American Architectural History - Federal Period

Federal Period - Residential

Samuel Whitehorne House

Newport, RI



With brick structures being popularized by Philadelphian townhouses and architecture, brick was a trend of the time and greatly available. Federal characteristics displayed in the Samuel Whitehorne House are:

  • urban context of structure

  • shared formal entrance and organization symmetry with Georgian precedent

  • small plot (time before vehicles)

  • corner chimney -- more typical of southern influence and break with local colonial vernacular

  • low sloped roof -- looks a flat-roofed townhouse from the street

The brick material is an assertion of the importance of the builder; not just for civic structures as previously seen. The cupola was added in the 1850s, giving the house it an Italianate flair.

Federal Period - Commercial

Newport Steam Mill

(Now International Yacht Restoration School)

Newport, RI



The Newport Steam Mill was built by adding an addition onto an existing stone structure. It was one of the very few mill buildings in Newport where trade, fishing and fine craft dominated the economy just before and after the Revolutionary War. The brick addition to the Newport Steam Mill displays these trademark Federal Period characteristics:

  • shallow roof -- appearing flat when viewed from sides

  • exposed beams (as it was a utilitarian structure)

  • brick structure