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 ABOVE The Taylor-Barry House, Kennebunk, Maine, 1804-05, based on the design of housewright Thomas Eaton. The property will now be protected through preservation restrictions administered by SPNEA's Stewardship Program.
SPNEA's restrictions also protect many interior finishes, including wall stenciling in the entry stairhall attributed to itinerant artisan Moses Eaton, Jr. (b.1796), who traveled across New England and decorated scores of homes along the way.


In 1936, Kennebunk, Maine, summer resident Edith Cleaves Barry established a museum to honor the rich history of the Kennebunks. Barry, whose family had long owned a house on fashionable Summer Street, founded the Brick Store Museum in a commercial building in the center of town. Since that time, the museum has successfully interpreted the history of the region.

By 1971, the family had given the Barry Summer Street property, locally known as the Taylor-Barry House, to the Brick Store Museum. For the next thirty years, the museum sought to preserve the property as a historic house museum. By the mid 1990s, however, the Brick Store Museum concluded that it could no longer operate the property in this manner and began investigating alternative methods of meeting its donors' wish to preserve it. After careful study and analysis, the museum decided to protect the property's architectural and landscape features through SPNEA's Stewardship Program. Together, the Brick Store Museum and SPNEA Stewardship staff developed a set of preservation restrictions that will preserve the exterior architecture of the house, original rear ell, barn, and landscape, as well as numerous original interior features, such as lime-sand plaster walls and ceilings, hand-carved mantels and other woodwork, hand-planed softwood floorboards, and post-and-beam structural framing members.

Image02With the future of the house and its surrounding landscape secured through restrictions, the Brick Store Museum sold the property into private ownership, to a young family who are enthusiastically settling into their new historic home. The preservation partnership between the Brick Store Museum and SPNEA illustrates how the modern method of preserving historic New England's buildings through preservation restrictions can result in a successful alternative to the more traditional approach to preserving historic properties through direct, non-profit museum ownership.

-Shantia Anderheggen
Director of Stewardship


From the Executive Editor
Time flies by so quickly. It's hard to believe that with this issue, we are completing the third year of publishing Historic New England. If you're a long-time member of SPNEA, you've traveled with us through the transformation of our member publication from the two-color newsletter of the early 1990s, to the glossier full-color newsletter of the late '90s, to the publication that you're reading today.

I want to thank you, our members and readers, for the continued feedback you provide. Since introducing Historic New England magazine in the summer of 2000, we've heard from many of you about how much you enjoy the content, the photos and design, and the opportunity to hear from many different writers, both SPNEA staff and guest authors.

Often, you've said that it would be great to expand Historic New England even more. And we've listened. This is our second twenty-four-page issue. The increase in pages allows us to offer longer, more in-depth feature articles while still including the regular sections you've told us you enjoy.

Listening to you helps us keep Historic New England fresh, informative and entertaining. Please keep letting us know what you think by writing to Historic New England, c/o SPNEA, 141 Cambridge Street, Boston, MA 02114, calling (617) 227-3957 ext. 240, or emailing to And, as always, please pass along the magazine to others who share your interest in the region's rich history, and encourage them to consider membership in SPNEA. Together we ensure the future of New England's past.

-Diane Viera
Vice President for External Affairs

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