Sterling Hill Historic District

View of Sterling Hill from Route 14A, view southwest; Source- NRIS 86000152
Historic/Common Name:
Sterling Hill National Register Historic District
Town:
Sterling »
Year of Establishment:
1991
Historic Designation:
LHD, NRHD, SR
District Authority:
Historic District Commission
Nature of Authority:
Regulatory
District Character:
Rural neighborhood
Eligible for Historic Home tax credits:
Yes
General description:

The Sterling Hill Historic District is a group of 14 houses with related outbuildings and one church perched upon a broad ridge at the western edge of the Town of Sterling, bordering the town line of Plainfield. To the west the land slopes sharply downward toward the Ekonk section of Plainfield, while to the east the land drops off more gently. The principal road in the Sterling Hill Historic District is the east-west State Route 14A, known also as Plainfield Pike, with Green Lane running northward at the summit of the hill near the district's focal point, the Greek Revival style Sterling Hill Baptist Church. [NR]

Significance of the district:

The Sterling Hill Historic District is significant as a representative example of a particular 18th- and early 19th-century Connecticut settlement type, the upland-ridge village crossroads. Unlike many such centers, Sterling Hill was relatively unaffected by subsequent change in the 19th century or even in recent times, so that it retains much of the appearance it had in its earlier years, with a cluster of old houses, barns, a church, and open fields separated by stone walls. The houses on Sterling Hill are also significant because they embody the characteristic architecture of the period. There are the plain center-chimney houses typical of the 18th century, as well as the finely detailed, elegant dwellings which appeared in the Connecticut countryside in the Federal period. [NR]

District Boundary:

Beginning at the western edge of the district, at the southwest corner of Lot 3, Block 60, as shown on Map 32 in the records of the Plainfield Assessor, the boundary runs northerly along the western line of that lot, then easterly along the lines of that lot and Lot 1, Block 25, as shown on Sterling Assessor Map 3828. At the northeast corner of Lot 1, the boundary turns and runs north in a straight line with the eastern property line of Lot 1 to a point 400' back from Route 14A. It then turns easterly and runs to the southeast corner of Lot 5, Block 25, Map 3828. It follows the western and northern lines of Lot 5 to Green Lane. It then crosses Green Lane to a point on the east side of Green Lane 350' north of the northeast corner of the intersection of Green Lane and Route 14A. It then runs back perpendicular to Green Lane for 400', then turns south making a right angle and runs to Route 14A. It runs westerly along the north edge of Route 14A, then crosses to the northeast corner of Lot 11, Block 33, Map 3648. It runs southerly along the eastern line of that lot and continues in a straight line to a point 500' back from Route 14A, then turns at right angles and continues to the western property line of Lot 10, Block 33, Map 3648. It runs northerly along the western lines of Lots 10 and 8 to the southeast corner of Lot 7A. It then runs westerly along the southern lines of Lots 7A, 7 and 6, continuing across Lot 5 in a straight line. It then runs southerly along the eastern line of Lot 2, then westerly along the southern lines of Lots 2 and 1 to Route 49. It crosses Route 49 to the southeast corner of Lot 1, Block 26, Map 3648 and runs westerly along the southern line of that lot to the Plainfield-Sterling town line. It runs north along the town line to Route 14A, then crosses Route 14A to the first point. [NR]

Features:

Buildings, Vacant Lots

Use:

Agriculture, Residential, Religious

Architectural Style:

Greek Revival, Federal, Georgian. Most of Sterling Hill's houses are typical of New England vernacular building practices in the 18th century. The traditional house form – gable roof with the ridgeline parallel to the road, a symmetrical five-bay facade with a central entry, and a large central chimney – is found throughout the district. Most have clapboarded exteriors, the most common type of exterior covering in the houses' period. Although most of the houses have been modified with later doorways and sash, they retain their characteristic form. [NR]

Era:
18th Century, 19th Century
Sources:

[1] District information retrieved from the town website http://www.sterlingct.us/.
[2] Sterling Hill local historic district, Sterling Hill Historic District Study Committee, 1991, SHPO Library, Hartford.
[3] Parcel IDs retrieved from NRIS 86000152 and matched with the online assessors database for the street addresses (http://sterling.ias-clt.com/parcel.list.php).
[NR] Clouette Bruce and Roth Matthew, Sterling Hill Historic District, National Register Nomination Number- 86000152 NRIS, National Park Service, 1986 - http://pdfhost.focus.nps.gov/docs/NRHP/Text/86000152.pdf; http://pdfhost.focus.nps.gov/docs/NRHP/Photos/86000152.pdf.

Notes:

The local historic district boundary is as per the boundary defined in the National Register nomination form filed with the Connecticut Historic Commission in 1985, relative to the Town of Sterling only. [2]The Sterling Hill historic district, bordering the town limits of Sterling and Plainfield, includes one property located in the town of Plainfield.

Links:
Map:

Local historic district map obtained from Sterling Hill Historic District Study Committee Report, 1991, SHPO Library, Hartford.

View photo
Disclaimer:

The parcels IDs and the street addresses of the designated properties have been obtained by comparison of the parcel IDs retrieved from NRIS 86000152 and the online assessor database available in the website http://sterling.ias-clt.com/parcel.list.php. For further information on the district, the user is urged to contact the respective district authority.

Date of Compilation:
10/31/11
Compiler:
Manjusha Patnaik, CT Trust for Historic Preservation