As Bristol grew to be a dominant financial center in Rhode Island in the mid 19th century, prominent families there decided that their loved ones (and later themselves) needed a place of beauty to rest eternally. In 1855, descendants of Levi DeWolf, of the infamous slave-trading family, donated 22-acres of land for use as a cemetery. The old Levi DeWolf home remains fronting Hope Street, featured previously as the Reynolds-DeWolf House. It is a fine example of the mid-19th century rural cemetery movement, with winding lanes and paths. The landscape was designed by Niles Bierragaard Schubarth, who had done similar work at other Rhode Island cemeteries. Upon the opening of Juniper Hill, many families relocated their loved ones from other cemeteries in town here, so the families could be interred nearby each-other. The cemetery has three main structures; a gateway, the gate lodge, and a chapel/receiving tomb. The gate is a massive stone archway set at the entry to the cemetery, and was built in 1876 by the Smith Granite Company of Westerly, R.I. The Gate Lodge was built years earlier is located at the side of the entry into the grounds, and is a stone Victorian Gothic Revival building, designed by Providence architect Clifton A. Hall and constructed of granite quarried on the site during construction of the landscape. Yards away, the charming Amory Chapel and Receiving Tomb, built in 1913, is a 1-story stuccoed structure with a tile roof, designed by the firm of Angell & Swift of Providence. The small chapel stands out as it is a rare example of the Spanish Revival style, but has seen better days, and is apparently being used as a tool shed.
The area of Nantasket Beach in Hull was in the late 19th century, a hotbed of taverns, thievery, and brothels. To counter this, the Metropolitan Park Commission of Greater Boston acquired about 25 acres at Nantasket, which included roughly one mile of shoreline extending north from Atlantic Hill in 1900. The initial appropriations provided for only minimal facilities, such as a bathhouse and a few incidental buildings, one of which was a waiting room for those arriving or departing from the new railroad station (since demolished) at the beach. The MPC hired the Olmsted Brothers landscape architects to design the paths and landscaping for the new park, and they worked with architects Stickney & Austin who designed many of the early buildings. Stickney & Austin designed this stucco-clad building with clock tower to provide shelter from the elements and summer sun for visitors of the reservation. The building is a blending of the Arts and Crafts and Spanish Revival styles, both common at the beginning of the 20th century. The building now houses the Paragon Park Museum, after they relocated the Paragon Park Carousel next door to this building.
Located across the street from Larz Anderson Park and the former Larz Anderson Estate, this stunning Spanish Revival home, built in 1927, was constructed as a guest house for visitors of Larz and Isabel Anderson. Between 1925-29 the Andersons constructed three guest houses outside the estate on Goddard Avenue. The designs were intended to call to mind places the Anderson’s had visited. “Puddingstone”, was named for a nearby outcropping of puddingstone on the Anderson estate, and was modeled after a house the couple had seen in Santa Monica, California. The Andersons used the buildings occasionally as guesthouses for relatives or friends who came for long stays at Weld, especially when Larz and Isabel were not in residence there. But for the most part, the houses remained empty and it was only after Larz’s death in 1937 that Isabel disposed of them. She donated them to Boston University for use as the Brookline Campus, who in turn, sold them off as private residences years later. Built in a Spanish Colonial style, it features a red terra cotta tile roof, adobe-colored stucco walls, and a center entrance framed by an elaborate cast stone surround in a Spanish Baroque style. To the right of the front door, a clathri (grid/lattice in architecture) over a window can be found in a blind arch.
Located in South Brookline, the former estate of Anna Sears stands high on a hill, surrounded by later buildings of the ever-growing Dexter Southfield School. The Sears Estate was built for Anna Sears, a widow who was married to the late Richard Sears, a photographer. The home was designed in 1922 by Walter Kirby as part of a 49-acre estate which, in addition to the main house, included three guest cottages, garages, and a barn. The estate remained a private residence until 1945, when it became a seminary for the Catholic Foreign Mission Society of America. The campus was acquired by the Dexter Southfield School in the 1960s who relocated from the Cottage Farm area of Brookline. The stuccoed exterior, red tile roof, door surround, balconies and iron window grilles and sconces are characteristic of the Spanish Revival style.
