You are here

Charles H. Murphy Sr. and Bertie Murphy House

-A A +A
1925–1926, Charles L. Thompson. 900 N. Madison Ave.

In 1907 then-banker Charles Murphy began selling his Arkansas holdings in order to amass land in northern Louisiana and southern Arkansas and establish a timber business. His investment paid off spectacularly when the tracts he had purchased became part of the famous Smackover oil field that helped put El Dorado at the center of the petroleum industry in the early 1920s. The success of the company he founded, Murphy Oil Corporation, was ensured by the development of a submersible oil rig and the establishment of plants to extract bromine from the salt water, which initially had only been a troublesome by-product of south Arkansas oil drilling.

Eschewing the grand and opulent statement, the Murphys commissioned this understated, comfortable design in Tudor Revival for their two-story dark red brick house trimmed with limestone. The house is sited relatively close to the street on a seven-acre lot. The ground-hugging front presents a modest image, for only the side and rear elevations reveal the full size of this broad and irregularly massed house. The intimately scaled, arched entrance is sheltered by a small gabled porch, while above a tall chimney and three gabled projections break the lines of the steep tile roof, which sweeps down to form low, overhanging eaves. All of the interior wood trim is of custom-harvested red gum, with an exquisitely carved alcoved staircase and living room mantel and Tudor-shaped arches gracing the library bookshelves.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Cyrus A. Sutherland with Gregory Herman, Claudia Shannon, Jean Sizemore Jeannie M. Whayne and Contributors
×

Data

What's Nearby

Citation

Cyrus A. Sutherland with Gregory Herman, Claudia Shannon, Jean Sizemore Jeannie M. Whayne and Contributors, "Charles H. Murphy Sr. and Bertie Murphy House", [El Dorado, Arkansas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/AR-01-UN9.

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Arkansas

Buildings of Arkansas, Cyrus A. Sutherland and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2018, 199-199.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,