Willimantic, Connecticut, c. 1737
Moved to OSV, 1939
This symmetrical Cape-style home, which has a gambrel roof and a kitchen ell off the back of the building, had several additions through about 1820. With its white picket fence, rose trellis at the door, and a colorful flower garden designed for the children in the side yard, the Fitch House suggests the prosperity of a center village tradesman. The garden’s circular layout, bright blossoms, and rustic arbor of birch saplings is based on one of New England’s earliest books of horticulture advice, “The Young Florist”, written by Joseph Breck in Boston in 1833.
The Fitch House also features several outbuildings, including an original corn barn from Scituate, Rhode Island, built around 1790–1820, and a reproduction woodshed, which also houses the family privy (toilet). The large reproduction barn was built by Old Sturbridge Village in 1968 using the frame of an old barn from Westfield, MA. It contains an exhibit, “Tools of Agricultural Change”, which displays part of Old Sturbridge Village’s extensive collection of agricultural tools and equipment.