I knew that the charming 1793 summer house designed by Salem’s renown architect and woodcarver Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) had been moved (from its original location 4 miles away on Salem merchant king Elias Hasket Derby’s Peabody farm–successively the property of the Crowninshield and Osborn families), and copied (by Derby’s distant descendant Martha Codman for her Newport mansion Berkeley Villa, which you can read about here), but I had no idea until very recently that it was the inspiration for a Houston McMansion.
Here is a panorama of pictures taken yesterday of McIntire’s beautiful summer house, situated since 1901 on the Glen Magna estate in Danvers, Massachusetts.
And here, via my very favorite pinner on Pinterest, via the Cote de Texas blog, via Luxe magazine, are pictures of a house outside downtown Houston designed by John Ike of Ike Ligerman Barkley Architects of New York.
It is probably wrong of me to call this house a McMansion as it is only two rooms deep, but it does have white marble flours (versus the painted wood of the original). I’m not sure what to think of this creation: is imitation the sincerest form of flattery in this case?
Another view: a Rudolf Ruzicka Christmas card for the Merrymount Press, 1940.
August 3rd, 2012 at 9:03 am
That is a very cool house. Simple yet intracate.
August 5th, 2012 at 10:03 am
Marvelous post. There is no building I like better than the Derby summer house. While I realize they weren’t going for a slavish copy, the new one, with its off-set street facing garage, and its wide drip eave in the pediment, and poorly proportioned pilasters, leaves me a tad cold (the interior gives me a downright chill). The original’s single second floor room, with its delicated woodwork, perfect proportions and cove ceiling is so lovely.
I think I’ve sent this link to you before in a different context, so forgive the repetition, but the gigantic Edward Stotesbury summer ‘cottage’ at Bar Harbor had two wings that were blown up versions of the Derby summer house—beautifully detailed, but the exquisite tight proportions of the original were lost in the up-sizing. http://thedowneastdilettante.blogspot.com/2009/12/summer-delirium-colonial-style-part-2.html
August 9th, 2012 at 6:26 am
I do think you’ve sent me this link, DD, and I’m so glad you forwarded it again. In the dog days of summer, I obviously forgot it, and this post is obviously enhanced with it!