Tour historical homes in Worcester and Somerset Counties during this year's Maryland House & Garden Pilgrimage on Saturday, May 4 from 10 am to 5 pm.
TEACKLE MANSION (NR) – 1802-1804, 1818-1819
Littleton Dennis Teackle, a young entrepreneur from Accomac, Virginia, created this imposing gable-front mansion with many innovative features such as mirrored windows in the drawing room, an up-to-date (for its time) “steam machine” in the kitchen and adjacent to the master bedroom “two dressing closets, a fireplace in each” and between the closets was a “ bathroom laid in marble.
The first floor rooms, with their 1820 colors on display, are open to visitors. Walk in the Teackles’ footsteps throughout a house that reflects the style and taste of a well-to-do family of three in 1820.
WEST MARKET STREET
The Samuel Gunn House, more recently known as the Phillips House, stands on Market and Church Streets in the center of town. Distinguished as one of the oldest and perhaps best preserved of the 18th century town dwellings in the county, the side hall/double-pile frame house boasts intact rooms with superior late Georgian-style finishes.
Outstanding on the first floor is the stair, which has turned balusters and bulbous newel post topped with a distinctive cap trimmed with delicate Wall-of-Troy bed molding. Highlighting the stringer is a delicate scroll decoration that was common to stair construction of the period. Also noteworthy is the molded arch with a center keystone that visually divides the front and back halls. The stair hall is finished with raised–panel wainscoting, molded baseboard and a decorative cornice. The southeast and northwest parlors are finished in the best 18th century traditions, with complex raised-panel hearth over-mantles and raised-panel wainscoting. Trimming the perimeter of the Southeast Parlor is a decorative hand carved cornice. Attached to the west gable end of the house is an early 19th century (c. 1825), two-story hyphen, which was constructed to connect the Main Block to an 18th century kitchen.
The most noteworthy detail of the hyphen is the exterior drilled cornice, common to structures of this period, which imitates a classical swag motif. The hyphen is now used as a modern kitchen. The original kitchen was torn down in the 1930s, but has recently been reconstructed on its original foundation following early records and photographs. Behind the house is a formal boxwood garden with outbuildings.
Built atop a prominent high point on the south side of Snow Hill, the Mumford House has long been considered one of the oldest houses in town and certainly one of the most unusual. The exterior retains portions of its original beaded weatherboards.
Lighting the first floor rooms are a combination of twelve-over-twelve and nine-over-nine sash windows. Significant survivals of the home include an early nineteenth century stair in the northeast corner, chair rail moldings, raised six-panel doors and wrought-iron hardware. By 1860, the principal façade of the house had been changed with the construction of a two-story porch, which changed the orientation of the house from north to east. It is also known as the James Martin House, the original owner.
Framed by a beautiful landscape of cypress trees and tidal marsh, Beverly is a handsome five-bay, two-story Flemish bond brick dwelling overlooking the winding Pocomoke River. The manor house, (c. 1774) was built by a wealthy landowner and attorney, Littleton Dennis. It has an original two-story frame kitchen wing and hyphen filled with family memorabilia and sporting collections. Important features of the second floor fenestration are Palladian-style windows in the center bays on both sides.
About 1820, a Greek revival portico was added to the land side of the house. There is a perch on the roof used as a lookout for the Underground Railway. Although the house was constructed later, the design of the interior is early Georgian. The parlor, with fluted pilasters flanking the fireplace, is the only fully paneled 18th century room to survive in Worcester County. The other two downstairs rooms have paneling beneath the chair rail and on the fireplace walls. The handsome stair rises on the river side from an enlarged portion of the hall. Iron grillwork, hand-fashioned, frames the exterior of the river door in an arch which still holds a lantern once used to guide the river traffic. The railings extending from this arch on each side of marble steps came from Europe as ships’ ballast. On the grounds immediately surrounding the house are the original brick ice house and the family cemetery.
PHOENIX CHURCH ROAD
Watkins Point Farm is one of the most significant architectural survivals in southern Somerset County. The Greek revival dwelling is an important example of a gable-front transverse hall house. The attached 18th century one-room plan sawn-log house with remnants of a raised panel interior end wall is the only known structure of its type in Somerset County. The present owners have transformed this important “stepped” or telescope-type house from an abandoned derelict to the remarkable restoration you see today.
Beautifully appointed with period furniture and appropriate colors, the house welcomes friends and tourists alike from the moment they enter the front door, stroll through the various rooms and glimpse the rear sitting area which was once the sawn log house. From the back of the house, one may look across the marsh and see Virginia.
This distinctive two-story, gable-front house is one of the finest Federal/Greek Revival frame dwellings on the lower Eastern Shore. Covered with original beaded weatherboards, the transverse hall-plan house was restored by the Somerset County Historical Trust in 1996-2002. As part of the restoration the Trust recreated the Greek revival entrance portico, and engaged in rigorous research and restorative methods that revitalized this fine dwelling that formerly stood on Somerset Avenue.
The first floor interior is enhanced with a mahogany and tiger-maple stair railing, restored tiger-maple painted doors and period locks. Beautiful antiques of the period and hand-painted floor cloths are just a few of the appointments added by the present owners. In addition, they have added a third section to the house, a two-story kitchen wing and a pyramidal roofed outbuilding. A formal garden enhances the area immediately to the south, with a meadow just beyond.
This two-story Flemish bond brick house known for the past century as Hollyhurst is architecturally distinctive for its tall proportions, with an elevated foundation and parapet gables that distinguish the main house. The Federal-style house was lovingly revived in the early 1980s with the introduction of raised–panel woodwork. Later sections have been introduced in a four-sectioned design based on the stepped or “telescope” building tradition common to the Eastern Shore. Initially the land was part of the “More and Case It” land patent originally held by the Bozman family during the 17th century.
NOBLE FARM ROAD
Set within a sweeping vista of a Wicomico Creek landscape, the Bordeleau House was designed and built with clear references to America’s grand architectural tradition of Georgian design.
Built in 2002 on land where Thomas R. Shelton had cultivated grapevines since 1999, the two-and-a-half story brick dwelling has a center Palladian inspired pavilion that contains the main entrance. Tall chimney stacks frame the main block, which is extended to each side by lateral wings, open colonnades, and connected dependencies. Neoclassical and traditional finishes embellish the exterior and interiors. The name “Bordeleau,” meaning the “edge of water,” serves also as a reference to the historic Bordeaux winemaking region in France.
For more information, visit www.mhgp.org.
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