Mrs. Peabody's Cottage

Nahant, Mass.

Year Built: 1866

John Hubbard Sturgis designed a cottage in Nahant for a Mrs. Peabody in 1866, but it was never built. The plans were returned to the office and not used.

Sturgis & Brigham had a difficult time collecting the commission on this design ($50.00), as they were believed to be too expensive to implement. Sturgis remarked that the firm should charge 1% of the construction costs, which would mean that the cottage was estimated to cost about $10,000 to build.

Sturgis also said that,

“I see that Mr. Russell fails to pay for Mrs. Peabody’s plans. I think it would be well to write him again saying that it is not customary to give one’s time for nothing, and should he still persist in refusing to pay you can let me know and I shall know what course to pursue. He not only took our usual office time but call on me at my house (an unusual way of doing things) and also sent for me to come to his house one evening--a thing I never before allowed anyone to do and one which I shall never allow again. As it was, I only did as a favor to my wife who said that I had better as Mr. Russell was evidently very anxious to see me and did not know that he was trespassing on my privacy.”

The plans are not known to survive.


• Letters from Charles Brigham to John Hubbard Sturgis, 9/18/1866, 10/8/1866, 2/5/1867, 12/30/1867, 4/20/1868, 9/30/1868 and 12/28/1868, Sturgis Papers, Boston Athenaeum Library.

• Letters from John Hubbard Sturgis to Charles Brigham, 10/26/1866 and 12/28/1866, Sturgis Papers, Boston Athenaeum Library.

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