Thomaston History 

Home for the Holidays in Thomaston 2016


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The Joseph Sprague, Esq. House

The Thomaston Historical Society
presents its tenth annual
Home For The Holidays Event

Where: The Joseph Sprague, Esq. House
225 Main Street Street
Thomaston, Maine

When: Friday Night, December 9th
Saturday, December 10th, 2016

Time: Friday night  5 to 7 P.M.
Saturday  10 A.M. to 3 P.M.


Please join us on Friday for our Wine Reception
with music by the Harborside Harmony Chorus and Live Auction
with local auctioneer Bruce Gamage
and on
Saturday for our Open House and continuing silent auction.

Please contact Frances Hernandez at 354-6924 for tickets.
or send your check to the society at P.O. Box 384,
Thomaston, ME 04861

Saturday, open to the public
Tour of the house,  silent auction.

Event Poster       Live Auction Item List

Our beautiful gold on brass Christmas tree ornament
of the Barnabus Webb ship will be available for purchase at both events.

Cost: Tickets for Friday night are $20 per person, $18 for members

Friday night tickets are good for both Friday and Saturday
Saturday $10 per person,  $8 for members

Why: Proceeds from this event will benefit the
Thomaston Historical Society’s
fund dedicated to the major restoration
needed for the 1794 home known as
The Knox Farmhouse Museum,
the only remaining original building of the
General Henry Knox estate.

Who: We wish to thank  Dr. and Mrs. William Colvin
for opening their historic house
to the public for this event.

About the House   

The 2016 Home for the Holidays house was built in 1808 and is the oldest house featured thus far by the Thomaston Historical Society.

The Joseph Sprague, Esq. House, 225 Main Street, is located west of the Dr. J.E. Walker House, the first Home for the Holidays selected in 2007. Built in 1808, this house is over 200 years old and is among Thomaston’s earliest surviving architectural examples. It is believed that Andrew Ellison, a tailor, built this Adam style house but then removed to Boston with his family around 1812. He sold the house to Joseph Sprague, Esq. (1750-1826), graduate of Bowdoin College, who came to Thomaston to open a lawyer’s office at Mill River.

Joseph and his wife lived here with their five children: Joseph, who drowned in 1837 when washed overboard near New Orleans while a mate on Brig Paragon; Capt. John Oakman, a Thomaston sea captain; Capt. James Thomas, a Thomaston sea captain, who married Harriet Gilchrest Webb; Sarah M., who married Leonard C. Stetson; and the youngest son, William, who lived but three months. Lawyer Sprague died at the early age of 38 at which time the property was conveyed to Captain Oliver W. Jordan.

For 68 years many members of the Jordan family lived here before the property was sold to William and Addie Catland. William operated the livery stable behind the Knox Hotel in which the historic fire of 1915 started. Levi B. Gilchrest inherited the house in 1933 and his widow sold the property to Lionel Jealous in 1936.

While under ownership of the Jealous family, extensive renovations were made using architectural features of the Adam and Georgian period (1780-1820). The front entry was greatly altered with the incorporation of several windows removed from the former Catholic Church next to the Thomaston Academy on Main Street. The front entry was greatly changed with the addition of an semi-elliptical fanlight that repeats the upper portions of the church windows, and the addition of an oversized Palladian style window on the second floor, echoing the elliptical fanlight over the door below. Smaller elliptical windows were incorporated over the doors of the former kitchen, now the dining room, while interior paneling reflects an earlier period.

Thomaston was known for its beautiful doorways. Mr. Jealous may have received inspiration for the front door surround from the Edward Robinson Door at 78 Main Street. The column element beside the entry may have also prompted the full column supports for the added porch and later pergola.

In spite of alterations throughout the years - including a redesign of the interior space, removal of a front porch with pergola replacement, and second floor addition over the kitchen - the house still retains an early 19th century appearance due to the preservation of many architectural features. The home has been well cared for over the years and has been gracefully transformed into a light and airy living space.

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The nine pictures above are of the Adamesque Mantelpiece in the southeast parlor, Beehive Oven and Woodbox in the original kitchen, interior semi-elliptical Over Door Window, Handpainted Faux Marble Mantelpiece in the Bowdoin Room, Butler's Pantry Annunciator, Thomaston Black Marble Hearth in the upstairs east bedchamber and, in the bottom row photos of the front doors discussed above - the Edward Robinson Entry, the Jealous Door during the 1940s and 1950s, and the entry today.


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