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Carr Homestead

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Late 18th century. 90 Carr Ln.

From Shingle Style bungalow variants of the late nineteenth century back to an antecedent: a well-proportioned five-bay, central-chimney shingled farmhouse, probably built c. 1790. The abrupt juxtaposition makes clear how revivalist sentiment gentled the uncompromising straightforwardness of most country colonial design and its placement in the landscape. Here these qualities must be grasped through the privet hedge with garden gate that veils the front and confirms revivalist tendencies toward prettifying the colonial past while sanctifying it by setting it somewhat apart in its own precinct. Fine stone walls, sheds of later date than the house, a corncrib (probably from the nineteenth century), and a long, low barn of the 1930s complete the farm ensemble.

The Carr family, the original owners, worked the farm from the late eighteenth century until its agricultural life ended in 1945, before which managers briefly operated it as a dairy farm (hence the 1930s structure). Along the way it served as the headquarters for the first library on the island, when the Jamestown Philomenian Library Association deposited its collection in a cupboard at the head of the back stairs. Founded in 1828 as the Philomenian Debating Society, it later decided to found a library. The house, which is not open to the public, is now owned by the Carr Homestead Foundation and is available to Carr family members.

Writing Credits

Author: 
William H. Jordy et al.
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Citation

William H. Jordy et al., "Carr Homestead", [Jamestown, Rhode Island], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/RI-01-JA4.

Print Source

Buildings of Rhode Island, William H. Jordy, with Ronald J. Onorato and William McKenzie Woodward. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004, 586-586.

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