This 10-Foot Wide House Sold For $1 Million Dollars And Here’s The Incredible Story Behind It

By: Lilli Keeve | Published: Nov 17, 2023

There are certainly some unique homes in the United States, whether they are big or tiny, historical, or modern. The U.S. is home to all different kinds of architectural styles. This interesting story about a home in Boston is a testament to the fact that all houses have a history. In particular, the one in this story is extremely unique. Buckle up because we’ve got a fascinating article ahead. 

The Time To Renovate The House Was Near

Liam Presley had been waiting for a long time to renovate the old house that was so near and dear to his beloved grandpa. Liam felt it was important, so he dipped into his savings and salary. This was an incredibly exciting moment for him and his dream could finally become a reality. 



Although he didn’t have much support from his family and friends (the real estate agent even laughed at him), Liam still went on with the renovations. However, as he ended the final stages of the renovation, a shocking truth was revealed to him. 


This House Had A Valuable Significance To Liam

After Liam’s grandpa passed away, the only thing he left to Liam was a decrepit, worn-down house in Charleston, Boston. The house was a true gem and Liam’s initial reaction certainly verifies that fact – not for the reason you think.


Source: Kristin LaFratta

Unlike anything he had ever come across in his life, Liam was immediately moved to tears the moment his eyes saw the house. He choked on his own tears while staring at the home, not because he was overcome with happiness, but because he felt his dearest grandpa had betrayed him. 

The Warren Family Was Integral To Boston’s History

Liam was 31 years old at the time, the youngest in the Warren family. The Warrens were an important family that had their foundation in the country’s liberation for more than 400 years. Needless to say, it sounds as if Liam had big shoes to fill. 


Source: Heritage Art Heritage Images Via/ Getty Images

Being a Warren had always felt like a massive burden, considering that he and his family were constantly under scrutiny by the media. Belonging to such a famous family really took a toll on Liam and being in the public eye was very stressful. However, that would soon change. 

Liam Tried His Best To Appreciate The House

Obviously, Liam wanted to show that he was appreciative of the gift his grandfather passed down to him even though he felt differently at first. He also wanted to demonstrate how grateful he was to be a Warren and all that comes with that privilege. Liam went to school to become an architect and began a promising career in that career field. Little did Liam know that what happened next would impact his life forever. 


Source: Alan Berlow/ VHT

One evening, Liam’s mom called him when he wasn’t home. Due to his grandpa’s unhealthy state, he quickly answered. The news he got about his ailing grandpa shattered Liam completely. 

Sad News For Liam And His Family

During their phone call, Liam’s mom shared that his grandpa had passed. Frozen, Liam tried to utter a word but his mouth wouldn’t work. Out of all the Warrens, he had the closest connection with his grandpa. Liam idolized his grandpa for everything that he achieved in his lifetime.

Source: Alan Berlow/ VHT

Liam even became an architect because his grandpa was one, which is how Liam came to admire every aspect of house design. The tragic news hit Liam really hard and he had no idea how much it would impact the rest of his life. 


Liam Was Unsure How To Feel About The House At First

As the days went on, Liam’s grandpa was buried next to his forefathers in a moving burial ceremony. It wasn’t too long after the ceremony that his grandpa’s lawyers read his will, informing Liam what was left for him. 

Source: Americans Channel/ Youtube

Initially, Liam wasn’t too happy that his grandpa left behind a derelict house for him in Charlestown. The rest of his family members got a better end of the deal, while Liam got the short end of the stick. It was only when he actually visited the house that he understood his grandpa’s motives. 


The Derelict House That Now Belonged To Liam

Liam was standing in front of a 1,165-square-foot narrow house, also known as the “Spite House.” The house’s paint was visibly chipping and the windows were broken. Additionally, the grass was overgrown, a clear sign that nobody had been there for a long time. Most of the wood was rotting away and there weren’t any signs of furniture inside.

Source: Porter Gifford Corbis Via/ Getty Images

As he opened the door to the house, he felt brokenhearted by what his grandpa left for him. He was about to leave, but then something about the house caught his eye. 


This House Had Unique Architecture…And Something Else

Liam noticed how unusual and unique the house’s architecture was, and it differed from any other home he had seen. It’s as if he had been transported to the 18th century, with the house as the time machine.

Source: Americans Channel/ Youtube

His mouth dropped open as he observed every single detail and inch of this magical place. Liam cracked a smile and thought about how grateful he was that his grandpa left such a special house for him. Then, Liam had a crazy idea that would have made his grandpa proud. 


Liam Honored His Grandfather By Renovating The House

The house turned into a passion project for Liam and decided to renovate it. Overly enthusiastic, Liam rushed home that same evening to set his plan in motion. He spent the next two years renovating the house and giving it all the love and care it deserved.


Using all of his savings and salary, Liam poured all that he was able to in the renovations. Nobody had faith that he could pull it off, but Liam went through with the plan regardless of what other people thought. He would ultimately prove them all wrong. 


