Lime Rock Historic District

View of Leonard Richardson House; Source - NRIS 84001064.
Historic/Common Name:
Salisbury »
Year of Establishment:
Historic Designation:
District Authority:
Historic District Commission
Nature of Authority:
District Character:
Industrial Community
Eligible for Historic Home tax credits:
General description:

Lime Rock is a former industrial village located in the southeastern section of the Town of Salisbury, Connecticut. The village lies along the Salmon Fell Kill or Salmon Creek and is divided into two sections joined by the creek. The northwestern portion of the village is centered around the remains of a nineteenth-century blast furnace and is dominated by the wooded slopes of Forge Mountain, which rise over 400 feet above the village. The southeastern section of the village is downstream of the remains of a large mill pond and contains a variety of former commercial, industrial, and residential structures. In general, Lime Rock is not densely settled, although clusters of homes and other structures occur at intervals along the major roads and in the vicinity of the major industrial areas. A number of cast iron stanchions remain scattered throughout the area, probably of local manufacture. [NR]

Significance of the district:

Architecture, Art, Industry, Philosophy, Politics/ Government- Lime Rock is an industrial community of the 19th and early 20th centuries based on the primary production of pig iron using a blast furnace, and the manufacture of railroad car wheels and other cast-iron products from the remelting of the pig iron. Significant industrial remains are still extant, as well as worker housing, mansions of company owners, and associated stores, offices, and other structures, including a church patronized by the owners, and a social hall. After the close of operations in 1923, the major part of the community was purchased by a New York realtor who developed Lime Rock into an artist's colony in the 1920s and 1930s. The wealth created by the iron industry in Lime Rock is evident in the high architectural quality of the surviving mansions, primarily late-19th century in date, and in the consistently high quality of design accorded to worker's housing, stores, offices, and other structures. Architectural styles range from the colonial through the Greek Revival, French Second empire, and Queen Anne styles, and include a High Victorian Gothic church by the elder Richard Upjohn. The Barnum and Richardson families, proprietors of the blast furnace and foundries from about 1830 to 1920, were important figures in state and local politics. William Henry Barnum was a Democratic Congressman and Senator, and chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Significant figures in the 1920s and 1930s included Count Alfred Korzybski, founder of the Institute of General Semantics, and Dard Hunter, papermaker, and M. Wallach, printmaker. [NR]

District Boundary:

The district includes the northwestern portion of the former industrial village, continuing southward along Salmon Creek to include more properties towards the south, as described in the district ordinance.


Buildings, Open Space, Creek, Others- Blast furnace, Gate House


Residential, Commercial

Architectural Style:

Federal, Italianate, Second Empire, Georgian, Others

18th Century, 19th Century, 20th Century

[1] District information retrieved from the town website
[2] Lime Rock Historic District, Salisbury, Study Report, 1974, SHPO library, Hartford.
[3] Assessors information and Parcel IDs retrieved from the Report of the Historic District Commission, SHPO Library, Hartford.
[NR] Plummer Dale S., Reviewed by John Herzan; Lime Rock Historic District, National Register Nomination Number- 84001064 NRIS, National Park Service, 1984 -;


The local historic district is considerably smaller in area than the National Register District. While it includes many noteworthy structures within the area, most notably the 1864 blast furnace, the 1767 Livingston house, the brick Holley & Coffing office building, and the Leonard Richardson house and portions of the Milo Barnum estate, other notable features of the district are omitted. These include the former weigh station, the worker's and foremen's housing, and the remains of the factory complex downstream from the blast furnace. On Elm Street, the Casino, the Episcopal church, and the homes of the owner's are included in the National Register district, but not in the local historic district.


Map of the historic district retrieved from the report- Proposed Historic Districts in Salisbury and Lakeville, 1969 Report, SHPO Library, Hartford.

View photo

The parcels IDs and street addresses of the designated properties have been obtained by comparison of the district map attached with the study report, the National Register Nomination form, NRIS 84001064, and the list of historic properties in Salisbury provided by the HDC, SHPO library, Hartford. For further information on the district, the user is urged to contact the respective Historic District Commission.

Date of Compilation:
Manjusha Patnaik, CT Trust for Historic Preservation