Photo credit: Donna Ware , 06/1986

Property Name: James Owens Farm
Date Listed: 9/21/1987
Inventory No.: AA-247
Location: 5682, Greenock Road (MD 259), Bristol, Anne Arundel County

Description: The James Owens Farm includes a well-preserved collection of 19th century farm buildings of which the centerpiece is a large mid-19th century, two-story brick cross-gable late Greek Revival/Italianate dwelling. The two-story, cross-gable main block consists of a central passage single pile plan with a rear wing composed of two two-story wings with gable roofs set perpendicular to the main block and joined by a two-story stair passage. The final composition resembles a T-plan with a thick stem. It is constructed of brick laid in seven-course common bond, and has a slate shingle roof and pairs of interior centrally placed chimneys on both the main block and the wing. The exterior and interior finishings display a high degree of integrity with little or no alteration. An ornate one-story hip-roofed porch covers the front (southeast) facade. It is embellished with Italianate posts and brackets and has a shallow coffered ceiling. A similar one-story frame porch fills the north corner of the main block and wing on the northeast elevation. A partially enclosed one-story frame porch with the same Italianate trim fills the west corner of the southwest elevation. A one-story frame bay window extends from the northeast gable end of the main block. The principal entrance is in the center bay of the front facade, and is composed of a 6-panel door with 3-pane sidelights an a 3-pane transom. Windows are predominantly 6/6 sash with flat brick arches. Arched 6/3 sash windows light the gable ends of the main block and the cross-gable on the facade at the attic story. Large 6/9 sash windows light the first story bays of the facade. The exterior is embellished with scrolled modillions at the cornice on all elevations and on the two side porches and bay window. Outbuildings include an early-19th century cornhouse, an early-19th century tobacco barn, a mid-19th century board-and-batten kitchen, carriage house, and smokehouse, and a late-19th century chicken house, all of frame construction. Northeast of the dwelling there is evidence of a Victorian terraced garden.

Significance: The James Owens Farm embodies the distinctive characteristics of a prosperous Western Shore farmstead during the agricultural-industrial transition period of Maryland's development. It displays a superior late Greek Revival/Italianate brick farmhouse constructed for James Owens, a successful tobacco farmer, and a full compliment of frame outbuildings indicative of the stability of this particular agricultural operation. Two of the outbuildings represent a method of construction unique to the Chesapeake Tidewater region and are the only documented examples of their type in Anne Arundel County.




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