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Lime Rock Village Center

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Intersection of Great and Anna Sayles rds.

Extending uphill from the intersection of Great Road and Anna Sayles roads is a line of country buildings which mark the heart of the village, interesting less for their individual merit (although this is considerable) than as a village group with varied functions. First, at the junction, is a plain, well-crafted brick building of two stories with a hooded, transomed door in one corner and Masonic symbols in the gable roundels at either end, which was enlarged in 1804 from a one-room schoolhouse by the local Masons as Mt. Moriah Lodge Number Eight ( LI29.1; 1804; 1093 Great Road). Diagonally across Great Road, at 1092, what was formerly Mowry Tavern ( LI29.2; c. 1800 and later; gabled unit to east, late 1980s) began as a small, plain house, which expanded linearly as the inn prospered. Sometime during the mid-nineteenth century, a pretty porch on open supports with scroll bracketing was added across the front of the elongated building. Opposite, at 1091 Great Road, is another fine standard two-and-one-half-story, five-bay, end-chimney Federal house ( LI29.3; c. 1820) with a transomed door which is actually off center, framed in plainly paneled pilasters and a plain pediment. Plainness is the rule here, but forcefully so, as is especially evident in the impact of the largish twelve-over-twelve sashed windows. Modern eyes, accustomed to the postmodernist's penchant for adapting regular colonial schemes, then disrupting them for taut, witty effects, will delight in the congestion of fourfifths of the expected pattern of openings at one end of the elevation, then a wider interval before its termination. What originated from functional considerations (and possibly as a later addition) eventually inspires conscious aesthetic response. Next to this, and up the hill at 1089 Great Road, is a one-and-one-half-story Greek Revival building with Doric portico that originally housed the Smithfield Lime Rock Bank ( LI29.4; c. 1835). Chartered in 1823 by leaders of the lime processing industry, the bank went to Providence in 1847, and its old headquarters became a house. Its handsomely straightforward Doric porch reappears farther along (see LI31).

Writing Credits

William H. Jordy et al.


What's Nearby


William H. Jordy et al., "Lime Rock Village Center", [Lincoln, Rhode Island], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Rhode Island, William H. Jordy, with Ronald J. Onorato and William McKenzie Woodward. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004, 200-201.

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