Rock Ledge Cottage // 1887

One of the jewels of the Cape Arundel summer cottages in Kennebunkport is the Rock Ledge Cottage, sited prominently on a hill overlooking the Atlantic. Rock Ledge was a cottage built in 1887 for Elon Dunbar Lockwood (1836-1891) of Philadelphia. Lockwood was a merchant who started a dry goods business with his brother, forming W. E. & E. W. Lockwood. Elon became a highly respected businessman in Philadelphia and later became a member of the Committee of Fifty, a group formed to devise measures for the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia which would showcase the city for the first ever World’s Exposition in the United States. Elon’s wife Elizabeth died in 1884, and a couple years later, he had this summer cottage built, where he would apparently entertain, giving him the designation as a womanizer until his death in 1891 at the age of 54. The cottage was designed by William Ralph Emerson, one of the busiest architects in New England at the time, with commissions all over the region, including many summer cottages in Maine.