Building Description Homewood House - Carroll Mansion, Baltimore Maryland

Homewood, built between 1801 and 1803 by Charles Carrol!, Jr., stands in 1971 on the Johns Hopkins University Campus as an example of the late Georgian country house in Baltimore.

The late Georgian or 'Federal' style marks the full height of Georgian architecture in America. Homewood, in the pre-Revolutionary Maryland tradition is a symmetrical five-part Palladian country house. The house has basic similarities to earlier houses such as Whitehall, Tulip Hill and Wye House - the five-part plan with large central block, a small wing connected by a hyphen on each end, and the full-height tetrastyle portico. The basic difference is that whereas Whitehall is a Neo-Palladian mid-Georgian house, Homewood is a Federal-Adamesque house. The whole approach to Homewood is refined, delicate and sophisticated. This is evident through a wealth of details carved in a period that marked the height of the wood carving tradition in America (e.g. Samuel Mclntire) and reflective of the contemporaneous Adamesque fashion in England. The detail is all in low relief and is small; the cornice, the capitals of the columns, the doorway pilasters and entablature are filled with miniature reeding, fluting, running 's', and acanthus leaves. The south pediment has Adamesque garlands around a shield-shaped window. The effect of Homewood is one of flatness; the long, narrow windows are flush against the exterior wall and the only decorative treatments on the walls are the marble window sills and panels above the central block windows. The roof is hipped and both north and south porticos abut into the main roof as a pedimented gable. The roof of the main block has two round-head dormers with Gothic sash. The south side of each hyphen has a doorway with a semicircular fanlight and is flanked by a Palladian-style window capped with a brick arch. The main (south) entrance door is topped by a semi-circular fanlight with delicate tracery, surrounded by fluted pilasters and entablature; the north side door has a Federal feature; a large, elaborately traceried, semi-circular fanlight. The north side is not as elaborate as the south side (except for the fanlight), especially in the use of a flat portico with pediment mounted on the roof. The base, steps, and columns appear to be recent.