Constructed prior to 1869, 438 Colchester Avenue is a two-story, two-by-two bay, dwelling clad in synthetic siding. The house is oriented toward the southeast with the gable-front façade facing Colchester Avenue. A double, shed roof dormer is present on the south elevation. There is a full width, one-story, hipped roof, enclosed porch on the front elevation. Sanborn Fire Insurance maps from the late 1880's up until 1978 identify 438 Colchester Avenue as a one and one-half story rectangular dwelling.

438 Colchester Avenue is listed on the 1869 Beers atlas map as "E. W. Chase." The 1870 census identified E. W. Chase as a fifty-one year old white male whose place of birth was New Hampshire. E. W. Chase appears to have led a prosperous life in Burlington according to newspaper articles describing the successes of his sash, door and blind factory. (1) Burlington city directories from 1865 to 1871 listed an E. W. Chase with the firm of Chase and Smith as having a house near Winooski Falls. From 1871-1872, the directory listed E. W. Chase with the firm of Chase and Smith as living in a house near the Winooski Bridge. A George W. Chase, an employee of Chase and Smith was also listed as having a house near the Winooski Bridge.

The 1890 Hopkins map of Burlington lists "Mrs. E" at 438 Colchester Avenue. From 1900-1902 the Burlington city directory identified Mrs. Louise Ladue, widow of Gabriel. Charles and Louise Ladue are shown in the 1905 Burlington city directory. Mrs. Louise Ladue is listed in 1910 Burlington city directory at 438 Colchester Avenue, while Charles Ladue appears to have moved to 434 Colchester Avenue.

The 1920 Burlington city directory identified Benjamin Boyd, an employee at the American Woolen Company. By 1930, Ira J. Paquette, a mechanic, resided at 438 Colchester Avenue. Ira J. Paquette remained in residence through 1940, although he was listed as a janitor at City Hall. (2)

(1) Historical Records Society. Index to the Burlington Free Press (Montpelier, Vermont: Historical Records Society, 1869-1870).

(2) Manning, H. A. Burlington, Winooski, Essex Junction Directory (Springfield, Massachusetts: H. A. Manning Company, 1940).