Mansard Monday ~ Central Street Rowhouses

Mansard Monday ~ Central Street Rowhouses, Springfield, MA. This intact row of 33 Second Empire style rowhouses was built in phases between 1873 and 1883.

The construction began with the five westernmost houses, developed by local mason B. F. Farrar. Two years later, he added nine houses to the east. In 1882, the block was extended with nine houses erected by Parsons and Parks, local realtors, and ten houses built by H. B. Handy. These last are the houses visible in the photo. The Central Street Block offers an interesting example of Victorian masonry with black brick banding is used at the eastern end.

The Mansard roof form that turns an Italianate style house into a Second Empire style house comes from France and was typically called a “French roof” during the 19th century – when all things Parisian were in vogue.

Second Empire is one of 25 historic architectural styles described and illustrated in Chapter 2 of “Restoring Your Historic House, The Comprehensive Guide for Homeowners.”

Signed and personalized copies of the award-winning and bestselling 720-page hardcover book are available from the author in our online shop, YourHistoricHouse.com/shop/.

Want to learn more about historic house styles? “A Field Guide to American Houses” by Virginia McAlester is the classic volume on the subject. It is also available in our shop. Save on cost and shipping with our multi-book combo packs!

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