|photo by Beyond my Ken|
Architects in the United States took Queen Anne and ran with it, creating distinctly American sub-styles.
Among the early proponents of Queen Anne was the architectural partnership of Hubert & Pirsson. In 1886 when they were commissioned by William Rhinelander to design ten row houses on East 89th Street, they had just completed the massive and exuberant Queen Anne style Chelsea Apartments (now the Chelsea Hotel) on West 23rd Street, completed in 1883.
|photo by Alice Lum|
To fit ten houses on the plots between Third and Lexington Avenues, Rhinelander had the architects reduce their width to 12-1/2 feet, about half of a normal city lot. The exception was No. 146, which was a little over 20 feet in width. By the time construction began, the project was reduced to six homes.
|The varied angles and materials created a visually-appealing roofline -- photo by Alice Lum|
The string of houses, completed in 1887, was a visual delight. Each was different, yet they flowed together creating a uniform whole. Steep slate-tiled mansard roofs were broken by dormers. Oriel windows at various levels, terra cotta ornamentation, wrought iron balconies and artistic brickwork melded in a picturesque grouping. The entranceways to nos. 148 and 154 were recessed behind dramatic, wide archways.
|No. 148 retains its original paneled double entrance doors and whimsical iron railings -- photo by Alice Lum|
Rhinelander kept ownership of the houses, renting them to successful middle-class families such as that of Charles Jenkins who lived in No. 150 in 1890. Jenkins was president of the Manhattan Railway News Company and of the Manhattan Railway Advertising Company. As the elevated trains were erected throughout the city, Jenkins conceived of installing newsstands in the stations; a business which made him financially successful.
The Jenkins family lived here while their new home in New Brighton, Staten Island, was under construction.
|Carved panels, fishscale tiles and ornamental brickwork added to the charm -- photo by Alice Lum|
It was not until October 24, 1945 that the Rhinelander family sold the six houses, when Joseph L. Ennis Co. purchased them from the Philip Rhinelander estate.
|photo by Alice Lum|
Thank you for posting. I live in one of these homes and did not know the full historyReplyDelete
I grew up in 150. I knew about Rhinelander but learned a lot from this.ReplyDelete
Wonderful to read this description, thank you. My great, great-aunts, Margaret and Mary McGuire leased 146 East 89th in the early 1900s and ran a 12 bedroom 'gentile' boarding house. Some of the guests made 146 their permanent home. My mother, as a child, would help out her great aunts with chores and she has written many stories of her times there in the 1930s. The house was sold (or leased to someone else) around 1939. I hope the row of houses are still there and are happy homes. My mother would be so pleased.ReplyDelete