A Little Bit of Hamilton House History

"The Georgian-period mansion called Hamilton House is sited spectacularly on a bluff overlooking the Salmon Falls River. It was built ca. 1785 in South Berwick, Maine, by shipping merchant Jonathan Hamilton. A hundred years later, the house, decrepit but largely unchanged, became the summer retreat of Emily Tyson and her stepdaughter Elise. The women had been introduced to the Piscataqua area by writer Sarah Orne Jewett, owner of a historic house nearby, who wanted to find the right buyer lest Hamilton House be razed.


Along with Elizabeth Bishop Perkins and her mother Mary Soules Perkins, who were restoring an old house in York, these women all but created the Colonial Revival interior. Even before such icons as Henry Davis Sleeper’s Beauport, John D. Rockefeller’s Williamsburg, and Henry Francis du Pont’s Winterthur, the Maine women introduced motifs and conventions that still influence taste today.


Hamilton House, a property of Historic New England since 1949, has been interpreted as a quintessential Colonial Revival country estate to reflect the occupancy of the Tysons in the early 20th century. Restoration since the 1980s has been based on photos taken for House Beautiful in 1929. An amateur photographer, Elise Tyson also left documentation of the house and gardens."


The above appeared as part of an article in Old House Journal.


I chose to portray this graphic art piece of Hamilton House as viewed from Vaughan Woods State Park in South Berwick, Maine, which abuts the property. This lovely historic home on the banks of the Salmon Falls River is a wonderful place to visit if you enjoy birding and walking among stunning flower gardens. If you're looking for a peaceful setting of simpler times, this is the place to go!


You can read about the complete history of the property on the Historic New England website.

Like this artwork? You can purchase prints in my online shop.

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