Rear View Strong Porter House
1730 Coventry CT. The saltbox originated in New England, and is an example of American colonial architecture. One theory holds that the saltbox form was popularized by Queen Anne's taxation of houses greater than one story. Since the rear of the roof descended to the height of a single-story building, the structure was exempt from the tax. More likely, though, the saltbox shape evolved organically from the need for additional space for growing families; adding a lean-to was an economical way to enlarge the house. The earliest saltbox houses were created when a lean-to addition was added onto the rear of the original house extending the roof line sometimes to less than six feet from ground level. Old weathered clapboards are still in place on parts of the original rear exterior walls of some of the earliest New England saltbox houses.