Clark Farm Tenant House
Archaeological Site

East Granby, Connecticut

Description of Site

(See also Site Plan and Photographs)

Image of foundation The location of the Clark Farm Tenant House Site is marked by a stone foundation that partly protrudes above grade and begins approximately 6.5 feet north of the present paved roadway. The foundation walls are constructed of fieldstone and schist rubble, with cut slabs of the local brown sandstone forming the upper courses. The foundation measures 18 feet by 29.5 feet overall, with a stone wall dividing it into two unequal parts. The western portion, measuring 12 feet by 18 feet in plan, contains a dug cellar approximately 4 feet deep. Because the walls average 30 inches in thickness, the interior dimensions of the cellar are approximately 8 by 13 feet. The foundation extends easterly 17.5 feet to include what appears to have been a shallow crawl space; this portion includes sandstone steps adjoining the south wall, leading down to the road. As part of the recent highway project, following archaeological testing, the foundation was filled with pea gravel to stabilize it.

In addition to the house foundation, the 1937 state highway project map depicts three features that no longer are represented by visible remains: a small ell on the east side of the house, a well in the east side yard, and a privy near the northeast corner of the house. The ell, which appears lower in height than the main part of the house in the 1934 aerial photograph, may have had a timber foundation of posts or shallow-laid sleepers or perhaps no foundation at all. The well was probably filled in after the state acquired this part of the property in 1957. None of these three features was specifically addressed in the limited archaeological investigations that have occurred to date.

The foundation is surrounded on three sides by an upward slope of approximately 10-15 degrees. The land on the sides and at the rear of the house appears as relatively flat, wet meadow. Much of the immediately surrounding land was plowed for cultivation at the time of the 1934 aerial survey, and even more was drained for farmland at the time of the 1951 survey. Today the area seems to have returned to its former wet state, and it is mostly overgrown with brambles and brush.

Local informants recall the property, described as poorly built with an exterior of rough boards, burning in the 1940s. From its foundation outline, and the shadow cast in the 1934 aerial photograph, it can be plausibly reconstructed as a small gable-roofed dwelling, one or one-and-a-half stories high, with the ridge of its roof set parallel to the road.

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