Alexander Gilmore House

Alexander Gilmore House
Alexander Gilmore House
Alexander Gilmore House
Alexander Gilmore House
Alexander Gilmore House
Alexander Gilmore House
4. "Gingerbread Houses" with Alexander Gilmore House (left)
5. "Gingerbread House" with Alexander Gilmore House (far left)
Built:1853 or 1854
316 Main Street
Calais, Maine

National Register


Architectural Styles

  • Gothic Revival
SCA, p.9:

ALEXANDER GILMORE HOUSE. This is the earliest of three Gothic Revival style houses on Main Street. Alexander Gilmore, a shipbuilder in Calais, bought the land for his house in February 1853. He hired Matthew Stead, of New Brunswick, as architect, and Asher Bassford, of Calais, as the Master Builder. The house was built in 1853 or 1854 and is an excellent example of Gothic Revival architecture. This two and onehalf story wooden clapboarded home has decorative bargeboards on its gables and along its porch framing. The roof is steeply pitched with two cross gables, in front, and each gable peak is capped with a finial. The arched woodwork on the porch is repeated in -the second story porch on the South Side, and the center front second story of the house has three rectangular stained glass windows. A three story ell was added to the back of the house in the 1920s to 1930s, and in 1932 the barn was removed. Extensive renovation was done to the right side of the house after it was severely damaged by the fire in the late 1930s. Most of the decorative woodwork stands intact from its early days. AFN, FAB; JCB

• From National Register of Historic Places Continuation Sheet

10. Alexander Gilmore House, c. 1850 - C 316 Main Street. Matthew Stead, Architect Asher Bassford, Builder N. R. 6/4/79

This two-and-a-half-story house is of frame construction with crossgabled roofs, two brick chimneys, and weatherboard siding. A first-story porch, supported by slender posts (connected by Gothic arches in wood), covers all of the southeast-facing facade and most of the southwest side of the dwelling. The facade is three bays wide with a central entrance. To either side of the doorway is a six-over-six window. The second floor features a central balustraded balcony and doorway, flanked by narrow fourover-four windows. This balcony is covered by a projecting gable, which is ornately decorated with a carved barge-board, finial, and pendant. The southwest side of the house is hardly less important than the facade. This is dominated by two gable ends flanking another central entrance. Here again, elaborate barge-boards, finials, and pendants are present. Fenestration is six-over-six, with labelled moldings in the first and second stories. The single window in the half-story of each gable is four-overfour. The central bay over the north entrance consists of a cluster of three four-over-four windows. The northwest and northeast sides of the building, which face the st. Croix River, are of secondary significance, but here too the trim is ornate. A'two-story ell extends northeastward from the northeast wall of the house. The Gilmore House was built in 1850 by Asher Bassford from plans drawn the New Brunswick Architect Matthew Stead. Its original owner was Alexander Gilmore. Born in Belfast, Ireland in 1821, Gilmore emigrated to New Brunswick in 1838 and shortly thereafter appeared in Calais where he rapidly established himself as a highly prosperous merchant. His first wife, for whom the house was very likely built, died in 1854 and Gilmore remarried in 1856. Two children were born in Calais. At some later time he moved to New York where he died, date unknown. The steep pitched double gable arrangement with recessed tripartite window between on the southwest facade is very similar to the 1849 Henry Boody House in Brunswick (N. R. 2/24/75) designed by Gervaise Wheeler and published in Andrew Jackson Downing's The Architecture of Country Houses.

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