Italianate Architecture

Between 1840-1885 a new trend started as local residents began to build homes reflecting elements of style from Italy. This was an unusual choice for this area because many elements of the Italianate style seem incompatible with our climate. Houses had low pitched roofs with large overhangs and tall narrow windows, features that were designed to ward off the strong sun of southern Italy. Never the less many of thelocal streets are graced with fine examples of houses built in the Italian tradition. They are sided with bricks, clapboards and shiplap. Some have towers. In this style towers are usually square. As mentioned the windows tend to be tall and narrow but they are still multi-lighted and double hung. Something else that is new in this era is the addition of small porches or overhangs to the area of the front door . Buildings in this style may be symmetrical or not.

italianate-lgThis style is highly decorative. The frieze band we described in Greek Revival now often features windows. Just under the edge of the roof or trimming the edge of the porch overhang, we find brackets. They are L shaped, sometimes quite ornate and are strictly ornamental. They are found on roof lines throughout the area. This style introduced quoins comprised of staggered blocks up the entire length of each corner. Indeed, the name comes from the French for corner.