Monday, April 21, 2014

Early Historic Harrison Ave Italianate Victorian hits the market

Looking beyond the remuddle one can see the elegant tower and two story bay window which are the signature of the Italian Villa style. This is a case where less is more and that porch needs to go.
People drive by this home everyday without notice. One could be easily fooled into believing this was just another late 1890's Victorian covered in a bad vinyl siding job.

However that is not the case with this home, this home is an early home on the street . Most likely built between 1865 and 1870, this home was based on the  emerging Italianate Villa style. Instead of the clumsy Queen Anne porch  there would have been no porch exposing the two story double bay window to street view. A simple set of stone steps would have lead to a single or perhaps double door with transom. Over that would have been an elegant but simple porch most likely supported by Brackets on either side. This home no doubt sat on a fair amount of land and was one of a handful of "gentleman's farms' as they were known in the day.  A comfortable house in what might soon be called the 'suburbs' where one could grow some grapes and other small crops and live the idyllic country life.
This grand confection of leaded glass was no doubt a part of the 1895 remodel. The suspended ceiling and vinyl floor needs to go however

By the 1890's this house would have appeared dated and out of style and as the Victorians were known to do it would have been updated to the more "modern' Victorian style of the day. The Queen Anne porch was added , a new leaded glass door and old fashioned cast iron fireplaces with their  gaudy gilded mirrors over them were removed for  new ones in wood with tile surrounds and gas inserts. If you look closely however you still see signs of the earlier house with the elaborate crown plaster and center medallions in the parlor and formal dining room.
Under that carpet are inlaid hardwood floors, the mantle and tile are part of the 1890 redo, the plaster ceiling medallion and crown molding are clearly part of the original 1895-70 structure.
This home is offered at 89,900.00 and you can see the listing here , While it has suffered  some remuddling indignities like the vinyl and paneling and suspended ceilings in some rooms, Key interior features like the many fireplaces are there.

One can easily see that this house is livable and one can comfortably 'camp out' while they restore this grand old house and entertain in this formal dining room.
This home could easily be restored to its 1895 period or a more enterprising restorer could take it back to its more historic 1865-70 roots. Either way its livable as is.

The paneling needs to go and the ceiling raised (bet the crown is under it). Part of the adventure of restoration is you may just find a treasure. look at that great mantle!
This  home sits just north of the Knox Hill Neighborhood and on the way to Westwood. Minutes o downtown and Findlay market.


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