maps and atlases: 1803, 1830, 1835, 1853, 1856, 1875, 1889, 1900.
Marlboro vital records.
Marlboro directories and tax valuations.
Bigelow, James. "Photographs and Descriptions of Some Old Houses in Marlbrough, Mass." 1927.
Hurd, D.H. History of Middlesex County. 1890.

[X] Recommended for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. If checked, a completed
National Register Criteria Statement form is attached.
INVENTORY FORM CONTINUATION SHEET Community Property

Marlborough Samuel(?)ffhomas
Stow House
Massachusetts Historical Commission
80 BoyJston Street Area(s) FOTID No.
Boston, Massachusetts 02116 AA 12
Massachusetts Historical Commission Community Property Address
80 Boylston Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02116 Marlborough 33 Spoonhill Avenue

Area(s) Form No(s).


AA 12

National Register of Historic Places Criteria Statement Form

Check all that apply:

[x] Individually eligible [ ] Eligible only in a historic district


[ ] Contributing to a potential historic district [] Potential historic district

Criteria: [x] A [] B [x] C [] D

Criteria Considerations: [] A [] B [] C [] D [] E [] F [] G

Statement of Significance by _An_n_e~F~o~rb~e~s _


The criteria that are checked in the above sections must be justified here.

Except for the alteration of its entries, the Samuel (?)ffhomas Stow House meets Criterion C as an
excellent example of a four-bay, 2 1/2-story First Period house that exhibits a typical eigihteenth-
century growth pattern. For its association with members of the earliest generations in Marlborough
of the large and influential Stow family, and four or five generations of their descendants, as well as
for Committee of Correspondence member Josiah Stow, it also meets Criterion A.

The property retains integrity of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and
association.

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