Address
160 Metcalf Road
Tolland, CT 06084
Hours
Seasonal
For Information about hours of operation, call Gail White, Director (860) 974-1875
Staff
Gail White, Museum Director

Description

The first Daniel Benton built this house in 1720; The oldest house remaining in Tolland, it was occupied by members of his family until 1932. It is the oldest house museum open to the public in Tolland County.

Six generations of the Benton family lived here and farmed the land. Purchased in 1932 by Florrie Bishop Bowering, a radio personality and dietician at the University of Connecticut, it was occupied by her until her death in 1968. It came into the possession of the Tolland Historical Society through the generosity of the next owners, Charles B. Goodstein and William A Shocket, in 1969, and the house was opened as a museum the following year.

The hall, which reflects the earliest construction, boasts a beautifully paneled fireplace wall, stained and grained to simulate walnut, as is the wide-board feather-edged sheathing on the other three walls. Paneling in the parlor has been repainted in the original light Prussian blue. Repairs to both chimneys have returned the five fireplaces to useable condition, The extensive repairs to the center chimney also exposed the original walk-in fireplace with bake oven in the kitchen, which has been restored. The cellar, which has another large cooking fireplace, was used to house Hessian and English for eighteen months during the Revolutionary War.

Daniel Benton's sons fought in the French and indian War; his grandsons fought in the Revolutionary War. The Daniel Benton Homestead tells the story of 18th century Tolland through the lives of the first three generations of Bentons to live in it.