The Jesse Lamprey House

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Old Home Day

1638 - Town of Hampton - 1961

Jesse Lamprey House

272 Winnacunnet Road

Built about 1829 by Captain Jesse Lamprey on his grandfather's home lot, this house is architecturally a fine example of those built at the time. As happened so frequently among families living close to the sea in New England, Captain Lamprey's only son, Albert, was reportedly drowned off the coast of Oregon on June 6, 1854. Hence the property was inherited by a daughter, Mary Frances, who married James M. Brown. Since Mrs. Brown was an invalid confined to a wheelchair, a side porch was added to the house for her convenience.

The doors of the rooms inside the house are of an unusual design, one not commonly found in New England farm houses. These doors include four panels within each of which is a design. This makes them quite different from the Christian door used in so many houses of this type and period. The mark on the lower panels of doors was sometimes incorporated by joiners in Colonial times. Door so designed were referred to as "Devil's doors" because they were supposed to ward off the influence of Satan from the dwellers in the house. It is possible that Captain Lamprey had this in mind when the house was built way back in the 1820's. After all, everything Colonial did not automatically disappear with the end of the so-called Colonial period.

In the living room, which was originally the kitchen, in the north-east corner of the house is a fine old brick fireplace such as was found so necessary for heating and cooking in houses of this vintage.

The house was restored before the present (1961) owners, Mr. and Mrs. Franklin O. Brittan, purchased it.

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