The Fordney house began as a late Federal side-hall house. In 1870 the house was extensively revamped into the Italianate mode. Heavy projecting pediments were added over the two first-story windows and the entrances; above, cornices project over the second-floor windows. The roof's cornice acquired appropriate paired brackets, a cupola was added, and a two-story porch was built onto the side. Because the house is located on a hill, a half basement is revealed at the front, and the entrance is approached by a long flight of stone steps.
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