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Clemence-Irons House

Johnston, Rhode Island


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Built by Richard Clemence in 1691, Clemence-Irons House is a rare surviving example of a "stone-ender," a once common building type with roots in the western part of England.  Passing through a series of owners in the eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth centuries, the house had grown to thirteen rooms by 1938, when it was purchased by Henry Sharpe and his sisters, Ellen Sharpe and Louisa Sharpe Metcalf.

The Sharpe family valued the great age of the house and recognized its stone-ender characteristics, and commissioned Norman Isham, who had directed restoration efforts at nearby Arnold House in 1920, to investigate the structure and restore the house to its seventeenth-century appearance. Using a combination of salvaged and new materials to recreate the original appearance of the house, Isham also commissioned furnishings made from old wood to complement the architectural reconstruction. 

Significant as one of the oldest houses in Rhode Island, Clemence-Irons House is also important as a record of twentieth-century restoration ideas and methods. The house was donated to Historic New England in 1947.

Please visit nearby Arnold House.

Visit Clemence-Irons House


2014 Schedule
Second Saturdays, June 1-October 15
Saturday, June 7, free admission
11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Tours on the hour. Last tour at 4:00 p.m.

$5 adults
$4 seniors
$2.50 students
Free for Historic New England members and Johnston residents. Become a member.

Location and directions
Clemence-Irons House
38 George Waterman Road
Johnston, R.I. 02919

Map and directions

Directions detail: From Route 295, exit at US-44 East/Putnam Pike via exit 7A toward North Providence. Turn right onto George Waterman Rd/RI-128. The house is on the right.

Parking: There is street parking on George Waterman Road.

Contact Clemence-Irons House

Telephone:  401-728-9696
Contact the Clemence-Irons House by e-mail.

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Clemence-Irons House