The House Displayed A Transcendent Beauty

Months at a time passed as Liam poured his heart and soul into the house’s renovations. He had decided to keep its original motif and went the extra mile to locate any 18th century furniture that would spice up the style. When he was finalizing the repairs, people took notice and began talking.

Source: AtlasObscura

For two years long, they didn’t take what he was doing seriously and thought it was a joke. Despite this, Liam kept his eyes on the prize with the goal to honor his grandpa in the best way that he could. 


Finally…It Was Completed

Two years later, the house was finally done. Liam had successfully created a historical time capsule to the past with his designs. He was all the rage in Charlestown, a man who had transcended all odds to go through with his vision and honored his grandfather. 

Source: Roadtrip New England

There was a buzz in Boston going around about the beautifully renovated 18th-century house. Well-known realtors started to visit and gained immense interest in the home. The real question was: would Liam actually sell it? 


The 10-Foot Wide House Now Had A Gigantic Pricetag

The 18th-century time capsule that Liam had gone through all the hard work and money of renovating was only 10 feet wide. That’s quite something. The house fits right in with the rest of the neighborhood and was the most aesthetically pleasing home in all of Charlestown. 

Source: Americans Channel/ Youtube

Liam finally made the choice to sell it at an auction, but he had no clue what people wanted for it. At the end of the auction, $1.25 million dollars was the highest price a realtor bid for the house. Liam was utterly speechless. And there was even more…


The Buyer Of The House Had An Interesting Idea

Liam was informed by the buyer that they weren’t going to necessarily live in the house. Instead, they had the idea of transforming it into a museum to showcase the heritage of Charlestown. The home would be filled with more 18th-century furniture, paintings, and sculptures, and it would be open to the public as a historical landmark. 

Source: Santi Visalli/ Getty Images

No matter what they did with the house, they were to keep its original name. What was Liam going to do? The dilemma weighed heavily on him. 


Liam Faced A Tough Decision

Consulting with his family first, Liam thought it would be best to sell the house. They agreed that he should go with his heart. Liam began this journey furious with his grandpa for leaving him an old house, and now it was about to be sold for $1 million dollars. 

Source: Atlantic Visuals

The decision was a tough one to make, but Liam carefully considered every option. He entertained the thought of selling the house. Sadly, he had grown very attached to it over the years of the renovation, yet he hoped he would make the right choice in the end. 


Between A Rock And A Hard Place

Caught between keeping the house for himself and allowing the public to enjoy and celebrate his family’s legacy, Liam had a difficult choice to make. As he was thinking about all of this, he realized he had felt the same way he did when the lawyer shared the will with Liam.

Source: TwistedSifter

Liam had felt selfish back then, and knew that wouldn’t be the case here. He called the buyer and proceeded with selling the house, with the thought in mind that his grandpa would be really proud of him. So, how did this 10-foot-wide house actually come into existence? 


The House Was Actually An Impulse Buy

Liam’s grandpa loved odd things, so when he first laid eyes on the “Spite House,” he had to have it. His grandpa purchased it on a whim with the intention of fixing it up and restoring it to its former glory. 

Source: TwistedSifter

He was mesmerized by the house’s bizarre history. Unfortunately, his grandpa’s deteriorating health prevented him from following through with the renovations he had planned on doing. Liam couldn’t let his grandpa’s dream go unfinished.  


An Intriguing History Lived Within The House’s Walls

It isn’t often that you hear of a house being built with the intention of revenge in mind. That’s exactly what happened with this “Spite House.” The man who had built it made sure that he made life really difficult for a group of people in the neighborhood. 

Source: LifeBuzz

Lewis Sharp placed a lot of importance on placement. Livability seemed like an afterthought because the house was deemed to be so unlivable. What was the real reason Sharp built the house? 


His Real Intention Behind Building The House

In the 1830s, Sharp was a hardworking man. Like most businessmen in those days, they loved coming home from a long day of work and pouring a stiff drink. Relaxing after a hard day was crucial. 

Source: Saturday Evening Post

Sharp could never fully enjoy his peaceful and pleasant evenings because of one annoying problem. It became an unbearable issue that he could not stand any longer, thus being at his wit’s end. He had to do something fast before losing his mind. 


Sharp Had A Genius Idea

People loitering and making loud noises in the alleyway next to his home was driving him crazy. The sounds of broken bottles and irritating brawls would make their way right up to Sharp’s upper-story window during the wee hours of the night.  

Source: Jacob A Riis/Museum of The City of New York/ Getty Images

Even more than that, Sharp was sick and tired of the clip-clopping of horse-drawn carriages coming through the alleyway. He couldn’t take it anymore and hatched a genius plan to stop the incessant noises. 


