Massachusetts Historical Commission - 2006 Preservation Award Winners
Hancock-Clarke House • Lexington
 
Hancock-Clarke House - Lexington

Rehabilitation & Restoration

The Hancock-Clarke House is a significant landmark associated with the beginning of the American Revolution. Home to the grandfather of John Hancock, it was at this house that Hancock and Samuel Adams sought refuge on the evening of April 18th, 1775, and their presence here made the house the Lexington destination of Paul Revere’s ride later that same night. The Lexington Historical Society has been associated with the house since 1896, when the Society purchased and relocated it to save it from destruction. The Society restored the building and opened it to the public as a museum in 1897. Since that time more than one million visitors have toured the house. In the 1960s, the original site of the house was donated to the Society, and in 1974, the house was moved back to its original location.

In addition to its connections to historical events, the house also possesses great architectural significance. With little changed from its original construction, the 1737 portion of the house remains an important example of early Georgian architecture in New England. The recent rehabilitation project addressed structural weaknesses, installed period-appropriate roofing, repaired and, in some cases, replaced exterior sheathing, and repainted the house to its earliest known color. The house was also made fully accessible. The careful rehabilitation and restoration of the Hancock-Clarke House signifies the continued dedication of the Lexington Historical Society to preserve this important building.

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