Constructed in 1904 for William A. Short and his wife, Sallie, the house is an exceptional example of Colonial Revival. Short moved from Mobile, Alabama, to Little Rock in 1885 to manage a branch of the Howell Cotton Company, and three years later he started his own business, W. A. Short and Company. His business prospered, and he opened branches in a number of nearby towns. In 1895 he entered into a partnership with Y. F. Harrington; in addition to cotton they invested heavily in timber and farming. The Short house, built on the slope of Crowley’s Ridge, the only hill for miles, is situated on a large sweeping lawn and accessed by a grand flight of stairs that gives a splendid sense of arrival. The two-and-a-half-story frame building has a symmetrical facade that is a drama of curves (the semicircular portico and the bay window above it) and angles (the polygonal bays at the corners of the second story). Tying it altogether is a wraparound porch, a prominent bracketed cornice, and a hipped roof. This house, one of several in Helena of Barber’s mail-order designs, was built by the Clem Brothers of Fordyce, who also may have built a number of the grander Helena houses at the turn of the twentieth century. During the early 1920s the cotton market failed, and Short was forced to sell the house. It later housed a funeral parlor and other enterprises; currently it is a bed-and-breakfast.
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Edwardian Inn (William A. and Sallie Short House)
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