Charles G. Loring House // 1881-2013

Architectural losses are numerous in cities and towns all over New England, but few evoke such sadness for me than the demolition of the Charles G. Loring House of Beverly. The house was built as a summer cottage in 1881 for Charles G. Loring (1828-1902) on family land, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, perched high on a cliff. Loring hired architect William Ralph Emerson to design the home, which was perfectly harmonious in its siting and design with the rugged landscape it sat upon. William Ralph Emerson (1833-1917) was a leading architect credited with originating and popularizing what came to be known as the Shingle Style of architecture. The man who coined that term, Vincent Scully, called the Loring House “the very best of all the houses along this coast and considers that it “may well be the finest surviving example of the Shingle Style“. In 2012, the property was sold by heirs of the Loring Family to Helen Greiner, a co-founder of iRobot, the company best known for its robotic vacuum cleaner Roomba. She proposed a plan to demolish portions of the house, which according to the local Historical Commission, would be “no different from demolition” and completely destroy the architectural integrity and significance of the home. A one year delay was enacted on the property, but it was razed soon after the delay was over.

6 thoughts on “Charles G. Loring House // 1881-2013

  1. Dan Sears March 14, 2021 / 1:41 pm

    You neglected to mention another house @ 431 Hale Street.
    Now it is part of Landmark School


  2. Pamela Hartford December 6, 2022 / 3:03 pm

    fyi, 441 Hale was the Charles Greeley Loring house built by Emerson and demolished in 2013. It did not have an Olmsted designed landscape; the second owner of the house hired Litttle & Brown to design a small formal garden within the landscape. 569 Hale is where Olmsted Sr designed a landscape for another, much less well known and simpler, stucco faced house by Emerson for William C Loring, built in 1888. This house partially burned and is now a one story house. Myths about Olmsted and his sucessors abound, but can be factually checked by consulting the Master List of Design Projects by the Olmsted Firm, 1857-1979. (second edition, 2008)


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