I'm often asked why I have such a connection to New England. The answer is easy. I have not only lived in New England my whole life, most of my ancestors did too after leaving Europe. Even part of my Canadian family originated from Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard and a few other seaport towns in New England.
I grew up in a home in Massachusetts that was most likely a one room house built in the late 17th century. In the 18th century the home was added onto creating a classic center entrance colonial. My family was the third family to move into the home, so much was left untouched including secret passages and an attic full of furniture and family heirlooms. Our family homestead also included a blacksmith shop, a small saw mill, barn, and several other outbuildings. all of which became my playhouses. Watching my parents restore our home and outbuildings created my love and appreciation for historic homes. Since then I have been on a self-guided journey learning about sea captains who brought tea, silk, china, wallpaper, furniture, and spices to our local seaports and the early laborers and craftsmen who helped families make a house a home. Inspired by those before us who enjoyed the finer things in life, no matter how grand or small, I created New England Fine Living to capture the essence of New England's past, while sharing our quintessential New England style homes and lifestyle known around the world today.
My passion for the area is a little more complex and I will share more in future posts here and on my new blog LindaSmithDavis.com, but my ancestral roots run deep in New England; so much that I truly feel grounded and I can't imagine living anywhere else. Many of my great-great- grandparents were the first or early settlers of Eastern New England including, but not limited to; Nantucket, MA where 5 of my great-great's where part owners such as Tristram Coffin and John Smith, Salem, MA, Marblehead, MA, Martha's Vineyard, and Exeter, NH. Add to my story (pun intended), my fifth great grandfather was a man named Dr. Elisha Story who held a role in the Boston Tea Party (he lead the men dressed as Indians to throw the tea overboard) and was a surgeon alongside then General Washington. I will share more on my ancestors in future blog posts since my husband and I will be visiting family homes.
Speaking of my husband, the same deep-roots to New England holds true for him as well. His family, the Davis' and Haskells, were settlers of Gloucester, MA, New Gloucester, Maine, and Lewiston, MA, and he is also a descendent of the Freeman and Wing family out of Cape Cod, to name a few, make traveling around our six-state region, known as New England, not only educational, but fun. Fun until we found out that we share an 8th great-grandfather and grandmother from Gloucester, MA. Our children / step-children were a bit creeped out, but also thought it was pretty cool. The first bit of this ancestral clue was found in an old book during a weekend stay at The William Haskell House in Gloucester, Massachusetts . If you are interested, you can read more about that by following the highlighted William Haskell House link.
This note was first published in a past issue of New England Fine Living magazine which can be purchased by visiting this link.