, Salem, MA

May 31, 2013

Letter: Why wasn't the Shattuck house restored

The Salem News

---- — To the editor:

Do many readers remember the name “Shattuck” from the colonial days? It was there then and exists today. It was one of a small number of early names (including Ingersoll, Maverick, Hatch, Saltonstall) that were present in early New England.

A sturdy Puritan home stood on Essex Street in Salem, very likely constructed there before 1688. Samuel Shattuck, a cloth dyer, lived in the house, which stood across from the venerable First Church. During the witch trials, testament was given from this address.

Regrettably, the Essex Institute Collections notes this place was demolished in 1911, and in time was replaced by the Gainsborough Photography Studio. Presently it’s the site of condos, redesigned in the colonial style.

The question remains: Why wasn’t the Shattuck House restored? It very likely had more historical authenticity than the Witch House.

We have lost other historical places since then. Will Salem continue to make such mistakes?

Edward W. Carberg