Archive for the ‘McKim Mead and White’ Category

In honor of the Looking Forward Symposium tomorrow, I thought today’s Fantasy should be a continuation of the Bristol theme from Wednesday  with a post on my Favorite House in Bristol.  Sadly, I was never able to see it in person, due to its destruction in 1962, but it’s still famous among historians and architecture enthusiasts to this day.

I present to you, the William G. Low House.  A huge, sweeping single gable Shingle style home, built in 1886-1887 by McKim, Mead & White for William G. Low. Architectural Historian Vincent Scully once said that the Low house was “at once the climax and the conclusion” for Charles Follen McKim because of evolution in the firm, which tended towards the more classical leanings of Stanford White after the Low house and until his murder in 1906.  Though not well know in its own day, the Low house has since come to be known as one of the best examples of the Shingle style, and perhaps the one that bests embodies the basic tenets of the Shingle style, in other words, a return to a more organic style (far less ornamented than the previous stick and other highly ornamented styles) that was meant to look as if the building had evolved to that state over time rather than having been built as one massive structure.

Luckily the Low House was documented by HABS before it was unceremoniously burned in 1962.

The photo below is from the blog Construction 53

The photos below are from David Boucher’s blog and they are color pictures taken in the 60’s.

The last batch of photos come from the Historic American Buildings Survey

Hope you enjoyed your glimpse of this lost treasure. I may feel a small twinge every time I see it, but I still feel it is worth sharing! Perhaps it will inspire one of my wonderful readers to save an endangered structure dear to them.

Have a great weekend


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