William Sumner Appleton, Jr.
(1874 – 1947) was Founder of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities
(<small>SPNEA</small>) in 1910. He was the chief force behind much of the preservation
of historic homes in the New England
area. Appleton, who had a degree from Harvard
and was economically comfortable, worked tirelessly to promote preservation of buildings from the 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries. He focused on buildings that were aesthetically pleasing, had historic significance, and could be independently supported. His method of preservation focused on cautious, deliberate restoration only when experts were involved and restorations were reversible. When he died in 1947
, the </small>SPNEA</small> had grown tremendously and remains a strong and active organization today. Renamed Historic New England
, the organization owns thirty-six historic properties.
He was born on May 29, 1874 in Boston, to William Sumner Appleton (1840-1903) and Edith Stuart (d.1892). As a boy he lived at 39 Beacon Street
(also known as the Nathan Appleton Residence
He was educated at Hopkinson's School for Boys, Boston, and graduated from Harvard College in 1896.
Around 1916 he lived on... Read More