The summer in the Upper Valley is my favorite. Everything verdant. Yards mowed and bursting with color. Rivers and creeks flowing. This weekend the Norwich Historical Society will host its 5th Annual House & Garden Tour on Saturday, June 28, from 10 am – 4 pm and it is well worth a look. You can take your time browsing through gardens and being thankful that you aren't yanking weeds in your garden this weekend!
A catered lunch by Bakewell is available ( $12.00) so you can enjoy the tour without getting hangry.
To give you a sneak peek of what' s out there, take a look at the list below and plan your weekend accordingly:
Karen and Jeffrey Lubell
• modern house designed in 1972–73 by architect
Allan Gelbin (1929–1994) for his own
residence and studio.
• Gelbin, a disciple of Frank Lloyd
Wright, designed the Gardner home,
107 Spring Pond, in 1965 and
supervised its construction.
• Much thought was given to exact placement
of house, to reflect White Mountains
panorama and winter sunrises; tree‑house
feel in summer when leaves are out.
2002 the kitchen was renovated, and
the master bedroom on the main floor
and garage were added. The addition was designed by the architect-son of the
2002 owners, who did an excellent job staying true to Gelbin’s design while adding space.
• The house was featured in a NY Times
Great Homes and Destinations column
and built by G.R. Porter & Sons.
• View the Gelbin-designed Japanese rock
garden from the living room deck. 2
Elizabeth Perry and Jeff Reed
• A Norwich landmark since c. 1895, the
Cossingham Farm was one of two farms
that together held over 600 acres on what
is now Bragg Hill.
• 1998, Beth Perry became first
non‑Cossingham to own the property.
• The agreement to sell was reached with
a handshake between Beth and Bob
• Richard Cossingham moved the barn
from the current site of Baker Library,
Dartmouth College to the property by ox
cart in 1929. It was used as a dairy barn
• Barn restoration is ongoing with a new
foundation and new siding.
• 2004, Peter French Fine Woodworking
& Design, Norwich added the addition
to the original farmhouse.
• Landscape design and installation in
2004 by Shepard Butler Landscape
Architects, Thetford Center.
• Design Source+Home, Beth’s home
furnishings shop, 8 Carpenter Street,
649.7082 in downtown Norwich will
host a special ‘garden event’ on June 28,
generously donating 25% of all sales that
day to the Historical Society. 3
Bill Noble and Jim Tatum
• Bill Noble’s garden surrounds an 1830s
Early Greek Revival-style house and
hillside farm with barn, stone walls,
fields, and views of neighboring fields
and distant mountains.
• The farm was purchased by Bill Noble and JimTatum in 1991 from the estate of Betty McKenzie.
• The garden features perennial borders,
a vegetable garden and fruit trees, rock
gardens, mixed borders and meadows.
• Plant collections include willows,
rhubarbs, grasses and sedges, and
Himalayan plants such as blue poppies
and primulas. Native shrubs, perennials
and meadows provide habitat for birds
• The garden is an ongoing experiment
with plants and ideas gathered from
working with and visiting other
gardens and specialty nurseries
throughout the country. For twentyfive
years Bill has worked as a garden
designer and professional in garden
preservation. As Director of Preservation
for the Garden Conservancy, he
was instrumental in the preservation
and restoration of dozens of gardens
throughout the United States.
• As a garden designer, Noble helps clients
create beautiful new gardens or refine
• His work has been featured in Martha
Stewart Living, House & Garden, and The
New York Times, and he is a contributing
editor to Organic Gardening. He lectures
on topics ranging from garden history
and design to garden preservation.
• For more info: billnoblegardens.com
Deb and Jay Van Arman
Meeting House Farm
• First farmed in the 1780s, it is Norwich’s
oldest continuously operating farm.
• Named for the massive timbers in the
west end of the barn, repurposed in 1817
from Norwich’s original meeting house,
which was built up the hill at the Olcott
Road intersection in 1785.
• Large Georgian farm house built c. 1788
by Constant Murdock (son of Thomas
and brother of Jasper Murdock) is “the
only example in Norwich of the fully
developed Georgian style.”
• Purchased by Charles and Lucy Pierce in
1914, the farm is celebrating 100 years in
the Pierce/Van Arman family.
• Through the front “casket” door
find extensive paneling and beautiful
• Colorful, lively Rufus Porter style
over-mantle murals in the upstairs west
bedrooms were painted around 1820.
• “Warm” garden on south side of house,
with flowers, berries, and heat-loving
vegetables, includes Lucy Pierce’s original
• Herb garden on north side, on site of old
• Also on the north side are raised beds
and “cool” garden for lettuces, peas,
• Gardens installed and maintained by
Deb Van Arman and completely organic
Dottie and George Dorion
• A 3- level cedar and stone home
designed by Architect Robert Huit
Hunter, Thetford Center, in the style
of Frank Lloyd Wright, and built by
Trumbull Nelson in 1989.
• Concentric windows at the entrance and
living room used by Rob Hunter as his
• Spectacular views to Mt Moosilauke,
Mt Cube and the Presidential Range.
• Steuben glass collection and art work
collected from around the world,
including the art of Dottie Dorion.
• The gardens around the house were
designed by the homeowners and are
maintained by Katy Botsford.
• “Sun Catcher”, a bronze abstract
sculpture on a hand-cut limestone
pedestal by Mike Makalski graces the
garden entrance area.
• A working art studio for Dottie Dorion,
it is also used for entertaining and can
accommodate overnight guests.
• Designed by Smith & Vansant to
compliment the style of the house.
Notice the repeat of concentric square
windows and the doors of the studio
match the doors of the home.
• O’Hara & Gerke, Wilder, contractors;
Chase & Sons Landscaping, Hartland,
• Artfab in Thetford Center made the
exterior railing designed to cause
minimal disruption to the views.
• The new sculpture near the Studio is by
Jacksonville, FL artist Dolf James.
Tickets are $25 and NHS members $20, are available at the Society or on-line at www.norwichhistory.org. Raffle includes a Garden Way cart (filled with gardening goodies), a $100 gift certificate from Norwich’s Carpenter & Main Restaurant, and Main Street Kitchen’s stainless steel composting bucket. Proceeds benefit the Society’s ngoing restoration projects. Rain or shine! For more information, please call: 802-649-0124 or email: email@example.com
Thanks, Nancy Hoggson, for the list of houses!