Residential architecture of the early decades of the 20th century is among my favorites as the Tudor Revival movement took off and was sometimes mixed with other revival styles at the time, creating really unique homes. The Glacy House in South Brookline, MA was built in 1930 as one of the earlier homes in the Walnut Hill development. It was likely designed and built by Walter L. Fernandez, a contractor who appears to have design-built a handful of spec homes to help get the neighborhood’s development going in the early stages. This home was originally occupied by George and Mary Glacy. George later worked as Vice President of the Boston & Maine Railroad, though he later got into legal trouble for hiring companies for railroad projects where he had financial interests, becoming indicted in an antitrust case by a Federal grand jury. The home features a first floor constructed of stone and brick with half-timbering on the floor above. The building is topped by a terracotta red tile roof, which is fairly uncommon for the region.
Fairfield in the early 20th century began to shift as a suburban town with neighborhoods of large homes in planned districts. The proliferation of the personal automobile led to the “suburbanization” past streetcar suburbs closer to downtowns. Howard Greeley Lee (1893-1965) worked as Vice President of the Lee Brothers Furniture Co. based out of nearby Bridgeport. The company clearly did well as Howard had this large home built in the fairly uncommon (in New England) Spanish Revival style. It features a red tile roof, stuccoed siding, metal casement windows, and arched windows and front door, all commonly found in the style.
A happy blending of Mission, Colonial Revival and Shingle Styles for the Maine coastal community of Kennebunkport, the St. Martha’s Catholic Church exemplifies the charm of this town. The church is sited on a corner lot with a belfry at its corner. The nave features a central entry with Colonial pilasters and pediment above the second floor windows. The roofline is shaped with Mission style parapet walls and arched openings at the tower, showcasing the Spanish influence in the design. The entire building is wrapped with cedar shingles, as a nod to the coastal summer resort it resides. The church operated here until the mid-late 20th century when it was converted to an art gallery, and now is home to condos.
This mansion was built in 1918 for William and Bessie Ellery and is located on Fisher Avenue in Brookline. Mr. Ellery was direct descendant of William Ellery, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and worked as a wool dealer and made a fortune in Boston. During WWI, Ellery served as colonel in the Quartermaster Corps and in WWII, he served as a wool appraiser for the Department of Agriculture. Before all this, he and his wife sought an escape from the ills of the city by building a home in the streetcar suburb of Fisher Hill, to get away from Downtown Boston. The couple hired Edward Nichols, an architect who has fallen so under the radar, I have not been able to locate much about him! He designed this stunning stuccoed Spanish Revival mansion that features a large entry with central pergola, a rounded arch veranda at the second floor, and a hipped tile roof with dormers. The interior is pretty great too from the listing photos!!
A collection of seven picturesque Spanish style triple-deckers on Rawson Road provide density while adding to the idillic quality of Aspinwall Hill. Developed in 1913, the homes were developed by Alexander C. Chisholm, who owned the parcels. Chisholm was a Brookline real estate developer and builder who resided at nearby and maintained an office on Beacon Street. His advertisement in the town’s 1913 directory noted he offered “apartment houses for sale and to-let”. Before entering the real estate market in Brookline, Chisholm was known for the design and construction of apartment houses in Dorchester and Roxbury. The Spanish Revival buildings are all wood frame and clad with stucco. Sitting upon raised fieldstone foundations, the houses feature porches, bracketed hoods over entrances and windows, and decorative parapets, all common in Spanish revival architecture.
A rarity in Massachusetts, this Spanish Revival style home stands out among the large homes of Brookline. Located at 63 Powell Street in North Brookline, this home was built in 1905 for Paul Hunt, who is most famous for his father and uncle. Paul Hunt was the son of William Morris Hunt, a leading painter of Boston in the 19th century and the nephew of Richard Morris Hunt, one of the most prolific American architects of all time. Paul Hunt became a developer and contractor of sorts in Bar Harbor, Maine, where his mother had a summer cottage.
This house can be classified as Spanish Revival as it is a has a stucco exterior, low-pitched roof of terra-cotta tiles, and rounded arched openings. You can see that on the rightmost side of the home on the second floor, a sleeping porch appears to have been enclosed. Sleeping porches were very common in early 20th century where screened balconies would allow residents to sleep outside, for two main reasons. First, air-conditioning was not available at the time and summer nights would get very hot, and second, it was believed that Tuberculosis and other lung-related illnesses could be cured or staved by providing fresh air.