The architectural design of Saint Clements began with the 16th century castles of Europe. Centuries later, a New York architect named Sidney Algernon Bell incorporated several interesting features in the manor house, which include the long balcony modeled after the Inn of William the Conqueror at Divers, France, and the Art Gallery which was modeled after the Great Hall of the Chateau of Langeais. The two Norman towers add a distinctive feature to the French Tudor entrance.
The 17th century saw the rapid growth of the Connecticut River towns. In the Middletown area, the Taylor family settled to become farmers, ministers and barristers. Many years later, Howard Taylor, while working as a Solicitor, secured a large sum of money and, together with his wife Gertrude, proceeded and began building the now historic Saint Clements Castle in 1898.
Granite blocks for the walls were brought to the site by oxen. The wood is chestnut and oak, which were plentiful and nearly indestructible.
The actual construction of the Castle was handled by workmen from the Middletown/ Portland area. Many were Italian and Irish immigrants who walked to work each day. Evidence of their careful craftsmanship is still visible in the woodwork and masonry. Notice, especially, the towers and exterior garden wall.
The Saint Clements Foundation
In 1993, the historic Saint Clements Castle was gifted to the Saint Clements Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization formulated for the preservation of the Castle, its gardens and art treasures. The Trustees began a detailed restoration of the gables, walkways, balconies and the courtyards.
The Trustees love for art, antiques and historical appreciation is now evident in the Art Gallery and throughout the Estate.
Saint Clements Estate and Marina, with over one mile of riverfront has become a developer's dream, and are now preserved for future generations.
From it's inception, the Foundation has supported Charities for the Homeless, Hospice Care and Programs for the local Children.