This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
I think I could take that old home of Sir Waltrr Ra-uuqb's, and by throwing a long low veranda along the front, and shifting the chimneys into the body of it, make a very respectable affair in the way of a country residence; but I would not build such a house to start with.
Your hints, in the way of alteration, are good, and if more people would act upon such hints, in improving substantial bodied old houses, which happen to stand on the places they buy, instead of tearing them away, and building something in their places not half as good, they would do better.
I once knew a company of gentlemen who bought a large form for the purpose of laying it out into lots of several acres each, for their own residences. On a part of it was an old, substantial, uncouth looking house, that had long been used as a tavern, and as they proposed changing the line of the highway which ran by it, the old tavern was thrown .back into the enclosure some distance. . It had trees around it, and some capabilities. One of the party chose this and the ground around it for his own, to which the rest, thinking it of no value, consented. He was a man of taste, and went to work, spending not half the money upon it, that the others did in getting up their cellar walls, and made it the most inviting and admired of the whole! Such things may be frequently done, if folks will only think so.