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Charles Head House

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1887, Shaw and Hunnewell. 412 Beacon St.

A variation on their somewhat more elaborate house at 266 Beacon Street (BB14) of the year before, 412 Beacon repeats the limestone material, four-bay width, and rusticated base but strips away the pilasters that had done much to organize and enrich the previous facade. As if to compensate for their omission, the lion masks of the frieze have been much enlarged and bearded with swagged garlands. Whether a parapet balustrade once existed is unknown, as the building was compromised by the addition of two further stories (and a basement entrance) in the 1920s. Despite its altered state, however, the Charles Head House demonstrates that, in Boston at least, restraint was not unknown even at the height of the Gilded Age.

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan


What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "Charles Head House", [Boston, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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