Michael O. Bourne
Lawrence Avenue, Annapolis, Anne Arundel County
Howard's Inheritance is a 1 1/2-story gambrel-roofed brick house with a hall-parlor plan located near Annapolis in Anne Arundel County, Maryland. The building appears to have been constructed in the latter half of the 18th century, possibly as early as c. 1760, with interior finishes renewed c. 1840. A 1 1/2-story gambrel-roofed brick wing, smaller and lower than the main block, was added to the east elevation in 1942, replacing an earlier frame wing. The principal facade is four bays wide and faces south. The entrance is located in the second bay from the west, with 6/6 sash in the remaining bays. Brick is English bond above the first floor line, and below grade the foundation is of stone. Above the windows the uppermost courses are laid in common bond with one course of headers. The north elevation is two bays wide, with a 4/4 window in the eastern bay and an entrance to the west. The door is mortised and pegged; carved on its deep recessed frame is "James Miller, August 23, 1821." The window may have been relocated from the east end, possibly when a doorway was created in that wall. Evidence in the masonry suggests that the window opening was reduced in size to accommodate the present sash. The second story has two 6/6 sash shed dormers. At the northeast corner of this section, a remnant outline of an earlier wing, with a lower roof of a different pitch, is evident. This wing is shown in photographs taken prior to the construction of the 1942 gambrel-roofed wing. An interior chimney with a corbeled cap rises at the east end of this section. The west end has a central exterior door opening with a late-19th century 4-panel door. Window openings flank this entrance, and two 6/6 sash are located in the half-story. Also on the property is a 19th century frame corn crib.
Howard's Inheritance is significant as an excellent, relatively unaltered example of a hall-parlor plan house, typical of 18th century vernacular domestic architecture in the Chesapeake tidewater region. Probably dating from the latter half of the 18th century, the building exhibits the characteristic arrangement of one unheated and one heated room on the first floor. Both the front and the rear entrances open into the unheated room that also includes the stair to the upper floor. Later alterations have been limited to interior finishes (much of the existing trim dates to a c. 1840 remodeling) and later additions which have not affected the essential features of the hall-parlor house.