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Samuel Church–Dr. Hathaway House

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c. 1815 and later, c. 1905. 4 Westport Harbor Rd.
  • Samuel Church–Dr. Hathaway House

The shingled Church House is the most interesting in Adamsville. Of extraordinary scale for the early nineteenth century, it is virtually a square with paired interior chimneys. More extraordinary are two identical five-bay entrance elevations on its north and east sides, with duplicate fanlighted entrances at the center of each. The north front, toward Adamsville Road, is now the principal entrance. At right angles to this, the east front, originally intended as the principal entrance with flanking parlors on either side, now faces an abandoned road. The present entrance opens into a vestibule between one of the parlors and the keeping room (kitchen). Barns were added in the nineteenth century.

Dr. Hathaway built a water tower at the rear of the property on Westport Harbor Road when he owned the house in the early twentieth century. It once housed a pump on the first floor and chauffeur's quarters above, with the tank on top. It is a beautifully proportioned example of Neo-Colonial design applied to an eccentric building, which again seems to invoke Little Compton's onetime windmills.

Writing Credits

William H. Jordy et al.


What's Nearby


William H. Jordy et al., "Samuel Church–Dr. Hathaway House", [Little Compton, Rhode Island], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Rhode Island, William H. Jordy, with Ronald J. Onorato and William McKenzie Woodward. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004, 496-497.

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