Richmond-Herreshoff House // c.1803

Located on Hope Street, just south of the downtown area of Bristol, Rhode Island, this beautiful Federal-style home overlooks the water, and once oversaw a large ship-building empire. The home was built by Lemuel Clarke Richmond (1782-1876), possibly in response to his marriage to Hannah Gorham in 1803. Richmond was a wealthy whaler who owned nearly twenty ships, including the Empress, a Bristol-built bark. The Federal style home features a five-bay facade with central entry. A modest portico surrounds the door which has a fan light transom above. Oh, and there are some gorgeous 12-over-12 windows on the home, at the ground floor the windows have flared lintels above. The home was sold by Richmond in the early 1850s and rented out to Charles and Julia Ann Herreshoff, who resided there with their eight children! It was here where sons John and Nathanael overlooked the water as young boys and became consumed by the beauty of the ships that sailed by their front yard. The brothers later ran the internationally renowned Herreshoff Manufacturing Company, which occupied land all around the home (and was featured previously). The home was acquired by the family in the 1860s, and often changed hands within the family over the next decades until it was inherited by Norman F. Herreshoff. A collector of Americana, Norman Hcrreshoff completed a series of renovations to the family home, including remodeling of the kitchen to be “old-fashioned” and replacement of the front porch with the small Ionic portico which we see today. The home is owned by the Herreshoff Marine Museum, but has seen better days.

John Brown Herreshoff House // c.1870

John Brown Herreshoff, a fully-blind ship-builder, and later Founder and President of the Herreshoff Manufacturing Company in Bristol, built this house at the head of Burnside Street, overlooking his boat works (no pun intended). The home sits next to the stunning Codman Place mansion, featured previously, and takes architectural cues from its neighbor. The home is reported to have been built by J.B. Herreshoff, who despite being completely blind, developed his other senses to a high degree to overcome the handicap of sightlessness, and became renowned for his design skills in his ships. The home has a mansard roof with a central projecting entrance bay, capped with a steeply pitched roof, and a barrel-vaulted dormer and ocular window inset. While the house is now condo units, it retains its architectural integrity at the exterior.

Josiah Talbot House // 1835

Anyone that has followed this account for a while knows at least one thing, I LOVE Greek temple-front homes. Designed by famed architect, and Bristol-native, Russell Warren, this 2-story, 3-bay, gable-roof Greek Revival house is one of the finest in the state. Its facade has a pair of fluted Corinthian columns, set in antis (where the side walls extend to the front of the porch). A simple side-hall entrance is framed by heavy Doric pilasters, supporting a broad, plain entablature, making this such a head-turning Greek Revival home. The walls are sheathed with horizontal flush boarding at the facade to give a smoother look and clapboards on the side and rear. The home was built for Josiah Talbot, a sea captain. The house is excellently preserved to this day, almost 200 years later.

George H. Reynolds House // 1839

This two-story Greek Revival home was built in 1839 for George H. Reynolds (1809-1880), a descendant of Joseph Reynolds, who’s home was featured here previously. In 1836, George Reynolds worked as a blacksmith; by 1837 he sold shoes and groceries. By 1840, he was appointed postmaster. The side-hall home features corner pilasters and a gorgeous pedimented window in the gable end. The home was given a delicate entry portico in the latter half of the 19th century which immediately caught my attention.

Seth Paull House // 1880

Seth Paull (1840-1906), a lumber merchant whose warehouse and business were located at the foot of State Street downtown, began construction of this house in 1879. It is evident that he sought to showcase his lumber’s quality in his own home, as a testament to his business. This elaborate 2-1/2-story, hip-roofed, Second Empire house has a three-bay facade with a projecting central pavilion capped by an ogee gable roof. A two-story tower on the right corner, topped by conical roof with a copper finial, has elaborate brackets, diamond panels in wood, and a saw-tooth frieze. The home is well-preserved and sits on a large lot, set back from the street behind a row of trees. The lot was once larger, but was subdivided for housing to the north. The former Paull barn was repurposed as a separate home.

Dennis Doran House // 1891

Located just east of downtown Bristol, the Dennis Doran House stands as an excellent example of the Queen Anne style of architecture for a middle-class residence. The home was built in 1891 by Dennis Doran as his personal house. He worked as a carpenter and cabinet maker, and showcased his wood-working skills on this home. The asymmetrical facade, dominated by an octagonal corner tower, capped by a steep conical roof stands out, but is complemented by a complex hipped roof broken up by various jerkin-head and gable dormers at two tiers. The home is also clad in shingles of varied shapes to provide a complex texture.

Joseph Reynolds House // 1698

This three-story wood-frame house is one of the oldest buildings in Bristol and the oldest known three-story building in Rhode Island. The home was built by Joseph Reynolds (1679-1759), a patriarch in the Reynolds Family, who later built the Reynolds-DeWolf House I featured previously. The house is five bays wide and three deep with the roof extending lower to the rear, giving the house a classic New England saltbox appearance. Joseph built this house, and also operated a tannery and gristmill on his land. The home is nationally significant as during the ownership of the house by his son Joseph II, Marquis de Lafayette occupied the north parlor chamber. Lafayette was a general in the Continental Army and was responsible for the defense of Bristol and Warren from September 7 to 23, 1778 during failed military operations to drive the British from occupied Newport. The home was added onto and altered in 1790 to give it the current design, with Federal detailing. The home remained in the Reynolds Family until 1930.

Hannah Harris House // c.1772

This cute little Georgian home in Brookline was built around 1772 for Hannah Winchester Harris, a widow at the time. Hannah’s husband, Timothy died in 1772 and it appears the widow had this small gambrel-roofed home constructed sometime soon after. Ms. Harris died in 1805 and the home was occupied by a new family, who added the saltbox addition. The home is today owned by the Town of Brookline, who maintain the building through the Brookline Historical Society. the home sits on the boundary of the old Weld Estate.

Emile Coulon House // 1923

Built in 1923, this striking French Eclectic home is by far one of my favorites in Brookline! The home was built for Emile Coulon, a hotelier. Coulon was born in Le Mans, France and worked in several European hotels before moving to America, first settling in New York in 1901. Fluent in four languages, Coulon was also well-read and catered to the luxurious clientele many of the hotels he worked at. After one year in New York, he moved to Boston and started as a waiter at the Hotel Touraine. By 1912, he leased the Hotel Westminster and five years later, the Hotel Victoria. He later leased the Hotels Touraine, Lafayette and Vendome in the 1930s, in the midst of the Great Depression. Coulon was elected president of the Massachusetts Hotel Association. Emile and his wife lived in this French style home, likely designed with his French roots in mind, for just five years before they moved to a unit in the Vendome to be closer to his 24/7 job. He died in 1947 in his beloved Vendome apartment.

Bowditch Coachman’s House // c.1867

Located across Tappan Street from the former William Ingersoll Bowditch home, the former coachman’s house is the only lasting remnant of the once far-flung estate in Brookline. Built around 1867 as a residence for Michael Lynch, a laborer, who became the Bowditch coachman and lived in the house until his death. The Lynch family later acquired the property when the Bowditch estate was demolished and land subdivided. 224 Tappan Street is an exceptionally charming cottage with fanciful detailing, quite unlike any other home in its neighborhood.There is a projecting center entry with a small diamond pane window on either side and a gable roof. The facade of the house is common bond brick and the sides are sheathed in vertical boards. The saw tooth edged, board and batten siding that finishes the pediments, and the flat cut finials at the peak of both gables makes one think of Hansel and Gretel, and I am all for it!