The 39th Festival of Historic Houses will take place on June 15-16 in the Paterson Park Neighborhood
, located in the Blackstone Park Historic District
. Self-guided private house tours will take place Saturday, June 15, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
, while Sunday, June 16,
will feature guided walking tours
the neighborhood and its green spaces. PPS will also host a special
Festival preview party on Thursday, June 13. Ticket are now on sale at ProvidenceHouseTour.com.
At the turn of the 20th century the accessibility of modern utilities
expanded beyond captains of industry to middle-class citizens. The
Paterson Park neighborhood was one of the newly-accessible neighborhoods
designed for the professional middle class. These were the homes of
physicians, insurance agents, importers, chemists, lawyers, jewelers,
and professors of the day, and also where the writer H.P. Lovecraft
spent the early part of his life.
While today we may not consider sewage lines revolutionary, at the
time these homes were created they were the leading edge of
infrastructure in America. The new century also spawned a nation-wide
appreciation for city planning and the development of public parks and
recreational facilities. Paterson Park residents could enjoy the nearby
Blackstone Park as well as the Seekonk River. Having access to the only
unpolluted and undeveloped water parcels in the city was a major
attraction for the neighborhood. A number of private schools also
relocated to the area between 1910 and 1920, making it an even more
desirable location for the upwardly-mobile professional class.
We encourage you to attend this year’s Festival to learn more about this tucked-away enclave on Providence’s East Side.