370 Main Street, New London NH


Current Use

  • Country Houses

Formerly

  • 1977 - 2000 - Church's Children's Clothes
  • 1947 - owned by Colby Junior College after Shepard auction
  • 1906-1911 - law and insurance offices of Nathan Colby in front of building; tenements continue
  • 1894 - carriage shop remodeled into two tenements
  • 1890 - Auction of Sargent homestead land to Charles E. Shepard; 1891 carriage house built over old house foundation
  • 1884 - house burned to the ground.
  • c. 1854-1884 - Home of Charles Seamans Sargent and wife;

Building History


August 12, 1853 - Ezekiel and Emily Sargent sell one acre of land to Charles S. Sargent for $200 (Merrimack Co. deeds, V. 117; p. 492; not recorded until Jan. 6, 1854).

c. 1854 - Home of Charles Seamans Sargent (1817 -1890); He married Judith Severance; they had no children. The house burned to the ground in 1884. (Lord, pp. 378-380).

June 24, 1890 - Deed of "Homestead of the late Charles S. Sargent, by auction, to Charles E. Shepard (Daniel Colby, Executor of will of Sargent), Merrimack C. deeds, V. 354, p. 168)

1891 - A.H. Whipple and Co., with Charles E. Shepard, rebuilt the structure. Amos Whipple in 1882 bought out the New London and Potter Place stage line, establishing a stable in the rear of his father's house, next door to this site. There was a livery stable at each end of the stage line - Potter Place and at the Whipple Homestead. In 1888 Charles E. Shepard became partners with Amos (who was a first cousin of his wife). In addition to regular service between Potter Place and New London, they carried on service to Bradford, with "about 40 horses with coaches, excursion carriages and single teams of all kinds;" (Summer Rest, August, 1888, p. 10). Summer Rest for August, 1891, notes that Charles E. Shepard had made the Sargent store into his residence, "and on the old cellar adjacent, over which the house of Mr. Sargent was burned a few years ago, has been covered with a nice new carriage house, which can at any time be finished into a dwelling house. This is occupied by Whipple and Sargent for the surplusage of livery carriages," That year, the stable had been increased to house 52 horses. By 1893, Amos had gone to Boston where he was to manage a number of hotels. For several years Shepard carried on the stable and stage business with his brother, Frank, while continuing to use the stable behind the Whipple Homestead. The brothers also had a lumber business. The town fire equipment and hearse were also housed at Shepards', where horse and/or water power were available. In 1894 the carriage house on this property was built over into a two tenement house. Among the early tenants were Will Leonard and his family and Frank Pressey (who drove to daily stage to Bradford). Later Allen O. Crane, another Shepard employee, lived in the tenement where the Leonards had been.

In 1898 Will Leonard acquired a half-interest in the Potter Place - New London line (while also running the drug store), and Frank Shepard appears to have dropped out of the business. Charles Shepard and Leonard also added a blacksmith shop (on Seaman's Road) to the enterprise. In 1900 Arthur Gould, Shepard's brother-in-law, bought out Leonard's half of the business, and became one of the main stage drivers. In this year, the partners moved the frame of a building which had been the axe factory at the scythe factory to the rear of this site to house the expanding livery and stable business. At the peak of their business, the partners could put 30 carriages on the road at once and had over 100 horses. These horse teams, plus a mule team, carried milk daily from local farms to Potter Place, where they were carried by train to H.P. Hood in Boston. By this time, there were three locations for the stable and livery businesses - in New London, Potter Place, and SooNipi Park on Lake Sunapee. (They eventually had another stable at Granliden on Lake Sunapee). Although Gould got out of the partnership in 1906, he continued to drive one of the stages until 1914.

In 1906 Shepard continued the business by himself. From 1906 to 1912, Nathaniel Colby had his law and insurance office in this building, in the front on the right. Beginning in 1911, Shepard began shifting his livery business to automobiles, purchasing several large touring cars. From 1915-1925, Fred and Mary Pedrick and Charlie and "Fan" Adams were tenants in this building, both men being Shepard employees.

Following World War I, James Eli Shepard II joined his father in his many expanding businesses, (These included fuel and ice businesses, a private water company, and an acetylene gas company). In 1924, they established a riding school, where two other Shepard children, Maurice and Evelyn, taught horsemanship.

In 1941 the stable and teaming business was sold, and in 1945 the other businesses were dissolved. In 1947 the stable with 3 acres was sold to Colby Junior College, while the Shepards kept the house and post office next door.

This building was sold (by the college?) to Daniel White in 1977, who started Church's Children's Clothes with his wife, Cindy, soon after.

In March 2013, the old Shepard Barn at the rear of the property was demolished.

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