Edgar Young House – Circa 1888
In 1890, Edgar and Anne Young purchased a house on High Street Extension from Mary E. Ford for $900. Ford was a local real estate agent who had built and rented many properties in Willimantic during its boom period of the 1880s. From 1906 to 1920 Young was employed by the American Thread Company as an engineer and then as foreman in the carding room – the mill’s noisiest and most dangerous department. Young is a prime example of the rise of Willimantic’s skilled elite – the lower middle class. Their higher wages allowed them to purchase small properties.
Albert Young inherited the property from his father, and moved there in 1927. His wife Emma ran a telephone answering service from the rear of the house. Mr. Young retired in 1947, as foreman for the Southern New England Telephone Company. During his early years, he was a well-known sportsman, his specialties being fox hunting and trapping.
Upon the death of the childless couple in 1975, the owners bought the house and made some modernizations. While the house was built during Victorian times, the interior is largely contemporary in appearance. However, the art displayed reflects many periods. Both the living room and dining room ceilings have original plaster medallions. There is a storage chest in the kitchen (probably for wood). Note the colored glass in the transom above the front door and in a circular window part way up the stairs. Everything seen through the one on the stairs has a lovely rosy hue.
The upstairs bathroom was added after the house was constructed was as the central heating system. The original claw-footed bathtub is still in use. All areas upstairs, except the bathroom, are floored with wide pine boards. The property contains the original well and three-hole (two adult, one child) privy connected to a garden shed. The privy has the typical crescent moon cut-out at the far end.
Visitors may be interested to note that this house is the twin to a home in the neighborhood. Both have porches which feature rope design and have attractively paneled bay windows. While the floor plans are almost identical, visitors will appreciate the totally different style of interior decoration.