ARCHIVED August 2023. Please visit for current information.

Colonial Revival

Colonial Revival: 1880-1955

potterpl52v1ddfritsch2012webBy the end of the nineteenth century a return to the classical forms based on the early English and Dutch houses in America had already taken hold as a building style. These were seen in the architect inspired designs of the late Victorian houses built for wealthy clients. This same period also saw a resurgence in classical design fueled by the 1893 Colombian Exposition.

The entrance at 52 Potter Place has the center door with sidelights, fanlight and the pediment/column detail is on the face of the structure. It has the original shingle siding and wood shutters with cut-outs in the top panel.

During the 1920s and 30s "modern" architects flirted briefly with Prairie and Craftsman styles but eventually American architecture, interrupted first by World War I and then the Depression, succumbed to the classical style reflective of its Old World beginnings.

As the century progressed, Colonial Revival came to dominate home building styles and remains a popular house design to this day. Fairport is fortunate to have all of these eclectic styles: Colonial Revival, Neoclassical, Tudor Revival and French Eclectic represented in its housing stock.


As in the house forms we have just left, mechanical developments greatly influenced this eclectic period. We have already seen the impact of the scroll saw and the availability of precut house trims on the development of earlier vernacular styles. We will see this again in the development of inexpensive masonry veneer on the next three housing styles.

This home at 69 W. Church Street has a center entrance with leaded-glass sidelights, and pedimented porch roof with columns. There are modillions under the eaves and corner pilasters. The windows are grouped in threes on the first floor and above the entrance. There are three dormers and an enclosed side wing.

Characteristic Details


Prior to 1910, early Colonial Revival forms were asymmetrical (not balanced). Eventually, a side-gabled, centered, symmetrical frame became the common form. Constructed of solid masonry in the early days and limited to more expensive homes, the development of artificial masonry (veneer) allowed homeowners to add a thin veneer of brick to the exterior of their modest wood frame home. Brick veneer applied to the front facade of the first floor and paired with a second story overhang is a common detail of the Revival style.

Roofs and Cornices

w.church104v1ddfritsch2012In the early days of the style, hipped and gambrel (Dutch Colonial) roofs with dormers and overhangs were prevalent. Cornices continued to be important features with dentil and decorative block molding.

The center entrance door with sidelights is common in the Colonial Revival style home. 110 West Church Street, built in 1910, also has two-story pilasters at the corners and there is an open side wing to the right.


As with their Georgian and Adam predecessors, it is all about the door. Elaborate front doors were accentuated with a decorative crown, pilaster, or columns that extend forward to form an entry porch that supports a broken pediment. A porch with a curved underside is a favored Colonial Revival detail.


Double-hung with six, eight or nine panes; when bay, paired or triple windows are present they clearly indicate a Colonial Revival house.

potterplace60_v1webThis brick example at 60 Potter Place with a center entrance door with a fanlight and sidelights. The porch has a curved underside and columns that extend forward to form an entry porch.

This home at 140 W. Church St. has more features of the original Colonial and Georgian homes - the windows are double-hung with eight-over-twelve panes. The windows are evenly spaced and much larger than most in the area.

potterplv136ddfritsch2012webThis home at 136 Potter Place is a Dutch Colonial Revival with a center entrance and roof across the front. The exposed roof beams are a feature of the Craftsman style.

3 Galusha Street in the Faircroft Subdivision shows a second story overhang.

This Cape Cod at 19 James Street is a sub-type of the Colonial Revival style. These houses are based on the wooden folk houses of eastern Massachusetts but with the addition of Georgian or Adam inspired doorways. They were popular during the 1920s to the 40s.

southmain198v1cangevine2012webThe dormer at 198 South Main spans almost the full length of the front to form a second story. The roof overhang has very large column supports.


32 Ridgeway in the Forest Hills neighborhood is an outstanding example of this style: dentil detailing under the eaves, six-over-six double-hung windows, a portico with pillars, balustrade and sidelights beside the door.



For an index of other styles that can be found in the Perinton area go to the Architectural Styles page in the History section.



The center entrance at 54 Potter Place has sidelights, a curved portico supported by columns and an urn centered above the door.



The Dutch Colonial Revival is a sub-type of Colonial Revival. The side-gabled version was most frequently built between 1920 - 1930. This home at 5 Galusha Street has a first story roof overhang, and an oval roof held with brackets that mirrors the fanlight over the front entrance.


This image is from an advertisement for L. E. Rowell, Builder, that appeared in the "Souvenir of Fairport, NY Old Home Week" book, published in 1908. 



A very similar house, just around the corner on 49 Nelson Street, but with the entrance on the left and a bank of windows in the front. 



Detail of the fanlight windows on a home at 71 Dewey. Often homes of this era have full fanlight windows lighting the attic space.



The home at 71 Dewey has a center entrance and a one-story side wing. Note that the roof-line of the wing comes across the front of the house similar to, but, less dominant an architectural feature than those on the Dutch Colonial Revivals pictured above. 



This door at 19 Fifth Avenue has a beautiful broken pediment with an urn in the center. 


Other Colonials:

8 Fifth Avenue
(See this home for some inside features and an eyebrow window) 

5 Clifford Street

4 Lake Crescent Drive
(An example with a second story overhang)

21 Fair Oaks Drive

170 Hulburt Road 

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ARCHIVED August 2023. Please visit for current information.