David Hoadley (architect)

David Hoadley (April 29, 1774 – 1839) was an American architect who worked in New Haven and Middlesex counties in Connecticut.

David Hoadley
David hoadley portrait.jpg
BornApril 29, 1774
DiedJuly 1839
BuildingsNorth Church (United Church on the Green), New Haven, Connecticut
Congregational Church, Orange, Connecticut


Born in Waterbury, Connecticut, the son of Lemuel and Urania (Mallory) Hoadley, he began as a carpenter and builder.[1] He was a descendant of William Hoadley of Branford, Connecticut[2] and a cousin of Silas Hoadley, the clockmaker. His son, David, was a banking and railroad executive instrumental in the completion of the Panama Railroad.

Hoadley was self-taught. In 1795, he is already credited with the design of the Congregational and Episcopal churches in Waterbury. Another early design was the Col. William Leavenworth Mansion in Waterbury, built in 1800, which stood until 1905. He also designed and built the Judge William Bristol House, facing the New Haven Green (built between 1800–1802). Although the building was razed, the house’s doorway was preserved and is in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.[1] He also built a house for Judge John Kingsbury in Waterbury in 1805.[2]

Hoadley was married only a few months to Jane Hull, who died in 1799. Then, in 1805, he married Rachel Beecher of Kent, who survived him.[3]

He moved to New Haven in 1814 to build the landmark North Church on the New Haven Green. He built many houses in New Haven, most of which are no longer standing, as well as the Tontine Hotel, now the site of the federal courthouse.[3] Hoadley also designed churches in the nearby towns of Bethany (1809), Orange (1810), Norfolk (1815), and Milford (1823). A number of other churches in Connecticut are attributed to him. Later, Hoadley returned to Waterbury for the remainder of his life.

While Hoadley had no formal schooling and is dismissed as merely a “builder”[4] by some, others point to his genius in the use of wood for classical detail and his unsurpassed buildings, particularly the North Church.[2]

Selected worksEdit

Properties designed by Hoadley which survive and which are listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places include:

Orange Congregational Church, Orange, CT


  1. ^ a b "An Example of the Work of a Connecticut Architect", Charles O. Cornelius, The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, Vol. 14, No. 8. (Aug., 1919), pp. 169-171.
  2. ^ a b c David Hoadley, Dictionary of American Biography, Base Set, American Council of Learned Societies, 1928-1936. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: Thomson Gale. 2007.
  3. ^ a b The Town and City of Waterbury, Connecticut, Sarah Johnson Prichard, 1896, Price and Lee.
  4. ^ E. M. Brown, New Haven: A guide to architecture and urban design, Yale University Press, 1976.
  5. ^ "The Wheeler-Beecher House Bethany, Connecticut" (PDF). The Wheeler-Beecher House. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 26, 2013. Retrieved September 19, 2012.

External linksEdit