Thursday, November 12, 2009

Twin Houses

Photograph courtesy of Discover-Neighborhood-History

Compare the house pictured above to the photograph of the Bush House Museum in the right sidebar. Although the photographs are taken from different angles, it's easy to see that these houses closely resemble each other.

The picture above shows the Adolph House, built for Samuel Adolph and his wife Mary. Samuel Adolph was born in Prussia about 1835 and came to Salem in 1867. He founded a brewery and later constructed a block of buildings on the south side of State Street, including a saloon.

In 1878, Adolph commissioned Wilbur Boothby, the architect of the Bush House, to build a suburban farmhouse on five acres of land near the State Penitentiary. The house still stands in its original location on the northwest corner of 25th and State Streets.

Did Adolph specifically request a house that echoed the newly-built Bush home? Or did Boothby simply specialize in the Italianate style he had seen in his youth on the east coast? Either way, the family resemblance is evident in the facade -- which is almost identical to the Bush House -- as well as in smaller exterior details such as the window moldings, the gabled roofline, and the carved panels along the eaves.

The similarities continue inside the house, though on a smaller scale. In particular, the staircase, though narrower and steeper than the one at the Bush House, nevertheless includes the same newel post and balusters, and the same carved detail on each riser. There's also a black and white photo of the house in its early years, with the penitentiary buildings visible across the fields.

Samuel Adolph died in 1893, but the house remained in the family until the 1970s as the home of Adolph's son-in-law, Isidore Greenbaum, and his family. Like the Bush House, the Adolph House was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. It now houses professional offices.

N.B.: Should you choose to admire the Bush House's twin in person, please respect the occupants' privacy.

1 comment:

Capital Taps said...

The kinship between the two houses is remarkable!

For more on Sam Adolph, and his role in Salem brewing history, see this recent note on Cooke Stationery and the Adolph Block.

Boothby, too, for his role with the Water Company is very interesting.