Home Styles in Spring Hill, TN

From nearly 200 year old Colonials to 3 year old Millenium Mansions, here are some of the home styles in Spring Hill, TN and the details that make them what they are.

The lion share of our education on architectural styles comes from Virginia McAlester's oft-quoted and referenced, "A Field Guide To American Houses", the most respected book in this field of study. All credit to this wonderful text.

This article includes our interpretation of details on each home. Most of the time a home will have more than one influence and can be defined as any style that influences it heavily.

French Colonial:

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This home is one of the oldest in Spring Hill. Its flared eaves and hipped roof with a ridge give away its French Colonial style. As most historic homes this one has been remodeled several times over the years and the chimneys that typically adorn a French styled home are missing. The fireplaces are present inside the home, but it appears that, when the roof was replaced, the chimneys were brought down.

It also appears that the porch is a later addition to this home. Typically, French Colonials don't have inset porches. We can also see that the square columns with Romanesque capitals do not fit the style of this home. The columns seem a misfit for the header and there is no entablature, a common detail on Romanesque, classical, and Greek style homes that have such columns.

Millenium Mansion:

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The Millenium Mansion style incorporates almost anything you can think of. The dominant characteristics are a dramatic, complex roof design with cascading gables and multiple wall materials. Note that this home is mostly brick with one gable face covered with irregular stone. These materials are always applied like "wallpaper", in that they aren't structural, but for decoration (and some weather proofing).

Millenium Mansions generally include details that are influenced by historic styles, but mixed and matched at random. For instance, the home above has a hip-on-gable that was commonly found on Tudor or Craftsman homes. It also features "quoins", commonly seen on Italian, French, and colonial styles.

The hipped, metal pediment over the front porch has Italian influence and the arched windows are found in almost any style. 

Federal Colonial:

Colonial style influences are prevalent in Spring Hill, and Tennessee in general. This example of a Federal may be the oldest home still standing in Spring Hill. It was built in the 1830s. 

Colonials are recognized by their symmetrical, simple shapes. This home is book-ended with two end chimneys in the southern colonial tradition. The side-gabled, two story details are in the northern tradition. 

Notice the symmetrically placed 3-rank windows, a common colonial trait. The six panes of glass per sash are a hint this is a federal. The simple and unadorned cornice was common on Georgian and Federal colonials, as was the low foundation.

This home has also certainly been renovated and changed throughout its almost 200 years. An I-shaped wing was added in brick. Colonials usually featured front door surrounds with pilasters, fanlights, and pediments, and sometimes those features came together in a portico. The siding of this home has been changed and, with it, likely the door and windows surrounds were not replaced or a rotting portico was simply torn down. 

It can be hard to distinguish between a Georgian and Federal colonial. The windows tell us this is a Federal unless they were replaced along the way. Either way, this is a beautiful early 19th century colonial with, no doubt, many stories to tell.

Folk Victorian:

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Folk Victorian homes are an easy style to recognize. They include a post railroad, folk house design adorned with Victorian, and many times Italianate, detailing. This home is a great example of the style.

Notice the front-gabled design with a wing; a common folk architecture. The dentils on the cornice, ornate detailing on the porch and railing, and pent roof that extends over the porch are all Queen Anne Victorian details. 

Arched gable and side windows and the hexagonal bay window are common Italianate details.

Interestingly, a log home style wing was added at some point giving this home a unique, quirky character.

Ranch:

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Ranch style homes are an American style started in California and based loosely on Spanish colonials. The home above is an example of a styled ranch designed to resemble a colonial revival. It's not as eclectic as many styled ranches can be, but it includes symmetrical window layout and a large front porch with pent roof that hint at colonial style. 

As is commonly the theme with new traditional homes, the design doesn't quite match the style it's influenced by. The porch is not full width as we would find on a typical colonial.

This is a beautiful example of a 90s side-gabled, colonial revival styled ranch.

Colonial Revival:

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As is our human nature, we long for the past. Styles, music, food - the past is looked on with romantic idealism. "Those were the good 'ole days".

Architecture wholeheartedly subscribes to this way of thinking. Historic structures carry a sense of grandeur and substance that has generated entire movements of design. The Arts and Crafts movement was the answer to increasing industrialization. This movement sought to get back to the  techniques of using natural materials and building by hand to showcase raw, natural craftsmanship.

Most of the "revival" designs sought to hearken back to the designs of the past. Colonial revival is no different. This home, built in the early 20th century, epitomizes this style. The cross-gabled design, triangular pediment over the front door, low-pitched roof, and side wings are all colonial revival details. Additional colonial revival details include upper floor windows that touch the cornice and tall first floor windows.

Like most older homes this one has been altered. The side wings were originally side porches, a common colonial revival trait, and have been enclosed in the last 50 years.

New Traditional Colonial Revival:

This home is in the New Traditional, Colonial Revival category, but it does have characteristics of a Millenium Mansion. The two story entrance with arched upper story window is quintessential Millenium Mansion styling as is the faux shingle material on the gable. 

This home doesn't have the overly complex roof design of a Millenium Mansion, although the nested gables begin to push in that direction, and that's where the scale tips in favor of Colonial Revival.

The 5-ranked windows, symmetrical and simple shape, and low-pitched, simple, hipped roof are all strong Colonial Revival characteristics.

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Tommy Byers