207 Argilla Rd., the Sidney Shurcliff house (1935)

Sidney Shurcliff house, from the February 1947 Architectural Forum magazine.
Sidney Shurcliff house, from the February 1947 Architectural Forum magazine.

In 1902, Mary Lord of Boston purchased 20 Acres of Land on Argilla Road from the Smith family. No buildings are mentioned in the deed. In 1929, Sidney Lord and other parties sold to Benjamin Van Wick three lots, including buildings, bordering on the lot of Dr. Charles Townsend, the well-known naturalist.

Van Wick sold part of the property to Sidney Shurcliff and his father Arthur Shurcliff in 1933, but not including the Lord house, which still stands at 211 Argilla Rd. Sidney Shurcliff, a Boston landscape architect hired architect George W. W. Brewster to convert a summer camp on the lot into his summer residence. A description of the Shurcliff house was in Architectural Forum, February 1947:

Skillful additions expand a country cottage for year-round living

“Despite the talk of closer integration of architecture and landscaping, start-to-finish professional teamwork is still somewhat unusual. In this case, such collaboration was inevitable since client and landscape architect were one and the same person. The architect’s starting point was an existing summer camp which, from a design viewpoint, had little in common with the owner’s desires. Nevertheless, its entire cubage and all exterior wall surface (except where the living room was added) were retained. The living room wing, a new fireplace in the dinning room and the addition of the second story constituted the bulk of the remodeling. Aside from some streamlining of passageways and storage space, the core of the house remained virtually unchanged. The new living room has generous glazing overlooking the marshes and the dining room is embellished by a corner window facing in the same direction.

The 1910 map of Ipswich
The 1910 map shows the location of the Lord house, which still remains standing. A portion of the lot came into the possession of Sidney Shurcliff.
207 Argilla Road today

References: