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Nickels-Sortwell House

Nickels-Sortwell House

The Nickels-Sortwell House, located on the main street of Wiscasset, Maine, USA, was built in 1807 by Captain William Nickels, a ship owner and trader. The style and age of the building reflect "a period when shipbuilding and the maritime trade brought prosperity and sophisticated tastes to this riverside community.

Early in the house's history the "Embargo Act of 1807, followed by the War of 1812, crippled the shipping industry, and many coastal families lost their fortunes. Around 1830, the house was transformed into a hotel. Towards the end of the century, when the Maine coast had become fashionable as a summer resort, Alvin Sortwell purchased the building as a summer residence.

Eventually, "Sortwell and his daughter, Frances, a leader in the local preservation movement, refurbished it in the Colonial Revival manner. The grounds, landscaped in 1926 with period gardens and an elaborate classical fence, are currently being restored. The building is owned and operated as a historic house museum by Historic New England and is a National Historic Landmark.

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