House with Pointed Architecture Style
A house plan in the Gothic pointed arch and architecture style.
¶ Very home-like and country-like in its appearance, and yet withal manifesting, too plainly to be misunderstood, that something more is intended than the mere expression of purpose, this design presents a favorable specimen of the development of pointed architecture as applied to country building. While the high-pitched roof exhibits the principles of the pointed arch style so strongly as to give the structure its name and character, it will be observed that many minor deviations are made in the details: these, founded on utility, are not sufficient to detract from the characteristic expression of lively aspiration communicated to the building as a mass, by its governing features, its roofs and gables. The deviations alluded to are the segmental window heads and the flat-roofed verandas, with their semicircular interbrackets.
¶ A residence built after this design would be suitable for the occupancy of a small family of considerable means, who wish to live in good style yet do not expect to give a great amount of entertainment.
¶ Whether we have made the proper arrangements for the above mentioned purpose or not will appear upon investigation of the plans. Beginning with the first floor, fig 48, we find a very neat veranda, eight feet wide, stretching around the greater portion of the front: from this the main hall A, 12 by 32 feet, is entered: this contains a fine wooden staircase, and affords a delightful assembling place for the home circle during long summer evenings; and it occurs to us that a piano would be a very appropriate part of its summer furniture. We are very partial to this elevation of the character of the hall, which in a vast number of houses is of little more importance than a mere passage or thoroughfare to the other rooms, including generally a stairway within its limits, and that sometimes an unsightly object.
¶ B is the drawing-room, 24 by 16 feet; C, the dining room. 21 by 16, provided with a good china closet. We think the drawing-room, as well as the appearance of the house, would be greatly improved by a veranda extended along its flank. D is the kitchen, 12 by 17 feet, with a sink at one side of the fireplace: it is also provided with a closet and private stairs. On the second floor, picture 49, we find three delightful bedrooms, F; L, M, and I are closets, and G and H small bedrooms. Snug bedrooms may be fitted up in the roof, lighted by the dormer windows.
¶ This is another example in which we would suggest the use of quarry stone with very little dressing, the joints being pointed up neatly on the exterior surface: we have seen excellent effects produced by the introduction of coloring matter into the mortar; when the color of the stone is very light, the pointing mortar may be of a dark lead color, but, on the contrary, if the stone be inclined to a somber cast, the joints should be white or nearly so.
¶ The roof being framed to rest on wall plates and ridge pieces, is designed to be boarded over and covered with slates cut diamond shape. Great care should be exercised in the construction of the dormers, and also of the main valleys; one of the greatest objections urged against roofs of irregular outline is their increased liability to get out of repair, and leak. We have already observed that copper is an excellent material for such valleys, large or small. For the longest valley in the roof before us, a strip of two-pound copper, twenty inches wide, well seamed and soldered at the cross joints, and carefully laid, will be found weather proof and lasting. The ridges may be covered with the same material: to effect this properly, a strip of wood, say one and a half inches thick, is run along the ridge, secured to the sheathing or rafters, extending at least one and a half inches above the surface of the slate; a ten-inch strip of copper is then laid over this and fastened with iron clasps, care being taken that the copper is not pierced. These clasps should be placed about two feet apart and fit tightly over the copper, so as to prevent its displacement by the wind.
¶ The slope of the veranda roof indicates that metallic covering for it is indispensable; for this, tin will be found much better than copper, and has the additional recommendation of being less expensive. We have already said enough on the subject of cellars to convince any one of their utility, even laying aside all consideration of their usefulness as a place of storage, etc. It will be observed, however, that the very moderate elevation given to the principal floor of this design would occasion considerable labor in the excavation of a cellar of the usual depth. Should it therefore not be desirable to have this underground storing room, it will still be necessary to remove the earth from beneath the flooring joists to the depth of at least two feet, and leave openings in the walls for the free admission of air, but so defended with gratings or screens as to exclude domestic animals.
¶ Erected in a substantial and workmanlike manner, with the walls and ceilings all done in hard finish, terracotta chimney caps, and copper valleys, this design will cost, in this vicinity, about $4OOO (1861 price), it being understood that every part of the work is executed in first-rate style.
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