Property Overview Inventory List District Map

Benedict House and Shop

LHD boundaries as described are approximate and subject to change. Consult the LHD Study Report on file with the relevant local district commission or municipal authority to verify district boundaries and whether a specific property, particularly one in proximity of a boundary line, is within the district. Also note that LHD boundaries may differ from those of State or National Register Districts.

Year of Establishment:
Property Authority:
Historic District Commission
Link to Commission or Municipal Website:
Buildings, Open space
Architectural Style:
Colonial/ Post-medieval English or expanded cape
Mid- 18th Century

The Benedict House has a three-bay facade and an off-center rubble stone chimney stack, capped with brick above the ridge. A hipped-roof porch supported by square posts extends across the facade to the one-story, gable-roofed shop on the west side. The shop door to the lower level is located in its facade foundation. According to local sources, all the rubble stone masonry was dry laid, but it is likely that at least clay mortar was used for the chimney. Today the stonework is mortared, except for the base of the chimney. Historically, the facade clapboards were painted white, the rest of the walls were red. The roof, presently asphalt shingled, was once wood shingled on the front slope and covered with tin at the rear. The present house incorporates additions and alterations made by architect Cass Gilbert in the 1920's and the family of the present owner after 1931. [2]

Architecture, Social History, Industry: The Benedict House and Shop , two of the oldest surviving colonial buildings in Ridgefield, have considerable local significance. In addition to their historical association with the Benedict family and the later early industrial history of Ridgefield, these buildings are a well-preserved illustration of the life ways of a colonial artisan. The buildings are exceptional and rare examples of vernacular colonial architecture, enhanced by the integrity of their unusual terraced setting. Considerable ingenuity was needed to develop this difficult site and still orient the house for solar gain in winter. The survival of the house and shop in this century is largely due to generally sympathetic restoration and remodeling, first by architect Cass Gilbert and then the Wohlforth family. [2]

[1] District information retrieved from the town website
[2] Benedict House and Shop, Ridgefield, Wohlforth Eric, Historic Resources Inventory, Building and Structures, 2000, SHPO library, Hartford.
[3] Assessors information retrieved from the town website [].
[NR] Cunningham Jan, Benedict House and Shop, National Register Nomination Number- 98001440 NRIS, National Park Service, 1998.

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