This first picture is a current one showing the Chase House in Portsmouth, RI. The history: This house once belonged to a Mr. John Chase Portsmouth's state representative. The house itself is valued at about 6,500 dollars. The property it sits on is valued at about 1.6 million dollars.
My wife (second wife, now married nearly 17yrs) and I simply love this house even in the state it's in currently. 6 years ago, mid fall we had asked a friend to watch our kids and had gone out on a date night. After dinner as we drove around the island (Newport, Portsmouth and Middletown RI are all located on an island) we drove past the house it was about 2330 (1130pm) and it was just something to do... As we passed we looked at each other and asked "Did you see...?" We kind of talked over each other because we had both seen what appeared to be a black door on the front of the house, what's more it looked like there were lights on either side of it. I turned around on a nearby street and we returned to the house.
Pulling up near it we got out and walked towards the front door, hoping that someone had started restoring the old house. The shrubs and trees were still overgrown but we could see the lights on either side of the door as we approached, once fully in front of the house we realized that the porch lights flickered as if they were gas lanterns and the door was a glossy black color with a brass knocker with windows on either side. We stood there, more confused than scared wondering why someone had started the restoration like this. The front of the house looked, well, not new, but well cared for, as if it had never fallen into disrepair.
We stood there thinking about knocking on the door and then deciding not to because we needed to get home to the kids. We left, drove off and talked about it all the way home... The one thing we both agreed on was that if we had knocked we knew...KNEW... Someone would answer.
We got home, paid the sitter, tucked the kids into bed, and went to bed ourselves. Next day while we were out we happened to be on the same road that the Chase House is on and as we drove past we noticed that the front was still all boarded up, windows, door, all of it. No work had been done, there was no fresh paint... nothing.
We still talk about this every once in a while and we are still both convinced that someone would have opened that door and asked us inside, but into where?
Here's what the house looked like in the 1890's and Yes that is Mr. John Chase out in front.