6920 Boyer St, Philadelphia, PA, 19119
It should come as no surprise that we’ve featured an Arts & Crafts house more than once on Property since hallmarks of the movement include exposed beams, built-in bookcases, the use of natural materials, original oak wainscoting and inlaid hardwood floors. The style makes for charming residences and it just so happens that this home is one such property. (Although, in this case, its inlaid hardwood floors come with dark ribbon trim.)
Built by builder Ashton Tourison circa 1909, the home has only been sold twice in its lifetime. Careful preservation has allowed it to continue to boast original stained glass and brass lighting fixtures, with additional historical notes like a servant’s gong, a secret safe, which, according to the owner, is “hidden in a nook behind oak paneling,” and pocket doors.
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Corrina Burns | Photo by Jauhien Sasnou
The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence
Off-Broad Street Theater
Time and time again, we’ve heard that there’s a dearth of roles for actresses of a certain age. “But I think that might be changing,” says Corinna Burns, the female lead in Azuka Theatre’s The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence, a 2014 Pulitzer Prize finalist. Last season, the 42-year-old Swarthmore grad was cast in just one show. This season? “I have five shows,” she says, including Revolution Shakespeare’s just-wrapped Macbeth and a Fringe play that won accolades from the New York Times. “I feel very lucky. It’s an embarrassment of riches.”
More November must-dos after the jump
208-210 Rex Avenue, Philadelphia, PA.
In 1893, even prior to attending architecture school at Penn, Philadelphia architect H. Louis Duhring worked for one of the more notable architects of his day, Frank Furness (as in Frank Furness who designed Hockley Row, the Baldwin School, and Furness Library), etc.
Duhring must have learned something during his time with Furness because in 1897 he became the first recipient of the Stewardson Traveling Scholarship. The award granted him time in Venice, Italy, where he did extensive sketching. (His drawings from this time period would be used to rebuild the bell tower at St. Mark’s Square after it collapsed in 1902.)
When Duhring returned to Philadelphia in 1898, he started his own firm, and then entered a collaboration with R. Brognard Okie and Carl A. Ziegler under the name of Duhring, Okie & Ziegler. Eventually, Okie and Ziegler left, but in the firm’s early years, they focused on residential development, so that by 1910, Duhring was designing homes for Dr. George Woodward, the developer of St. Martins and Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia. (More Duhring info here.)
Duhring played a partial role in the design of this home on Rex Avenue, which he once owned. The front portion of the house is in the 1860s Victorian Italianate “summer” house style, but Duhring designed a four-story wing in the Arts and Crafts style when he was the homeowner. His addition makes the property viable for more than one use: single-family home, multi-unit building or subdivision for new single-family dwellings.
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It’s rare to buy a property and know much about the original owners. Rarer still: to know the original owner was William Penn. The land on which the Schoenhaus estate lies – historic in its own right now – was originally owned by none other than the OG Quaker himself. A brief chronology of the acreage reveals that after it was granted by Penn to the Vernon brothers, another Quaker bought it. Upon that man’s death, the land was purchased by William Lightfoot Price to establish a “utopian Arts and Crafts community.”
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301 Windsor Avenue, Wayne, PA.
We’ve profiled properties inspired by the Arts & Crafts architecture movement before (here and here), but here is a home that’s actually from the period. Built in 1925, this carefully preserved and updated residence was designed by Frank Stephens — founder of an Arts & Crafts group in Delaware and brother-in-law of Thomas Eakins — with the help of William Lightfoot Price. It’s composed of almost all the markers of the movement and includes a fondness for built-ins, exposed beams, natural materials, and fireplaces, among other features.
Updates to the home include a completely redone third floor and kitchen with new cabinets, marble counters, and a mosaic tile wall accent. It also has barstool seating and two sets of French doors leading to the yard. In the dining room you’ll find Tudor-style millwork with pocket doors that close it off from the panel-walled foyer (fireplace here) and the Great Room (fireplace here, too).
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