Revenge Was Sharp’s Middle Name

Sharp was cackling to himself like a wild man. His amazing plan was to halt all the sounds and get even. But, was it even legal? He didn’t even care about the logistics or how it would all unravel. Stopping the traffic was the first and last thing on his mind every day. 

Source: Bettman/Contributor via Getty Images

Sharp was sick of everything. He needed the noises and sounds and clip-clopping to stop once and for all! These people were going to pay no matter what Sharp had to do. 


He Would Stop At Nothing To Make Them Pay, But Something Happened

Wasting no time, Sharp rapidly put his plan into motion. He started to build his revenge house. The alleyway was narrow but he knew he could make it work. No carriage would ever go through there again. No loitering or obnoxious brawls, either. 

Source: TwistedSifter

Sharp detested traffic and never, ever wanted to hear it from his window again. However, he ran into a complication. What could possibly be the problem? Well, here’s the roadblock that Sharp had to deal with that would make matters even worse.


The Alleyway Was Public Property

The annoyance that Sharp encountered was that the alleyway was public property, so he would be unable to build on it. Of course, at this rate, absolutely nothing could stop Sharp from going through with his devious plan for revenge. 

Source: Jessie Tarbox Beals/The New York Historical Society/ Getty Images

Sharp was the chairperson on the council board which was perfect for him to leverage getting what he wanted. It just so happened that Sharp pulled off one of the biggest pranks in history, thus leaving his mark on the neighborhood for all time. 


Enter Liam’s Grandpa, Charlie Warren

Over 200 years later, Liam’s grandfather, Charlie Warren, noticed the auction listing for Lewis Sharp’s house. He knew right away that he had to buy it. Despite it being an unusual architectural oddity, Charlie didn’t care – that was the kind of thing he admired anyways.  

Source: OWN/ Youtube

For years, he had passed by the historic “Spite House” every day on his way to his work. Nothing could quite prepare him for what he witnessed inside. 


Charlie Was Unprepared For What Was Inside The House

Many house flippers would inform their potential buyer or client that redecorating and fixing old homes can eat away at your savings, and also be a huge burden. It’s time-consuming work and those types of projects are complicated and often come with a lot of stress. 

Source: Buildpix Construction Photography Avalon/ Getty Images

Charlie was already fully aware of these facts, yet still decided to go ahead and buy the “Spite House” on a whim. However, he wasn’t prepared for what was to follow in the purchase of this home. Charlie was aged and hoped that he would finish the project in time.


Charlie’s Unfulfilled Dream

Charlie was 60 years old when he had become so infatuated with the “Spite House” that he made the snap decision to continue investing his savings into it. He’d even kept it a secret from his relatives and planned to do the renovations by himself, but he was too optimistic about his health. 

Source: Armstrong Roberts Classicstock/ Getty Images

Six months had gone by and Charlie’s eyesight was failing him. He was forced to be put into a care facility. The skinny house would continue to wither away untouched for another 10 years, until his passing.


Smart Renovation Decisions Made By Liam

Liam had done a marvelous job of highlighting the original and unique elements of the house, leaving the brick walls and wooden floors unchanged. Other areas, however, did receive some specialized care. 


To make the house more space-efficient, Liam altered some aspects of the house to be aligned with that idea. He moved the heating and cooling system to the small attic space and installed space-saving cabinets to accommodate a water heater and also a stacked washer-dryer unit. It really sounds like Liam knew exactly what he was doing!


A Distinctive Feel Was Alive In The “Spite House”

Among being an already historically fascinating landmark, the house also embodied an authentic 1800s quality, while also being reminiscent of a ship’s cabin. This was a concept that sparked an idea within Liam.

Source: TwistedSifter

The house was so similar to the cabin of a ship that Liam thought about renting the house out to people who are about to go on an ocean cruise. Living in such a tiny and narrow space might allow people to adjust to being in such small quarters. 


The Final Result Was A Magnificent Achievement

Liam certainly proved everybody who doubted him from the beginning of this journey, wrong. He had dedicated himself to redecorating and renovating his beloved grandfather’s house, while also ensuring that it accurately resembled the time period it was originally built. 


Not only did Liam achieve his mission of dutifully honoring his grandfather and his unfinished plans in the best way, but he also added a bit more magic to the town overall. Liam’s achievement is something that many people wouldn’t even have to time, energy, or funds to carry out.


The House That Spite Built Turned Into A Significant Monument

The house turned into a massive success for the town and its residents couldn’t possibly love it more. Liam thoroughly enjoyed bringing people inside his quaint and humble abode before selling it. Many people expressed their amazement, and the house obviously elicited such a reaction. 

Source: Kristin LaFratta

The “Spite House” has become somewhat of a tourist attraction today. There are even memorabilia on the walls such as napkins and cards that show old scenes of the town. 

Lewis Sharp’s plan to divert the traffic was unparalleled. The house he built was only 10 feet wide (1,165 square feet spread over two stories) and was formed using the adjacent houses’ walls.