A bid to save the Charles Ives birthplace

A bid to save the Charles Ives birthplace


norman lebrecht

October 01, 2013

They sold the house the composer built to developers. Now the heritage fight moves to another front.

The birthplace is falling down.

The museum in Danbury, Connecticut, is trying to raise money to save it.

If you think you can help, visit the website or write to info@danburymuseum.org.


From the guide to historic buildings in Connecticut:

Charles Ives Birthplace in Danbury. Ives, born in 1874, was an unconventional composer who combined traditional and revolutionary elements. The original timber frame of his childhood home was built in 1780 by Thomas Tucker, but this building burned in the 1820s. The remains of the structure were purchased by Isaac Ives and rebuilt as a Federal-style houseCharles Edward Ives‘ father George Edward Ives, the youngest band master in the Union Army during the Civil War, was a music teacher who taught his son to embrace unusual combinations of sounds. In 1894,the younger Ives left Danbury to attend Yale. He would go on to form a very successful insurance company, while also composing modernist musical works which would not be fully appreciated by the public until later in the twentieth century. Ives married Harmony Twitchell, the daughter of Mark Twain’s friend, Rev. Joseph Twitchell. The house whereCharles Ives had been born was moved from its first location, on Main Street, to Chapel Place in 1923 and again to Mountainville Avenue in 1966. It was later restored by theDanbury Museum and opened to the public in 1992.