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William Howell Foster was the son of Isaac P. Foster, Honesdale pioneer and business partner of Jason Torrey. Foster and Torrey built and opened the first general store and were involved in virtually …
William Howell Foster was the son of Isaac P. Foster, Honesdale pioneer and business partner of Jason Torrey. Foster and Torrey built and opened the first general store and were involved in virtually every aspect of village life in the 1820s and ‘30s. Young William married Harriet Jessup and, in 1869, built this handsome house on Honesdale’s North Main Street. The best master craftsmen in the area were employed and the cost of materials was rumored to be high. Legend has it that when costs rose above $25,000, Foster threw away his pencil and finished the building without regard to cost.
After his death in 1880 and his wife’s 10 years later, his heirs sold the property to glass manufacturer T. B. Clark. Clark died in 1894, leaving the house to his daughter, who sold it in 1946 to the Wayne County Home Association for use as a retirement facility known as Seven Maples. Finally, in 1988 the Foster house became the home of the Wayne County Public Library.
From the files of the Wayne County Historical Society. The museum and library are open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.