Tag Archives: italianate house

Twelve Days of Christmas Day Five

Brick Italianate House, Ninga, MB

 

Buff Brick, Ninga

 

Reid Dickie

My summer travels took me to places I’d never been before, like Ninga, Manitoba. Not ninja, Ninga, apparently the Chippewa word for mother.

This lonesome seemingly deserted buff brick house caught my attention and I took one picture of it, the one above. So everything I say is based on seeing this one elevation.

The roofline is the foremost Italianate feature. Its low pitch hip jousted by the sweet angles of the matching gables evokes a smooth and gentle, almost erotic rhythm against the prairie sky. It sings!

The under-eave colour appears to have been reddish brown, which would have contrasted richly with the pale buff brick and feel right at home under the milky brown of the shingles. The pairs of tall windows under the gables have simple brick headers. The bricks overall are laid in common running bond.

The main floor conveys several elements of Italianate style such as bay windows  It appears to have two of them but closer inspection reveals the one on the left of brick construction is incorporated into the body of the house and features the main entrance.  The one on the right is a wooden addition, a back porch painted in trim colour.  The bays are connected by a narrow but elegant verandah.

Oh, the verandah: the brackets are a contrasting green to the reddish trim. The low pitch of the roof in sighing reverence to Ninga, for surethe roofline above and the trio of turned squared-away pillars doing their important work slowly succumb to the creep of the foliage, already obscuring the stairs and entwining the bench against the wall. Although the house remains in reasonably good appearance, the straggling strands of long-dead Christmas lights and the invading overgrowth herald its tomorrow, its future tangled in the vines and vicissitudes that encroach on its presence, that threaten its being. Only the prairie wind can determine how apt this all is.

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Filed under 12 Days of Christmas 2012, Heritage Buildings, Houses, Manitoba Heritage

Manitoba Heritage House

Reid Dickie

Italianate House, 135 Hamilton Street, Neepawa, MB

Local contractors Jones and Fusee constructed this fine Italianate house in Neepawa in 1900. It was built for J. H. Davidson, the manager of the flour mill, and his wife Dr. Mary Davidson, Neepawa’s first female physician. Although the main floor porch has been altered, the balance of the pile retains many original features. Notice the delicate iron cresting on the roofs. There are matching Palladian windows on the east and west dormers of the house, which is built of locally made buff brick. The colour scheme of the house is similar to the original popular colours of the time.

 The second floor central bay sports a flamboyant gable with a sweeping curve, bull’s-eye window with floral motif in blue and white glass, oversized brackets and fish scale shingling. Neepawa has at least three other houses whose architecture has Italianate influence but this house is the style’s finest example in town.

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Filed under Heritage Buildings, Houses, Local History, Prairie People