Hamden-Browne House

Guess what, y’all? My old petsitter (and one of my mom’s besties) in Massachusetts lives on a historic lot in Reading, Mass., so this is a post with both history and love. We miss and love you, Brianne. ❤️

Built in 1831 in Reading, Mass., Sylvester Hamden was the original owner of this property, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. Hamden was a leading cabinet/furniture maker and mill owner who shipped goods all over the United States. His house was across the street from his factory.

His financial success enabled him to built a mansion elsewhere in town in 1856, so he was still close to work but night right up in the business anymore.

Hamden died in 1873, and Edwin Manning took over the business, but a fire destroyed the mill yard in 1884. Manning added the front bay windows here in 1891 and moved the house off site seven years later.

Thomas Browne, who came to Reading from Ireland in 1905, owned this house by 1928. He began his career here working for Eastern Massachusetts Railroad Company, which operated trolley cars on the major streets in town from 1894-1932. But when he bought the house he was a letter carrier.

Apparently, the house was either a boarding house or apartment house at that time, as Browne and his wife shared the space with a mechanic, telephone operator and carpenter.

Brianne’s house (main photo) used to be a barn, and was converted into a residence, but we couldn’t find any info that said when that happened.

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