RALSTON-MCKEEN HOUSE (CIRCA 1795)

 

About

Situated next to the Wolf Academy, this late eighteenth century home is typical of the beautiful Georgian-style square cut limestone houses built by the Scots-Irish and German immigrants who settled in this area.

The first-floor northern end of the house is believed to have originally been built by Captain James Ralston, a gentleman farmer and surveyor who in 1816 drew the plans that lay out the town of Bath.  The property then came into the hands of Thomas McKeen, a storekeeper who would later become the city of Easton's most prominent citizen.  McKeen is believed to have built the more formal two story southern end, and is known to have operated a store in the house's dirt floor basement.

In 1981 the Governor Wolf Historical Society purchased the Ralston-McKeen house in order to restore it to its original condition.  The home consists of eight rooms, six of which have large fireplaces.  Although abandoned for many years, nearly all of the original trim and fireplace mantles remain.

Major structural work on this home, including a new roof, rebuilt chimneys, and exterior pointing of the stone walls has been performed by the Society.  In July 1996 an archaeological dig around the western stairs found numerous artifacts now on display at the Society's museum.