Maxwell House // 1743

The Maxwell House was built between in 1743 by the Reverend Samuel Maxwell. The house, which is the oldest brick dwelling in Warren, is distinguished by the distinctive Flemish bond pattern of the brickwork, its field stone foundation, and its large central chimney. Maxwell was born in Boston and was ordained a Baptist minister in 1732 and settled in Newport. He later moved to Warren and had this house built at the corner of Church and Water Streets. His eldest son, James, appears to have been willed the home after Rev. Maxwell’s death. James Maxwell was a sea captain and slave trader in the Triangle Trade and reputed to be one of the wealthiest men in Warren (he later built homes as wedding gifts to his daughters). James Maxwell likely gained much of his wealth by participating in the sale of slaves including some who had been listed as being aboard his own schooler Abigail, where in 1790, the Captain Charles Collins, purchased 64 slaves on the coast of Africa and brought 53 back alive. The Maxwell House is owned by The Massasoit Historical Association and is maintained as a working museum.