Tripp House - Over 200 Years in The Lackawanna Valley
In 1771 Isaac Tripp I purchased a large tract of land here and built a temporary dwelling near
where Tripp House is located today. He had earlier helped to settle the Wyoming Valley and wanted
to prove that the Lackawanna Valley was safe for settlement. He was the first settler and he
represented the two valleys as the Assembly in Hartford, Connecticut.
It is interesting to note that his daughter, Ruth, and her husband Jonathan Slocum of Wilkes-Barre,
were parents of Frances Slocum who was captured by Indians and of Ebenezer Slocum
who made the first iron here. The now central city Scranton area where he did his work
was known as Slocum Hollow.
In ca. 1778 Isaac Tripp II built a substantial house which is the nucleus of the present
Tripp House. His father had been killed by Indians late that year in Wilkes-Barre. In 1786 he
enlarged the house to an "L" shape when his wife and six children joined him here.
In 1812, after the death of his father in 1807, Isaac Tripp III engaged builders from Hartford to
further enlarge the house and remodel it in the Federal Style.
In 1814, Ira Tripp, the fourth generation of this branch of the family, was born in the house.
A colorful and leading member of the community, he is remembered for many of his activities.
He was a director of banks and was a founder of the Scranton Trust Co. He loved good horses
and had a racing park on his property. State Fairs were held on his farms.
After the Civil War (during his service he was captured and spent a winter in prison near Richmond)
he added Victorian decoration to the house and added the Conservatory for his daughter,
Gertrude, who had been badly injured falling from a horse.
Ira and Rosanna Tripp (she was a descendant of the Rittenhouse family of Philadelphia) survived
their four children. Their son, Lee Tripp, and his wife Jennie Pearce, had two children, Walter
and Kate. Walter married and moved to San Diego leaving his sister the surviving member of
the family here. He died in 1901.
In 1892 Kate Tripp, the sixth generation, married John F. Broadbent, son of an English family
living here. The son, Ira Tripp Broadbent, carried on the Tripp name.
Colonel Ira Tripp died in 1891 and Mrs. Tripp continued to live in the house, dividing her
time between Scranton and San Diego. After her death in 1899 the house was sold out of the
family, passing through several hands for the next eighty years. In 1980 The Junior League
took over the house and undertook a major restoration and renovation. While the Junior League
still maintains its headquarters in the house, a group of interested citizens has assumed
ownership and will continue to maintain the house as a vital civic and historical resource
for our Community.
Tripp House has been described by the National Heritage Corporation as, "more than any building
in Scranton, an expression of the City's history - a Federal house built by early New England
settlers. Few houses outside the metropolitan areas of the Eastern seaboard posses so many
of the finest characteristics of the period."