The Charles Sumner House (1805)

At 20 Hancock Street on Beacon Hill in Boston is the home once occupied by Senator Charles Sumner. It was built in 1805 by Ebenezer Farley and was purchased by Sumner’s father in 1830. Charles Sumner was a fiery opponent of slavery and the victim of a famous caning, delivered by Representative Preston Brooks on the floor of the Senate on May 22, 1856. After the Civil War, Sumner was a leader of the Radical Republicans. He lived in the house until 1867 and was possibly the one who added the Greek Revival portico that links nos. 20 and 22 Beacon Hill.

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2 Responses to The Charles Sumner House (1805)

  1. Thom Nickels says:

    I lived in this house while finishing up my alternate service work contract as a Vietnam War-era conscientious objector. I saw and experienced strange things while I lived there. Look for the forthcoming book.

  2. nikki noltemy says:

    My great grandmother Helen Smith owned this house and my sisters and I spent a lot of time in this house and I remember she still owned a lot of the property that was in the house like the old feather beds, paintings, etc.. we rarely ever went up stairs and their were four floors and approx 26 rooms and the few times we did go upstairs my nana and my mom came with us and I always remember having an uneasy feeling when I would visit her. But that strange feeling was amplified immensely when we did venture off to the other floors. My grandmother never went upstairs either she stayed and lived strictly on the 1st floor. I always assumed it was because she was aging but I imagine there were other reasons. even with being afraid there were always so many things I found fascinating. It was like living and visiting a museum in ways because my nana was not the decorating type and very much the hoarding type fortunately she had plenty of rooms to spread out the property she had and held on to because she never got rid of things. She also owned a rooming house she owned and ran herself across the street that my mom helped her keep up with when my mom was a little girl. She sold that property before me and my sisters were born. She passed away at a very old age (approx 100yrs old) in November 2005. So needless to say she spent many many years in that house and I did know that she owned Charles Sumner’s house and I always thought of that as being kinda cool as a kid. I actually just came across a document declaring it a historical site that my grandmother signed and its really interesting because there is a biography amongst other pretty interesting things in that document. I enjoyed stumbling upon that as well as this page. Cheers!

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