WARREN — The Touisset section of Warren is the corner of a peninsula that borders Swansea, Massachusetts, the Kickemuit River and Mount Hope Bay. It is a leafy, quiet, rural neighborhood with a history as a seasonal home for Native Americans and later as a summer-home community.
Today, the waterfront locale is mainly a year-round residential area, though there appear to still be a few summer homes and unwinterized cottages left in the housing mix, along with some new construction.
From Main Street in Warren, the route to this out-of-the-way neighborhood begins from Child Street (Route 103), heads east, then turns south at Long Lane, east at Barton Road, then continues south again at Touisset Road. Several newer housing developments have been built recently on the road to Touisset Point, but there are also open fields and farmland along this route, along with the Audubon Society’s Touisset Marsh Wildlife Refuge.
Popular with birdwatchers,the 66-acre refuge offers a walking trail that leads from the Touisset Fire Co. on Touisset Road through fields to the Kickemuit River.
At Touisset Point, the housing development is more dense and compact, with many cottages on small house lots close to the water. At this time of year, many gardens are in bloom, and the homes have plenty of quaint touches such as window boxes filled with flowers, picket fences and stone walls.
The Touisset Point Community Club, a private nonprofit organization for individuals and families who own homes or live within the Touisset Point, owns a clubhouse and tennis courts. Membership is open to those who live in or own homes located from the corner of Touisset Road and Barton Avenue extending to the southernmost section of Touisset Point.
According to the club’s website, the name Touisset “comes from the Native American Wampanoag name Toweset, which is translated variously as ‘at the old field’ and ‘at the corn field.’ Before the arrival of European settlers … Touisset Point was, at least seasonally, inhabited by Native Americans who enjoyed the bounty of the land, air and water.”
Settlement of Touisset Point dates to around 1720. At one time the Mason family owned the entire southern section of Touisset Neck. The point became a summer-home colony in the early 1900s after the old Coggeshall Farm was platted in 1901 and subdivided into 50-by-100-foot house lots.
There were 18 houses listed for sale in Touisset last week, with 10 in the $600,000 to $900,000 range. Prices started at $329,000 for a home at 9 Bradbury St. in Touisset Point, a three-bedroom ranch built in 1945 with 1,292 square feet of living space. At the high end, a short distance away, at 7 Emery Rd., a house is listed for $1.2 million. This home, also on the point, was built in 1925 and has 4,218 square feet of space.