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Maryland's National Register Properties

Photo credit: Paul Baker Touart, 10/2002
Legg's Dependence
Inventory No.: QA-206
Other Name(s): Long Creek Farm; William E. Porter Farm
Date Listed: 11/8/2003
Location: 200 Long Creek Court , Stevensville, Queen Annes County
Category: Building
Period/Date of Construction: c. 1760-80; c. 1840
Description: The property historically known as Legg's Dependence is situated on a 5-acre parcel bordering Long Creek on the east side of Romancoke Road, south of Stevensville. The 2 1/2-story center-hall plan brick house was built in several stages beginning around 1760-80 as a single-story hall/parlor plan dwelling. A single-story brick gable end addition was attached within the following decade. The house was enlarged to its 2 1/2-story form during the second quarter of the 19th century, and the interior was thoroughly reworked at the same time. The west (main) facade is a three-bay elevation with a center entrance and flanking 6/6 sash windows. A split leaf front door is topped by a three-light transom. Sheltering the doorway is a turned-post Victorian standing-seam metal hip-roofed porch with sawnwork brackets and a central cross gable. The second story, laid in Flemish bond, is defined by three 6/6 sash windows. The top of the wall surface is finished with corbeled brick sawtooth cornice, which is now partly obscured by the extended eaves of the rebuilt roof. The edge of the roof is finished with exposed rafter tails. The asphalt roof, with interior chimneys at either end, has three gable-roofed dormers with 6/6 sash windows and extended eaves on the west slope and two on the east. The east facade of the house is partly covered by a one-story gable-roofed frame addition that covers the center bay. The all-header bond first story has 6/6 sash windows with brick jack arches. The wide central doorway, with a replacement door, has a brick jack arch with an undercut segmental arch. To either side are windows openings reduced in size in the 1840s and now fitted with 6/6 sash windows and spanned by jack arches. Three 6/6 sash windows with jack arches light the second floor. The south gable end, laid in a combination of Flemish and 6-course common bonds, has a bulkhead cellar entrance on the southwest corner and pairs of 6/6 sash windows with jack arches on the first and second floors. The north gable end is largely covered by the one-story header and Flemish bond wing, currently serving as a kitchen. When this wing was added, two first-floor windows were bricked up. The all-header bond east elevation of the wing is partly covered by a shed-roofed frame addition. The northernmost window, with an undercut segmental jack arch, is 6/6 sash. On the west facade, a wide central doorway with a rowlock row segmental arch is flanked by 6/6 sash windows. The base of the steeply pitched gable roof is finished with a boxed cornice. Extending from the north gable end of the kitchen wing is a one-story concrete block garage that has been covered with plain weatherboards. The interior of the main block was thoroughly reworked in the 1840s with new floors and Greek Revival inspired woodwork. The brick walled partition on the north side was retrimmed with Greek Revival moldings with a six-panel door opening into the former "parlor" and new dining room. The ground-floor window openings were reduced in width and trimmed corner block surrounds. The staircase is distinguished by a boldly turned walnut newel post, tapered maple balusters with tiger maple figuring, and a walnut handrail that ramps to the first landing post. The stair stringer is embellished with a mid-19th century scroll or wave pattern decoration. Access under the stair is provided by a two-panel Greek Revival door. The north and south rooms retain mid-19th century woodwork. The house retains a high degree of architectural integrity. Significance: The house known as Legg's Dependence is architecturally significant for aspects of its design and construction. The initial hall/parlor plan dwelling, built c. 1760-80, is one of only three buildings in Queen Anne's County to exhibit all-header bond, a type of brick wall construction characteristic of several gentry-level dwellings erected in Annapolis during the third quarter of the 18th century. At Legg's Dependence, two all-header bond brick walls have survived, one in nearly pristine condition with original tooled joints and a well crafted doorway jack arch, which has a distinctive segmental arched undercut finish. The east elevation of the adjacent wing has an all-header bond wall and one exposed jack arch with an undercut segmental arch, however the majority of the wall is now covered by a later shed-roofed addition. These expensive and labor intensive masonry details inside the original house was intended to face east and the water access on Long Creek. The house is architecturally significant for its 19th century modifications as well since the alterations reflect a response to shifting trends in transportation, agriculture, commerce and social norms in the county, state, and nation. By the 1840s, roads had eclipsed the water as the principal mode of transportation within the region, prompting the owners of Legg's Dependence ot redefine the principal elevation from the east water approach to the west land entrance. The reorientation of the house was translated inside as well with a repositioned stair in a formal center hall. The partition of the south side of the hall is a stud partition that was inserted to subdivide the larger dimensional hall of the 18th century dwelling. The stair was oriented to face the land-side doorway with its distinctive split-leaf construction. The mid-19th century reorientation of the house was underscored in the last decade of the century with the construction of a fancy turned post front porch, featuring sawn brackets and a central cross gable.


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