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Maryland's National Register Properties



Photo credit: Jennifer K. Cosham, 04/10/2004
Spring Bank Farm
Inventory No.: F-3-22
Date Listed: 9/7/1984
Location: 7945 Worman's Mill Road (MD 355) , Frederick, Frederick County
Category: Building
Period/Date of Construction: 1880
Architect/Builder: Builder: George G. Walter
Description: Spring Bank is a large 2 1/2-story brick dwelling constructed in 1880, facing west on the east side of Worman's Mill Road and the railroad tracks in Harmony Grove. The house is five bays wide and two rooms deep, with an original two-story rear wing. A Victorian veranda spans the principal (west) facade, and the south side of the wing has a two-story gallery characteristic of mid- to late-19th century farmhouses in central and western Maryland. A fishscale patterned slate roof of complex, multigabled form covers the building; a large frame cupola or belvedere is centered on the main block. The house is constructed of brick laid in common bond, and rests on a low stone foundation. The southern three bays of the west facade project slightly forward of the main block of the house, and are surmounted by a large cross gable with a large Gothic-arched window, and a dentiled raking cornice with returns. The main entrance, located in an arched paneled opening with radiating stretchers, is twin two-panel doors with upper arched panel and plain elliptical transom. The exterior doors open into an entrance foyer with alternating square black and white tile floor. The doors to the interior of the house are twin two-panel doors with copper-wheel-etched glass inserts and etched glass elliptical transom in a flower basket design. Located in the remaining bays on the first level, and in all the first-floor window bays of the main block, are tall double-hung 1/1 semicircular topped windows with radiating stretcher arches. Second-floor windows have 1/1 sash windows with arched tops and brick arches. A one-story flat-roofed porch on square columns, with an elaborate frieze with round molding, repeating rectangular blocks, dentil work, and scrolled brackets, extends across the entire front of the house. Two interior chimneys rise from either side of the roof peak in the gable ends. The south gable end, three bays wide, holds a polygonal bay window in the west bay, with 1/1 sash windows, a hipped roof with box cornice, dentiled frieze, and small brackets. A side entrance and one-bay porch are also located on this facade of the main block. The porch is also elaborately decorated, and shelters a transomed door on the first story, and provides a balcony for another door on the second floor, which is in turn sheltered by an elaborate hip-roofed canopy with a finial. The north gable end features an elaborate two-story polygonal bay window in the west bay. Both attic gables feature 1/1 sash Gothic-arched windows like the one in the front cross gable. Two telescoping gable-roofed two-story brick wings extend to the east. The first, pictured on a late 19th century etching of the property, is covered by a two-story shed-roofed porch on its south facade. The first floor of this facade holds five bays, the three to the west (a door flanked by windows) likely replacing two former bays. The second floor holds transomed doors in its first and third bays from the west. Most other windows on this block are 2/2 sash. The north side of this block has a small shed-roofed porch over the western three bays, which again were probably replacements of a single former bay. A flush chimney rises from the east gable end of this portion. A shorter two-story addition is attached to the east end, with a shallower gable roof and 6/6 chimneys. The interior of the house is organized in a center-passage plan, and retains the majority of its original finish and detailing, including etched glass, marbleized slate mantels, grain-painted woodwork, plaster ornaments, and floral stenciled walls and ceiling. Limited alterations were made to both interior and exterior in 1924-26, during a renovation conceived by the son of the owners at that time, an architecture student; the house retains considerable integrity, however, and primarily reflects the period of its original construction. Also on the property are several brick outbuildings contemporaneous with the main house, inclu Significance: Spring Bank is primarily significant for its architecture, as a well-preserved example of a type of late-19th century dwelling combining Gothic and Italianate influences which appears in rural contexts in north Central Maryland. This form clothes the traditional 5-bay, double-pile, 2 1/2-story farmhouse in high-style ornament, including such Gothic-derived details as lancet-arched windows and projecting bays and an irregular multigabled roof clad in fishscale patterned slate, along with an Italianate belvedere and tall round-arched (originally floor-to-ceiling) windows opening onto a veranda. A number of large brick farmhouses displaying this interplay of conservative form and stylish ornament can be found in Frederick County and adjacent Carroll and Washington Counties; Spring Bank is distinguished among these by its excellent state of preservation. The house retains a wealth of original interior fabric and detail intact; notable features include floral stencil-painted walls and ceilings, plaster cornices and ceiling medallions, marbleized slate mantels and grain-painted doors, interior shutters, and baseboards.
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