Sarah Orne Jewett House
Writer Sarah Orne Jewett (1849-1909) was born in her grandparents' eighteenth-century house, where she lived with her family until 1854, when a Greek Revival House was built next door. As Sarah gained attention as an author, she and her family continued to live in the two Portland Street homes in the center of South Berwick.
Jewett and her older sister Mary inherited their grandparents' house in 1887. Decorating the house for their own use, the sisters expressed both a pride in their family's past and their own independent, sophisticated tastes. The result is an eclectic blend of eighteenth-century architecture, antiques, and old wallpapers with furnishings showing the influence of the Arts and Crafts movement.
Jewett drew on the house for inspiration for her novel Deephaven and often wrote at the desk in the upper hall overlooking the active town center.
Friday – Sunday, June 1 – October 15
11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Tours on the hour. Last tour at 4:00 p.m.
The Sarah Orne Jewett House is a Historic New England property.
Top photo: Jewett House - Sarah’s sister Mary continued to live in the house, with frequent visits from nephew Theodore Jewett Eastman. Mary died in 1930, leaving the old family home to Eastman who, just one year later, bequeathed it to the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, now Historic New England.
Bottom photo: Parlor - The parlor is the best room in the house, as evidenced by its fine woodwork. This room reflects the Jewett sisters' passion for the lives of their ancestors and for preservation of the past. The wallpaper in the parlor is preserved from their grandfather's occupation of the house and the furniture is a mix of styles from many generations – many of them antiques even when Sarah and Mary lived in the house.