At Central Avenue and Nehoiden Street, center of town until the mid-1800's, is the house built in 1720 for Needham's first resident minister, the Rev. Mr. Jonathan Townsend. The East Militia Company left from this house to answer the Lexington alarm in 1775. The militia kept military supplies in the house during the Revolutionary War. Until 1821, it housed the first three ministers of the town, and, later, historian George Kuhn Clarke. The mansard roof was added in the 1850's.