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St. Francis Renewal Center (Samuel N. Trump House)

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Samuel N. Trump House
1886–1887, Louis Carter Baker Jr. and Elijah James Dallett, for Furness, Evans and Company. St. Patrick's Monastery, Prior Rd., south of Ardencroft
  • (Photograph by Matthew Aungst)

Motorists driving north on I-95 cannot miss the pointy, complex roofline of this house rising above the treetops. Philadelphia architects Baker and Dallett met in the office of Frank Furness and later practiced together (1888–1912). They undertook many Wilmington commissions, as Dallett's wife was a native. Nearly all their houses have been demolished. This one was for the owner of Trump Brothers Machine Company. It recalls, in several ways, Furness's Chalfont House, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania (c. 1884). The tall roof and corbeled chimneys still show a hint of the firm's signature style, despite many exterior alterations. Inside, the central hall contains a fireplace of granite and terra-cotta with a decorative, cast-iron fireback, and a spectacular stair rises three stories. An Irish order of Capuchins established St. Patrick's Monastery at this site, adding an Avondale-stone Friary (c. 1935). Father Thomas Pietrantonio has spent three decades rehabilitating the house, and he installed an upstairs chapel from architectural fragments.

Writing Credits

W. Barksdale Maynard


What's Nearby


W. Barksdale Maynard, "St. Francis Renewal Center (Samuel N. Trump House)", [Wilmington, Delaware], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Delaware

Buildings of Delaware, W. Barksdale Maynard. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2008, 41-41.

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