While there is so much that is favorable to be said concerning the "old Colonial" style it is but fair that we should consider the unfavorable statements also and Desmond and Croly close the chapter on "The Colonial residence" thus: "At the time the colonial style prevailed it was admirable because it was safe; but in view of the immensely richer materials and larger opportunities which architects of the present time have at their disposal, they cannot afford to accept the colonial tradition too seriously. Both as regards outside and in, the excellence of the colonial dwellings depended on their decorous and unobtrusive character. They aimed studiously at under-state-ment. Their owners were people of taste, in whom the ideal of respectability was still fortunately allied with some notion of good form, and who would not for the world do anything to violate the prevalent proprieties. But it lacked structural and functional character; its range of expression was extremely limited. It is associated somehow with a tea table respectability, an old maidenly reserve and propriety; it is quaint and stiff and charming, but it lacks the richer tones, the deeper harmonies, the grander style of some French and Italian models. It remains, nevertheless, one of the best sources from which to derive the forms of a modest and inexpensive modern dwelling, for its designs are simple, its material cheap, and the character of its expression adapted to the houses of quiet people of good taste without much originality."*
THE "OLD MANSE," CONCORD, MASS. Home of Hawthorne and Emerson.
What might be called the decadence of the colonial style of architecture, or the transitional period, began in the early part of the nineteenth century. The White House is among the last and best known examples of pure Colonial. The times were revolutionary in more senses than one. New social and economic forces were at work. The people were trying experiments in government and business. The condition of the country was unsettled. Houses, especially on the borderlands, were temporary structures. The standard of handicraft was lowered. It seemed necessary to build quickly rather than well.
*"Stately Homes in America".
A COLONIAL COUNTRY DWELLING.
The Comfortable New England Farm Type Photograph by E. Q. Sylvester.
COLONIAL HOUSE, NORWALL. MASS.
After 1825 domestic architecture ceased to be colonial. The use of classic forms was revived and led to the making of wooden parthenons for public buildings and for a dwelling house a Doric or Ionic temple. The rapidity with which one kind of architecture followed another was remarkable. The classic forms were succeeded by the use of French and Italian models. The stately mansion in the Greek was followed by the picturesque villa. Many of these dwellings were built along the Hudson about the middle of the nineteenth century. This century marks the development of the city house. There was a great deal of indiscriminate imitation of Old World forms. The French villas were succeeded by Italian ones. The Gothic was intro duced in ecclesiastical buildings, such as Trinity and St. George's churches in New York City, about 1850. The Romanesque revival began in 1877 with the completion of Trinity church in Boston and deserves mention because it is associated with the name of Richardson, one of America's best architects.
CRAIGIE HOUSE, CAMBRIDGE, MASS.
Headquarters of Washington and Home of Longfellow. An Example of New England Colonial House.
THE WHITE HOUSE, SOUTH FRONT.
Now we have the country house, the city residence, and the suburban dwelling, each with its characteristics strongly marked. Various localities have also their distinctive types. Root says: "In the growth of their plans Western city houses have tended also toward greater enlargement and importance of the living and dining rooms at the expense of the parlor and reception rooms."*
NORTH FRONT OF THE WHITE HOUSE.