After posting the story below, Rob Haroun — president of SIR Development — posted the following comment:
The houses are not slated for demolition within the next few days. SIR Development is presently working on a Text Amendment, #711, to save historic houses throughout the town including this house at SIR’s sole expense. It is unfortunate that the author of the article did not check in with SIR or the Town before posting.
This past Saturday for health and safety reasons, the 1950’s asbestos siding was removed, with all proper procedures and authorizations so that the existing clapboard siding, shown in the picture, can be showcased to the public as to what the building actually looked like. SIR took the same action when it renovated 15 Powers Court to showcase the authentic clapboard siding which was noted when SIR received the HDC preservation award a few years back.
SIR Development is proud to continue working on preserving historic structures throughout the town including 90 Post Road East, The Old Town Hall.
The story has been amended to reflect the erroneous information provided earlier to me.
Late last year, I posted a story about the impending demolition of 3 houses on Center Street.
Two dated from the 1700s, though tax records are sketchy. One is a 1938 vernacular.
Their time has come. Demolition is slated within the next few days. Before they go, alert “06880” reader Nancy Avery Baloglu — whose grandfather, Howard Avery, turned a barn into one of those homes nearly 80 years ago — wants to give them their due.
(She notes, realistically, “it is time for the tired houses to be retired.”)
The homes stand on what was once a 30-acre tract owned by the Samuel Mills family, circa 1770. The land was sold in 1840 to Walter Sherwood, then came later to the Avery and Mills families. All are important Westport names.
Some of the folks associated with the property include Mary Boyle, who weeded onion fields in Green’s Farms with F.T. Bedford, before he made his fortune in oil; George and Howard Avery, who worked for the Bedford family as a chauffeur and horseman, respectively, and Joe Avery, longtime huntsman and dressage instructor at Fairfield County Hunt Club.
The Center Street homes will soon be “retired” (to use Nancy’s gentle term). We thank her for this final look back.