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Farnum Farm

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1820s or 1830s with later porch and outbuildings. 96 Farnum Rd. (at Cooper Rd.)

This Currier and Ives image of the idealized early American farmstead is completed by a handsome complement of mostly later nineteenth-century outbuildings set out in clustered alignment to the house, a picket fence, and a splendid row of mature maples in front (which obscures the house in summer). Although built roughly a quarter of a century later, it is, like the Manton-Hunt-Farnum farmhouse ( GL19), a simple gabled box, fronted by a similar elevation in the Federal style. This house, however, has a more distinctly vernacular quality. Instead of placement precisely in accord with an abstract symmetrical scheme, here the paired windows on either side of the center door are slightly adjusted to more functional considerations. Instead of symmetrical window placement in the side elevations, here asymmetries of use determine the arrangement of a pair of openings to light the parlor, to the front, while a single opening suffices for the smaller, less ceremonial room to the rear. Instead of the classical embellishment of the pedimented door frame, here it is simply handled with a basic transom, and a bit askew of the “center” chimney. The cornice is also plainly handled rather than molded. The restrained pier supports of the unrailed veranda stretched across the front appear to be Victorian—although early twentieth century is also possible.

Writing Credits

William H. Jordy et al.


What's Nearby


William H. Jordy et al., "Farnum Farm", [Glocester, Rhode Island], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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