The Storrs Homestead

Lost Mansfield > The Storrs Homestead


Mansfield’s master architect-builder, Edwin Fitch, built this house for Royal Storrs in 1849.  It was the boyhood home of Charles and Augustus Storrs, the later founders of the Storrs Agricultural School, now the University of Connecticut.  The main house is a Federal style colonial to which Greek revival elements were added, including pedimented gables and corner pilasters.  There are also porticos supported by Doric columns at both the front and side entrances.  The two-story ell was probably a later addition. The house, now gone, stood near the intersection of Route 195 and Gurleyville Road.  Its gable end faced onto Gurleyville Road.

Storrs Family Homestead
The Storrs Family Homestead. The main house was built in 1849 for the family of Royal Storrs. The two-story ell is a later addition. In 1875, Augustus Storrs purchased the family farm from his older brother, Royal Otis, who had inherited it upon their father’s death. He developed it into a model farm.

In 1875, Augustus Storrs purchased the Storrs family farm from his older brother, Royal Otis Storrs.  Augustus had a deep interest in agriculture and over the following years, he developed the farm as an example of husbandry at its best.  In 1881, he gifted a portion of his farmlands and the former Connecticut Soldiers’ Orphans’ Home property to the State of Connecticut to establish the Storrs Agricultural School.

Valentine House
A postcard of the Valentine House. Marie Antoinette Storrs and her husband, Benjamin Eyre Valentine inherited the Augustus Storrs property in 1892 and they resided there until 1907. Sometime in the late 19th century, the Greek revival porticos were removed from the house and the wrap-around porch was added.

The house later passed to his younger daughter, Marie Antoinette, who had married Benjamin Eyre Valentine on November 6, 1872.  The Valentines resided there until 1907 when the property was leased and later purchased by the college.  Over the following years the Valentine house served at various times as faculty housing, a woman’s dormitory and a practice house for domestic science students.  It was torn down in 1939 when the Edwina Whitney residence hall was constructed. 

Edwina Whitney Hall
Edwina Whitney Hall, constructed in 1939. The Valentine house stood by this site and was razed when the residence hall was constructed.

This series is made possible by a Capacity Building Grant from The Last Green Valley, Inc.

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Storrs Connecticut