The Capt. Nathaniel Norden House (1686)

The Capt. Nathaniel Norden House, at 15 Glover Square in Marblehead, was built around 1686 with an integral lean-to. According to Eben Putnam’s Lieutenant Joshua Hewes (1913),

Capt. Nathaniel Norden of Marblehead, son of Samuel, was born 27 Nov., 1653. He was at first a mariner, and later a prosperous merchant. He was one of the selectmen of Marblehead in 1690, and that year he and Capt. Legg are asked by the General Court to explain why they have not kept better order at Marblehead. He was of the Council for Massachusetts, 1708-23.

A later resident of the house was the loyalist Ashley Bowen in the 1760s. As described by Samuel Roads in The History and Traditions of Marblehead,

Though there had been Roman Catholics in Marblehead for many years, there was no attempt to have a celebration of the mass in town until the year 1851. During that year, the Rev. Thomas Shehan, pastor of St. James Church, Salem, visited the town, and celebrated mass in the house of Mr. Dennis Donovan, on the corner of Prospect and Commercial streets. Father Shehan afterwards came to Marblehead twice a year for the purpose of hearing confessions and administering the Holy Communion, the services being held alternately at the house of Mr. Donovan and that of Mr. John Mahoney, on Glover Square [aka the Norden House].

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2 Responses to The Capt. Nathaniel Norden House (1686)

  1. Michael Hogan says:

    Jonathan B. Monroe and I owned this houes at one time and upon breaking through a wall, downstairs, to the left of the front door, as you look at it from inside, found the remains of a narrow staircase leading from the cellar to the attic. This stair was parallel to the the current staircase and hidden in the wall. Was perhaps, at most, 2 feet wide. Treads and risers were gone but the stringers remained. A hand forged key was hanging on a handforged nail inside this area and we gave it to the buyers of the property. Facinating. I have much more information about this house if anyone cares.

  2. fred and elise brink, current owners of 15 glover square says:

    Michael, We’d love to talk to you. WE care.
    Who’d you give the key to? We’ve found out some historical things too. Did you really break through the first floor wall yourselves, and/or make the doorway that’s there now?
    It’s hard to tell which of so many owners did what before we bought the house.