The Old Parsonage in Newington, NH, is a rare survivor from the 1700s in the tiny town. It is one of few extant “saltbox” houses to be found in the New Hampshire seacoast. Like most houses of this type, the parsonage has a lean-to that was added a few years after the house was built. Like the nearby meeting house, the parsonage has long been inextricably connected to the public life and the identity of Newington. Unlike the much-altered meeting house, the parsonage retains the appearance of the 1700s and has been extremely well-preserved, giving a glimpse into 18th century life in Newington. The parsonage is estimated to have been constructed in 1725 when Richard Pomeroy, the first Sexton of the church, sold the property here for 19 pounds, with no mention of a dwelling. It was acquired by a John Knight (1685-1765). After his death, the dwelling was sold to the Town of Newington and restored to be used as a parsonage.
This saltbox house was built by 1750 for David Ogden at the time of his marriage to Jane Sturges. For the next 125 years it was home for the Ogden family in the farming and coastal shipping town of Fairfield. The home was sold out of the family in 1839 to Henry W. Banks, who continued to farm on the nearly 75 acres of farmland. By the 1920s, the home was suffering from deferred maintenance and was at risk of demolition. Luckily, Annie Burr Jennings (1855-1939), a philanthropist who was born into a wealthy family, sought to give back to her town. Jennings was instrumental in establishing and supporting a number of important community institutions, including the Fairfield Historical Society (now the Fairfield Museum) and the Fairfield Public Library. In 1931, she purchased the old Ogden Farmhouse from absentee owners and helped fund its restoration. The early saltbox vernacular Georgian home today is maintained by the Fairfield Museum and the Greenfield Hill Village Improvement Society.