My Top 10 Unique Historic Properties (I’ve Seen) in the Mid-Atlantic!

Today, Historic House Blog is passing two milestones!  This is our 150th article and we just got our 1,000th  “Like” on Facebook.  In light of this, I am feeling lucky and I guess a bit nostalgic.  I also just returned from Fair Haven, Connecticut, where our team from the University of Delaware’s Center for Historic […]

170-Acre Country Estate Known As “Poplar Springs” To Be Auctioned (67 Photos!)

I just stumbled across an amazing country house estate that will be auctioned next month!  Located just 50 miles south of Washington DC, and set on more than 170 acres of Virginia’s finest hunt country, this property — now known as “Poplar Springs” — will be sold at public auction on Wednesday, November 6 at […]

What Do You Call It? . . . “Carpenters Marks”

Last fall, while documenting the attic of an 18th century house in Delaware, I got really excited when I spotted some carpenter’s marks carved on a set of 18th century rafters.   It had been awhile since I had seen any.  After discussing their purpose with my colleagues, I got to wondering just how common-knowledge […]

Hubka’s “Big House, Little House, Back House, Barn” Examines New England’s Historic Connected Farms

In Thomas Hubka’s Big House, Little House, Back House, Barn, he studies the phenomenon of the connected farm landscape of northern New England in the 19th century. Published in 1984, Hubka’s work was on the forefront of defining and expanding the field of vernacular studies. In Big House, Little House, Back House, Barn, Hubka examines […]

Book Review: Abbott Lowell Cummings’ “Framed Houses of Massachusetts Bay, 1625-1725”

Published in 1979, The Framed Houses of Massachusetts Bay, 1625-1725 was a giant contribution to the study of vernacular architecture, and it remains a foundational reference work for scholars of colonial architecture in Massachusetts and beyond. Focusing on the “first period” of settlement, from roughly 1620-1720, Cummings’ excellent work is an encyclopedic and systematic evaluation of […]

Historic Style Spotlight: The Craftsman Bungalow

When it comes to admiring old houses, I tend to favor rustic, 200-year old post & beam structures.  Yet some of my favorite historic houses are much more modern:  Craftsman-style bungalows.  This article will highlight the history & characteristics of this beautiful architectural style.

McDonald’s + Historic Preservationists= Circa 1795 Georgian-style Burger Joint (UPDATE)

So, this really exists.  An 18th century farmhouse (dating to 1795) that is now a McDonald’s restaurant on Long Island in NY.

Rare & Impressive ‘Early Period’ House (ca 1700) offered For Sale in Gloucester, MA (12 pics)

Even among historic house lovers, I am probably one of the few crazies who would actually love to live in a rustic 17th- or early 18th-century home.  An old “New Englander” would be especially nice, with creaky wide-board floors, exposed beams, and wood-paneled walls.  I can picture myself enjoying Thanksgiving dinner with my family, gathered […]

Historic Style Spotlight: Georgian Architecture

Georgian architecture was the dominant style of 18th century America.  This style is called Georgian because it was dominant from approximately the reign of King George I who ascended the throne in 1711, until the end of the American Revolution (King George III).  By the early 1700s, English colonies in America were a bit more […]

Oops, My Historic House Has A … Swastika???

This one is, well,  just a tad unique.  In 1976, a black couple — Donald & Thelma Smith — bought a beautiful mansion (circa 1912) in the historic Hill District of Pittsburgh.  While doing some renovations a few years later, some exterior wood was removed from the facade to reveal — surprise, surprise — a […]