The Federal, or Adam, style dominated American architecture from approximately 1780 to 1840 and this exquisite house is an excellent example of the style. This is the second time I have featured a stately home that has been renovated by one family whose dual passions of architecture and gardens created two masterpieces in Easton’s Historic District, with assistance from their architect, Charles Goebel. Unlike the family’s second house on S. Harrison, this house, circa 1840, is sited on a corner lot close to a busy street; however, the lush and mature landscaping hides the view of cars and the sound of the fountain in the rear garden muffles the traffic noise.
The front elevation has the lightness and delicacy of the Federal/Adam style and is an exquisite confection of symmetry with its pale color palette and massing. The detailing of the two and a half story, three-bay part of the house has an articulated cornice with modillions, corner boards and 6/6 windows with shutters placed in symmetrical rows. The front door with a rectangular transom and ¾ glass, ¼ sidelights is covered by a pedimented roof supported by twin pairs of columns. The brick stoop, steps and sidewalk end at a low brick wall next to the Town sidewalk. I wondered if the two-bay two-story side wing had been an addition since it lacked any cornice detailing and was set back as if to give prominence to the other part of the house but I could not find any information for verification.
The front door opens into a deep entrance hall with a vista to the stairs and the rear French door in the small sunroom leading to the gardens. Cross vistas through equally wide wall openings are on axis to both the living room and to the dining room. The living room fireplace is flanked by floor to ceiling built-in millwork and windows on both the front and rear walls bring sunlight throughout the day. I loved the colors of this room from the pale yellow walls with white trim, light mocha upholstery, dark wood flooring and the beautiful antiques.
The dining room’s lovely rose colored walls above a white wainscot and the white fireplace surround add warmth to the room. The beautiful inlaid wood of the dining room table under the period style chandelier would be the perfect setting to linger over a winter dinner by the fire.
A deep arched wall opening leads to the spacious gourmet kitchen that would inspire even the most novice chef. The dark wood floors accentuate the pristine white cabinets and the exotic granite countertops. The windows at the side and the glass fronted upper cabinets keep the space light and airy. I especially liked the placement of the range in front of the adjacent dining room chimney so the range prominently projects into the room. The stove hood between the closed upper cabinets is detailed in paneling with a shelf to display a colorful ceramic plate. The coffered ceiling with trimmed beams adds great interior architecture to the kitchen. The cozy breakfast room off the kitchen has a sloped ceiling and wrap-around windows at the side and rear for garden views. Another stair off the kitchen leads to the second floor rear suite. A few steps down from the short hall behind the kitchen is a family room that is perpendicular to the main house with windows on three sides for garden views. A French door leads to a flagstone terrace leading to the gravel paths through the gardens.
The second floor contains a sumptuous master suite with the bedroom at the corner with double doors leading to a sitting room next to the large walk-in closet. The master bedroom and sitting room have back to back fireplaces. The bath is located on the other side of the master bedroom with a tub, corner shower and dual lavatories set into an antique cabinet with a pediment topped mirror above. Another bedroom en-suite is opposite the master bedroom. The secondary stair from the family room on the main level leads to a self-contained suite with a full bath centered in the large space for a very private guest suite or office area with bird’s eye views of the gardens. As beautiful as the second floor guest rooms are, I would seek out the third floor suite with the low knee walls, sloped ceilings and the small windows. The white walls and ceilings and the light gray carpeting would also be a fun playroom since the header heights are perfect for little children and the family pet.
When I walked through the gardens and stopped at the fountain that was set at the intersection of the four gravel paths I felt I was looking at a house museum-this exquisite house and its meticulous grounds have clearly been much loved by its two owners. Hopefully, another very lucky owner will soon appreciate this gem in the heart of Easton’s Historic District. Off street parking is a plus and there is room on the site for an approved carriage house/carriage, also designed by the architect Charles Goebel-Bellissima!
For more information about this property, contact Jana Meredith with Meredith Fine Properties at 410-822-6272 (o), 443-235-3404 (c), email@example.com , “Equal Housing Opportunity”.
Spy House of the Week is an ongoing series that selects a different home each week. The Spy’s Habitat editor Jennifer Martella makes these selections based exclusively on her experience as a architect.
Jennifer Martella has pursued her dual careers in architecture and real estate since she moved to the Eastern Shore in 2004. Her award winning work has ranged from revitalization projects to a collaboration with the Maya Lin Studio for the Children’s Defense Fund’s corporate retreat in her home state of Tennessee.