Architecture in Massachusetts

Federal Architecture 

Federal style architecture is commonly found in older buildings, and it was the type of architecture used by the early settlers in Massachusetts. 

Characteristics of federal architecture:

  • Symmetry 
  • A fan window above the front door 
  • Shallow roof 
  • Balustrades around the roof (sometimes)

Federal houses are usually simple, and have balancing windows and chimneys, so everything is symmetrical.  Some examples of higher end federal homes are the Lyman Estate and the Gore Estate, which are both located in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Lyman Estate
Gore Estate

Greek Revival

The Greek Revival era in America was inspired by commonly known buildings in Greece.  Americans were fascinated by Greek architecture at the time, and built many homes in the northeast with columns, off-centered doors, and pediments.  

Americans were also appreciative of Greek history, as it was the home of democracy.  Greek Revival architecture became popular not too long after the colonies gained independence from Britain.


Italianate architecture is inspired by Italian Renaissance architecture, it is my favorite kind of architecture.

Some characteristics of Italianate architecture:

  • A sloping roof
  • Symmetry
  • Brackets along the bottom of the roof
  • Rounded windows
  • Tall

Italianate homes tend to be highly decorated on the exterior, which makes them stand out. This is why it is my favorite style of architecture. I love the large windows, high ceilings, and decorated exterior of Italianate style homes.

Queen Anne

Queen Anne architecture is one of my favorite kinds of architecture, and it’s a type of Victorian Architecture.  Queen Anne architecture was popular in America around the late 19th century and early 20th century.

Characteristics of Queen Anne architecture:

  • Asymmetrical
  • Towers
  • Complex roofs
  • Gables
  • Wrap around porch
  • Colorful
  • Decorative, grand

Queen Anne architecture has always been one of my favorite kinds of architecture because I love how Queen Anne’s are usually colorful, and when I was younger I used to think the towers were like the towers of a castle.

Stick Style

Stick Style architecture is similar to the Queen Anne style.  It differs in the sense that it’s not as grand and elaborate.  Stick Style homes are still large and colorful, but they use more natural tones, and have wooden decorations.  

Characteristics of stick style architecture:

  • Complex roof
  • Gables
  • Unsymmetrical
  • Wooden exterior
  • Neutral exterior colors

Architecture is an underrated type of art. Most people consider art to be paintings, music, or drawings. Architecture is unique, it can take many forms, and can last hundreds of years. It is important to preserve and take care of old houses, because old houses carry a lot of history. Also, with new developments and new styles of architecture, old houses are disappearing around the country. Luckily, in Massachusetts, there are still a lot of old, historic homes.

4 comentarios sobre “Architecture in Massachusetts

  1. I thought this blog was very interesting and informative. I did not know much about the different types of architecture before reading this. I really enjoy the conclusion where you connect it back to art and remind us to «preserve» these types of houses.

  2. I enjoyed reading this blog, because I never knew there were all these different styles of architecture. While reading this I started thinking about my own house and was trying to figure out what style it is most like. I like that you bulleted key features for each style so we could view them and see what they look like.

  3. I enjoyed reading this blog and getting to learn more about the architecture where i’m from! It was very well written and informative.

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