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57 Hancock Street

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1870–1874, William Washburn.
  • 57 Hancock Street (Peter Vanderwarker or Antonina Smith)

Behind the Massachusetts Statehouse (BH2) stands one of the most unusual houses on Beacon Hill. Erected between 1870 and 1874 for Charles Roberts, the brick house with sandstone trim exhibits stylistic features of the Egyptian Revival, though constructed long after that style's popularity. Built as a boardinghouse and ideally sited for the transient legislators, it originally faced the Beacon Hill water reservoir. The architect, William Washburn, specialized in hotel design, including the Revere House (1840s) and the Cattle Fair Hotel (early 1850s) in Brighton (both demolished), though his other work suggested none of the fanciful character of this Hancock Street building, as seen in the high and elaborate mansard roof.

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan


What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "57 Hancock Street", [Boston, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Massachusetts

Buildings of Massachusetts: Metropolitan Boston, Keith N. Morgan, with Richard M. Candee, Naomi Miller, Roger G. Reed, and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009, 113-113.

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