History To-Go: Architecture

For as long as people have lived in North Carolina they’ve been building homes and other structures, but styles and materials have changed a lot over time! American Indians in the area lived in houses framed with wooden poles tied together. Reed mats or tree bark sheets went over the poles to create walls and a roof. During the Colonial Era, many Europeans were just beginning to settle in the area and needed to build shelters that were less about looks and more about practicality – especially staying cool in the hot, humid climate. They built homes of wood from North Carolina’s abundant forests with high ceilings, outdoor kitchens, breezeways, and porches. Most of these houses were done in Georgian (1750-Early 1800s) and Federal (1780-1830s) styles that prioritized simplicity, symmetry, and nature. As the 1800s continued and the railroad expanded, building materials were able to be delivered from further distances and in greater numbers. During the mid-1850s, houses began to become more elegant. Most of these houses were done in the Greek Revival or Gothic Revival styles. Many Greek Revival styles homes are built to look like temples in Greece and typically include front columns, while many Gothic Revival styles used stone, glass, iron, and steel materials. Gothic Revival style can often be seen in church construction. Beginning in the 1860s, the Second-Empire style was designated as the first official style of the Victorian Era. It featured square shaped buildings, symmetry, and modern materials like glass and iron as decoration. In the 1880s, Queen Anne styles became popular. These styles were even more decorative and ornamental, with stained glass, wrap-around porches, classical columns, and textured walls all being common features.

September's "History To-Go" box features Architecture! You can come by the museum starting Tuesday, September 5, 2023 to pick up a box (limit 2 per family). Limited supplies, so come early!  You can select the links below to access the box contents if you cannot get to the museum to pick yours up!

Thanks to funding from the Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex Foundation Inc, and the Arts Council of Fayetteville we are offering FREE "History To-Go", take home craft kits. 

NEXT MONTH: Halloween