The Ruggles House, designed by housewright Aaron S. Sherman of Marshfield, Massachusetts, was built 1818-1820 for Judge Thomas Ruggles, a wealthy lumber dealer, postmaster, captain of the local militia and Justice of the Court of Sessions for Washington County. This particularly lovely example of Adamesque style Federal period architecture is remarkable for its location as well as its survival.
The house is renowned for its flying staircase, which comprises almost a third of the house. Intricate woodwork, crafted by Massachusetts carver, Alvah Peterson, is especially abundant in the west parlor.
The Ruggles House was lived in for 100 years, until 1920, by three generations of the Ruggles family. By then the house was in quite a state of disrepair. Through the diligence of Ruggles descendent, Mary Ruggles Chandler, restoration efforts began in the 1920’s and were completed in 1951 when the house first opened for tours. The house museum is supported and maintained by the Ruggles House Society, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, through voluntary contributions.
Many of the furnishings in the house are original Ruggles pieces, some that never left the house and many that have returned over the years. All other furnishings are period to when the Ruggles family was in residence.
Museums & Historical Sites
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