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Matthew Lowber House

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1774. 1980 moved and restored. East side of Main St. N.(U.S. 113A), Magnolia
  • Matthew Lowber House (Delaware Division of Historical & Cultural Affairs, Dover, Del.)

For seventy-one years this three-bay, hall-and-parlor brick house stood alone at the crossroads where Magnolia (pop. 226) later grew. Its construction date appears in glazed headers in the gable, along with Lowber's initials. Frame wings were eventually added and the house was painted white. In the 1960s, archivist Leon deValinger heard that the “White House” was to be demolished for a gas station. Peeping through the windows, he saw some of the finest colonial paneling in Delaware, a fireplace with classical surround, and an unusual winder stair approached by four free-standing steps with elaborate banister (somewhat like Aspendale's, KT1). He decided to launch a campaign of preservation—what turned, ultimately, into a comedy of errors. The state bought the house only to give it to a local fire company that then moved it 100 yards and cut down the two colossal sycamore trees in the yard (planted 1786 and 1823).

Elsewhere in Magnolia, on Main Street South is a prominent late-nineteenth-century Queen Anne house, Lindale, with turrets and wide porches.

Writing Credits

W. Barksdale Maynard


What's Nearby


W. Barksdale Maynard, "Matthew Lowber House", [Magnolia, 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, 237-238.

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