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Old House Style Guide

Listed below are several styles of old houses that you can find not just in your area, but all over the country. Each style has a picture of a local building and a description of special characteristics of the style.

Antebellum
Craftsman Bungalow
Colonial Revival
Greek Revival
Italianate
Neoclassical
Queen Anne
Tudor Revival


Antebellum
DESCRIPTION:
Most ante-bellum houses, meaning there were built before the outbreak of the Civil War, are the Federal style, as far as grand houses are concerned. They are generally symmetrical and boxy. They have center entrances on the front and rear, evenly spaced windows, gable roofs, and end chimneys. Two good examples in Mecklenburg County are Cedar Grove and Oaklawn.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Cedar Grove
W. T. Alexander House
Craftsman Bungalow
DESCRIPTION:
Bungalows were designed by the British for use in colonial India. Therefore, they are fashioned for warm weather. The roofs are hipped, thereby providing large attics for storage and for capturing the heat in the summer. Windows are grouped for greater sunlight and for greater ventilation. Bungalows have broad overhanging eaves, again to hold off the heat, as well as big porches to sit on in the evening. The Craftsman style, of which Bungalows are a subset, is characterized by simplicity and lack of the fanciful ornamentation one finds in Victorian homes. The Ratcliffe-Otterbourg House is an excellent local example of a Craftsman Bungalow.
See a labeled diagram of a Craftsman Bungalow house...
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Jennie Alexander Duplex
John Baxter Alexander House
Charlotte Fire Station No. 6
G. G. Galloway House
Moore-Golden House
Lambeth-Gosset House
Myers Park Streetcar Waiting Station
Ratcliffe-Otterbourg House
VanLandingham Estate
Colonial Revival
DESCRIPTION:
The Colonial Revival style became popular in the late nineteenth century. It draws its inspiration from Georgian Colonial architecture. Buildings of this type have strictly symmetrical facades and are usually rectangular in plan with no or minimum projections. Eaves have classical detailing. Windows are usually double-hung sash except when Palladian windows are used for accent. The first house of this type appeared in Newport, Rhode Island in 1885-86. C. C. Hook brought Colonial Revivalism to Charlotte in the 1890's. His oldest Colonial Revival style house is the Gautier-Gilchrist House on East Park Avenue in Dilworth.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Thad Adams House
William Belk House
Walter Brem House
C. C. Coddington House
Duke Mansion
Gautier-Gilchrist House
Frank R. McNinch House
Villalonga-Alexander House
Greek Revival
DESCRIPTION:
Greek Revival denotes rectangular buildings that have no arches, that depend upon large columns for support and ornamentation, and usually have smooth exterior wall surfaces. These buildings feature pediments attached to the basic boxy building. Many people would call any building with large columns Greek Revival. It features a stronger classical influence than antebellum, associations with American/Greek democracy.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Chairman Blake House
John Douglas House
Eumenean Hall (Davidson College)
Philanthropic Hall (Davidson College)
Hennigan Place
Italianate
DESCRIPTION:
Italianate houses draw their inspiration from villas in northern Italy. They are squarish in shape, have low-pitched hipped roofs, large windows, and broad overhanging eaves. An excellent local example would be Ingleside.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Berryhill House
Ingleside
McManaway House
Merchants & Farmers Bank Building
Neoclassical
DESCRIPTION:
This style became wildly popular at the end of the 1800s and the beginning of the 1900s. It was inspired by the mammoth White City of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Its most distinctive feature would be the lavish use of columns, usually Corinthian. Often features a classical pedimented entry with an entablature above the cornice line. Many Neoclassical buildings have windows grouped in twos or threes, with the main floor having semicircular arched windows. An excellent local example would be the Charlotte City Hall and the Mecklenburg County Courthouse, both on East Trade St.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Carnegie Library Building (Johnson C. Smith University)
Charlotte Fire Station No. 2
Gateway & Century Building
Hawley House
Hotel Charlotte
John Jamison House
Little Rock A.M.E. Zion Church
Saint Peter's Hospital
Queen Anne
DESCRIPTION:
This is one of the most popular high Victorian styles. Developed in Great Britain and displayed at the Centennial exposition in Philadelphia, the syle is characterized by great compexity. Irregular massive, great variety of windows and sheathing material, complex roofs, filigree -- these are just some of the qualities that make up Queen Anne. An excellent local example would by the J. P. Carr House. The Blakeney House is somewhat less ornate and would be called Country Queen Anne, meaning that it was fashioned by a local carpenter.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
N. S. Alexander House
James A. Blakeney House
John P. Carr House
Crutchfield-Bomar-Brem House
Rev. George H. Detwiler House
Liddell-McNinch House
Lyles-Sims House
Mallonee-Jones House
Overcarsh House
Tudor Revival
DESCRIPTION:
Tudor Revival derives its inspiration from early England. These buildings lavishly feature stone, ornate chimneys, half-timberings, thick walls, dark interiors, and steep rooflines. An excellent local example is the Hamilton-Jones House in Eastover.
LOCAL EXAMPLES:
Craig House
Earle Sumner Draper House
Hamilton Jones House
Morrocroft
Bishop Edwin D. Mouzon House