Marion (Old Rochester) is one of the oldest towns in the United States, and the Sippican Historical Society maintains an extensive collection of documentation on its historic buildings. In 1998, the Sippican Historical Society commissioned an architectural survey of Marion’s historic homes and buildings. Over 100 were cataloged and photographed. SHS will feature one building a week so that the residents of Marion can understand more about its unique historical architecture.
The “Old Parsonage” at 113 Front Street was built in 1813 by Captain John Pitcher, brother of Elizabeth Pitcher Taber. The side of the building that faces Front Street is actually the back of the original dwelling, which until recently served as St. Rita Church’s rectory. Across the street from Capt. Pitcher’s home was a large pasture where his sheep and cows grazed. He used to hang a ship’s bell from the branch of an oak tree and ring it every evening at 9:00 pm as a curfew bell. The bell is now located in the Marion Natural History Museum. When Capt. Pitcher died, he left his house to the Congregational Church, which used it as a parsonage for many years.