House on a Rock at Rhode Island

| October 31, 2009

House on a Rock at Rhode Island | Clingstone, an unusual and such a vintage, 103-year-old mansion in Rhode Island’s Narragansett Bay, survives through the love and hard work of family and friends. Henry Wood, the owner, runs the house like a camp where all skilled workers welcome. The Jamestown Boatyard hauls the family’s boats and floating dock and stores them each winter in return for a week’s use of the house in the summer. Once in a while, they are traveling overseas. For cheap flight tickets, please visit

House on a Rock 1
House on a Rock 1

Mr. Wood, a 79-year-old Boston architect, bought the house with his ex-wife Joan in 1961 for $3,600. It had been empty for two decades. Clingstone had been built by a distant cousin, J.S. Lovering Wharton. Mr. Wharton worked with an artist, William Trost Richards, to create a house of picture windows with 23 rooms on three stories radiating off a vast central hall. The total cost of the construction, which was completed in 1905, was $36,982.99. However, bear in mind that the currency in 1905 is not the same as for now. Possibly the price is estimated about $4 millions.

House on a Rock

House on a Rock

An early sketch of the house shows the plan on how they develop the greatest architecture. Mr. Wood is as proud as any parent of his house, and keeps a fat scrapbook of photographs and newspaper clippings that document its best moments. Many of the historic photos he has were provided by the company that insured the house for its original owners. The Newport Bridge is visible from the windows of the Ping-Pong room, to the left of the fireplace. The house is maintained by an ingenious method: the Clingstone work weekend. Held every year around Memorial Day, it brings 70 or so friends and Clingstone lovers together to tackle jobs like washing all 65 of the windows. Anne Tait, who is married to Mr. Wood’s son Dan, refinished the kitchen floor on one of her first work weekends.

House on a Rock
House on a Rock

There are 10 bedrooms at Clingstone, all with indecently beautiful views. The dining room table seats 14. Refinishing the chairs is a task on the list for a future work weekend. Sign by the ladder that leads to the roof reads “No entry after three drinks or 86 years of age“.

“It used to say 80 but we had a guy on a work weekend who was 84, so I changed it,” said Mr. Wood, ever the realist. It would have been a shame to curtail the activities of a willing volunteer.

House on a Rock
House on a Rock
House on a Rock
House on a Rock
House on a Rock
Image Sources: Boston Travel

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Category: Featured, North America

Comments (187)

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  1. very interesting blog. We really like the home on the rock. We will share this with the class

  2. That reminds of some of the vacation spots my grandparents took me on as a child, but nothing quite as spectacular as you have share here. We never went to Rhode Island though…

  3. bonus bwin says:

    I have to say that is an amazing picture. To have a house in the middle of the ocean is just unbelievable.

  4. I am so happy here and enjoy this story. It brings me some special feelings. Hope you have a cheerful day.

  5. Be yourself regardless of other people’s saying. Believe yourself you are the best!

  6. AMAZING!!! Wouldnt mind having a house like that!

  7. I have to say that is an amazing picture. To have a house in the middle of the ocean is just unbelievable.

  8. keramicar says:

    very inspirational home for life.

  9. Such a great house man. Its so lovely only if there are no pirates there :). I would definitely want the permission from the owner to visit. Hey Wood would you do this for me?

  10. DCRe says:

    this house is AWESOME! this house is something for the owner to treasure πŸ™‚ I also saw one of this type of house at a real estate website –> and I think the owner is selling it for a very affordable price.

  11. This is like Adams family house πŸ™‚ Great place for kids to play.

  12. Wonderful house, I think this house is a dream and it’s become a reality.
    Really I’m out of word…what to say about it… This is just a spectacular creation.

  13. Wow Amazing house. Its too good and specially staying at such a calm place with your loved one is really going to be a very good experience. Are you selling or renting it?

  14. The plus-size future is not completely bleak

  15. That is wonderful. More of a private island. It looks really lovely and would be every retired couple’s dream. I am just wondering about troubles the members would have been facing there in the house. But the beauty of the sea from the house is overwhelming.

  16. Polystyrene says:

    Lovely island house. It would be a dream come true to live at such a wonderful place. Loved the creativity and uniqueness of the creator and moreover it is spacious too πŸ˜›

  17. Great Information you got here..thank you for sharing this knowledge with us.

  18. Owing a house like this one should make any one proud. Keeping it, on the other hand must be a drag, though the nice old owner doesn’t seem too concerned about this as I can see on the look of his face. I really wonder if one could live in a house like this the whole year around…

  19. keylogger says:

    Thanks to you so much for sharing this wonderful piece of work with us.

  20. This house is absolutely amazing. Never saw such a concept and i must say if i had some money i would make one for me and my wife.

  21. amazing house, i’d like one also for me. Great post by the way!

  22. Great page you have in here. thanks for sharing.

  23. where is my comment?thanks for sharing.

  24. logo says:

    what a house this is πŸ™‚ i is really a dream home

  25. Very informative and helpful. I was searching for this information but there are very limited resources. Thank you for providing this information

  26. Well worth to read this article, thanks for sharing this information. With this article you offered me got a chance to know about this, anyway i say Great Article!

  27. I’m so glad to have found your web page. My pal mentioned it to me before, yet never got around to checking it out until now. I must express, I’m floored. I really enjoyed reading through your posts and will absolutely be back to get more.

  28. A very good and interesting post that i have come across, thanks for sharing the post.
    Really appreciable.

  29. It is a pleasureful reading for me… I love this type of great staff… Thanks!!!

  30. How awesome is the dining room…great place for a photo-shoot.

  31. KedR says:

    One of the most beautifully located houses I have seen.

  32. Indian Wedding Photographer says:

    Lovely, wish this was my house πŸ˜€

    Indian Wedding Photographer Sydney

  33. bandung says:

    Wow Amazing house. Its too good and specially staying at such a calm place with your loved one is really going to be a very good experience.

  34. kota kembang says:

    It’s pictures like these that make you want to make it somewhere some day.

  35. Davao City says:

    I have never seen any real thing like this. It must be awesome living in one of this houses!

  36. I’m not sure where you are getting your information, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more. Thanks for excellent info I was looking for this House on a Rock at Rhode Island | Akademi Fantasia Travel for my mission.