Sippican Historical Society

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 Congregational chapel at 37 Main Street is a fine example of a shingle-style ecclesiastical building. It was designed by William Gibbons Preston, a noted Boston architect who summered in Marion and designed many buildings here. The chapel was built in 1885 with funds donated by Elizabeth Pitcher Taber, Marion’s renowned benefactor. She purchased the plot from Clark P. Howland, then principal of Tabor Academy, at a cost of $300, with $5,000 allotted for construction of the building. The structure was used for church events and Sunday School classes. The original windows featured bullseye glass, later removed out of fear that the glass “lens” might concentrate sunlight and start a fire. Today, the Penny Pinchers’ Exchange thrift store rents the building, operating the shop for the financial benefit of the Congregational Church and other charities.

Leave A Comment...