Reynoldston’s houses revealed a great deal about the community. Most of the laborers’ houses lining the Eddy Road were essentially alike; simple gabled structures completely devoid of the ornamentation so common in the era in which they were built – the 1890s and early 1900s. Many were constructed by Reynolds Brothers carpenters and rented to the mill workers and loggers. They were in fact uniform “company houses”, examples of which can be seen in old industrial neighborhoods and mill towns throughout the United States.
The houses were small, most having only two to three rooms down and two up. As families grew in size, the houses usually did not. Census records may explain why: children were often working (and possibly living away from home) by age 17. So even large families were not all together at the same time.
At the mill end of Reynoldston, Orson and Newton Reynolds’ houses stood out. Orson’s one-and-a-half story house, probably built in the 1870s, was likely the oldest in the community. Similar houses had been common in New England since at least the 18th century. Throughout the North Country, many farm owners’ houses were very similar to Orson’s, while hired men’s houses tended to look much like laborers’ simple houses along the Eddy Road.
The most elaborate and modern house ever constructed in Reynoldston belonged to Newton Reynolds. It stood not far from Orson’s house, near the mill. Built about 1900 in the Queen Anne style popular at the time, it boosted a tower from which to view Reynoldston and the surrounding countryside. Inside, there was a special room for Newton’s hunting trophies. The house sent a clear signal of where the wealth in Reynoldston resided.
The Reynolds houses and Mill, however, proved to be impermanent. While a few of the loggers’ houses are still standing, the mill buildings and Orson and Newton Reynolds’ houses were torn down for the wood, possibly as early as the 1930s.
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