The Amasa Day House, a rural Federal house showcases how the Industrial Revolution changed the daily life of American families. Located on the Moodus Green, it was constructed in 1816 for farmer, Colonel Julius Chapman, his wife Frances, and their four daughters. Amasa Day purchased the property after Chapman’s death, but later sold off parcels of land as he focused on his roles as insurance agent and banker. Day’s daughter and son-in-law Katherine and Eugene Chaffee inherited the house; Chaffee worked at the nearby New York Net and Twine Company, one of 12 twine factories then located in Moodus. The Chafees redecorated and added an addition.
The house is furnished largely with objects owned by members of the Day family, including toys and locally produced ceramics and silver, and features the original 19th-century floor and stair stenciling applied to mimic carpeting. Also on display are a selection of photographs from among the thousands taken by pioneering art photographer Dr. Amasa Day Chaffee between 1890 and 1925. The house provides evidence of both the lives and lifestyles of the families who occupied the Amasa Day House between 1816 and 1967 and the periods of enormous change in American work and culture that they lived through. Their lives in the house span the American transformation from a traditional to a modern society that is familiar to us today.