A blog devoted to American Italianate architecture of the 19th century. This blog features architectural analyses of Italianate domestic buildings with images, and historical information. My plan is to show the varieties, regional vernacular of Italianate architecture.
Saturday, June 8, 2013
The Francis Bennett House, Baltimore, MD
The Francis Bennett House, Baltimore, MD. 1857
Continuing with other fine Anglo-Italianate homes around Mt. Vernon in Baltimore, I was struck by this seemingly dingy row house at 17 W. Mulberry. Built in 1857 for Francis W. Bennett, an auctioneer. It has recently been restored and is used as a hostel. The house follows the row house plan and is constructed out of what seems to be brownstone that is in desperate need of cleaning. Typical Anglo-Italianate features dominate the facade. We have the usual thick molding around the windows and door with a dentiled cornice and foliate brackets. The main door is arched with simple panels in the spandrels, and it is recessed with a paneled vestibule area. The cornice is irregularly large for a Baltimore house. Instead of having a row of small brackets between the frieze and the cornice, this house raises the cornice another level, inserting a second frieze that has a motif of panels surrounding a central bulls eye, a motif that is repeated over the windows. Thus the panel cornice with its thick, long brackets is superimposed upon a horizontal one, which is a particular eccentricity of this house. Some images of the interior, which balances period fixtures with inventive murals suitable to a hostel and music venue can be found here. The following images show some details.