You are here

Roby House

-A A +A
1868, Hilas Roby. 217 S. Union St., City of Burlington

If not as grand as the mansions of the lumber barons on the hill, this is a fine Italianate house. Hilas Roby, who built it as his residence, was the principal of one of only three architectural firms listed on the 1869 F. W. Beers map of the city. H. Roby and Sons designed the Italianate commercial blocks at 115–125 College Street (1871–1875) and likely are responsible for many of the city's other commercial blocks and houses of the 1860s and 1870s. Roby's neighborhood is one of those near the core of the city that filled with the houses of successful merchants and professionals during the booming second half of the nineteenth century. His house is a cubic brick block with a low hipped roof, a central gabled-front pavilion, a lower north ell, and a prominent arcaded belvedere. A single-story porch on chamfered posts frames the transomed double-leaf door and is matched by verandas along the face of the ell and the back of the main block. Bold paired brackets carry the broad eaves and cast-iron lintels frame the heads of the windows. The composition displays an assertive vigor different from the quiet solidity of Burlington's earliest Italianate houses, but one attuned to the tastes of the prosperous milling and port city.

Writing Credits

Glenn M. Andres and Curtis B. Johnson


What's Nearby


Glenn M. Andres and Curtis B. Johnson, "Roby House", [Burlington, Vermont], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Vermont

Buildings of Vermont, Glenn M. Andres and Curtis B. Johnson. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 159-159.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,