Skip to Main Content

Maryland's National Register Properties

Photo credit: MHT File Photo, Undated Photo
Inventory No.: HO-47
Date Listed: 4/30/1976
Location: 4252 Columbia Road , Ellicott City, Howard County
Category: Building
Period/Date of Construction: 1857
Architect/Builder: Architect: Nathan Gibson Starkwether
Description: Temora is a T-shaped, two-story and cupola, Tuscan-style Victorian house of stuccoed tongue-and-groove boards. The house was built in 1857 after a design prepared by Nathan Gibson Starkwether. The symmetrically arranged principal facade faces southeast and features two projecting gabled pavilions joined by a one-story porch. Centered between the pavilions is the main entrance, one of the most outstanding features of the house. Elegant in its simplicity, it has a double, semicircular-headed architrave framing narrow sidelights, a large fanlight, and a heavily paneled double-leafed door. Above this door on the second-floor level is a three-part hooded window in a Palladian motif. On the front of both pavilions are double windows at both floor levels. Those of the first floor are flat headed and extend down to within one foot of the porch floor. Those of the second floor have rounded upper sash and molded hoods, and also extend down to within a short distance of the porch roof. Both pavilions have shallow-pitched gables and deep eaves decorated with carved brackets. The porch fronting this elevation has four sets of double posts, bracketed eaves, and a balustraded roof. On both ends of the house, the rear half of the building projects out in a manner similar to the front pavilions. Each has, on the first floor level, a projecting five-sided bay window with balustraded roof. Above these are triple, Canadian style windows with molded hoods. The rear elevation of the house has a centered gabled pavilion with a first floor entrance that opens into the main hall which is now covered by a later wood vestibule. The north half of this elevation is covered by a two-story kitchen wing. With the exception of those already discussed, the first-floor windows of the house have bracketed hoods and skills. The shallow-pitched, tin-sheathed, multi-gabled roof has deep bracketed eaves and four paneled chimneys with decoratively corbeled caps. Centered on the roof is a square cupola with a triple, elliptically arched and hooded window on each of its four sides. Its Queen Anne-style roof, repeating the arched entrance and second floor windows, adds continuity and grace to the total composition. Significance: Temora was designed by Nathan Gibson Starkwether, a little-known but accomplished architect from Oxford, England, who also designed the First Presbyterian Church on Park Avenue in Baltimore. The house was designed and built for Dr. Arthur Pue, a prominent mid-19th century Howard County physician. Dr. Pue had inherited the Temora property from his grandmother, Mary Dorsey Pue. Mary Dorsey Pue was a daughter of Caleb Dorsey of Belmont, an illustrious member of an old, prominent Maryland family, Caleb Dorsey's home, Belmont, is one of Maryland's most significant early-18th century landmarks, well known for its architecture and historical associations. Temora is a particularly fine example of its architectural type, reflecting in a restrained, sophisticated manner the tastes of the period. It is especially important in that it was designed by an architect contract specifically for that purpose and because it remains today much the same in appearance as it did when built.


Return to the National Register Search page