Jessie Bross Lloyd

Jessie Bross Lloyd

1845 – 1904

Jessie Bross Lloyd came to New England from Chicago with her husband Henry Demarest Lloyd and their four boys in search of a summer home. They visited the Cape first, but felt it was too developed. They happened to visit Sakonnet and fell in love. The Lloyds purchased the southern tip of Sakonnet Point from Colonel Henry T. Sisson in 1888. They rented a house on Warren’s Point called “Pigs for Sale” while they waited for “Watch House,” a large summer home overlooking the Atlantic, to be built. They called Watch House the “house without a key” and, as staunch Socialists, invited people from all walks of life to visit them there. They employed no servants and instead assigned all guests chores upon their arrival.

Jessie was the daughter of William Bross, the founder of The Chicago Tribune, and lived a life of comfort. Throughout her adult life she worked for justice. Jessie used her privilege and advantages to understand and aid the poor, always striving to form genuine relationships. Social reformer Jane Addams would send Jessie her most challenging cases, and Jessie would welcome them into her home.

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Outdoor exhibit panel from the 2020 special exhibition, The Little Compton Women’s History Project.
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