You are here

Robert P. Dodge House

-A A +A
1850–1853, Andrew Jackson Downing and Calvert Vaux. 1534 28th St. NW
  • Robert P. Dodge House

This is one of two Italian Villa houses designed by Downing and Vaux in the heights of Georgetown. The second house, designed for Dodge's brother, is nearby on 30th Street. Robert P. Dodge began his career as an engineer for the C & O Canal, later developing business interests with the Georgetown Gas Light Company and the Columbia Flour Mill.

Dodge commissioned the residence on the mid-nineteenth-century outskirts of Georgetown, an appropriately bucolic setting for a country house. An illustration of it appeared in Calvert Vaux's Villas and Cottages (1857). (It was designed for Robert P. Dodge, not Francis Dodge, as is described in Vaux's book.) The original plan featured a porch tower that rose above the roofline, with the rest of the house arranged asymmetrically around the tower. A veranda along the northeast side of the house abutted the porch tower; the library-bedroom block adjoined the other side of the tower.

Urbanization and changing tastes have altered the Dodge house. Its grounds have been hemmed in by more recent dwellings, and Neoclassical elements have overwhelmed the Italian villa design. The porch tower was shortened and enclosed and the northeast veranda replaced by a two-story porch of large square pillars. Italianate decorative details such as window hood molds and brackets have been removed. The major surviving feature is the ground-floor plan, although the interior decorative features have been modified as well to reflect the exterior alterations. Despite all this, the original design intentions can still be perceived.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee
×

Data

What's Nearby

Citation

Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee, "Robert P. Dodge House", [Washington, District of Columbia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/DC-01-GT18.

Print Source

Buildings of the District of Columbia, Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 409-410.

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.

, ,