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My 1889 Princess Anne

Hey everyone! I've watched the show for years, but now that I bought an old house just last year I have some general questions that I need help with.

Quick run down of the house.

  • Built in 1889
  • Originally a single family home
  • Split and merged numerous times over the years
  • Was a rental for many years so much of the original charm is gone
  • Currently a single family home and my primary residence

So what I need help with at the moment is trying to revamp the front exterior. We have a housing committee in the area that approved a front 18" retaining wall & 3' iron fence, but I need some other ideas.

The mansard roof with aluminum gutters is horrible. It makes the porch roof look too small. The porch roof is rolled asphalt and needs to be replaced, it's leaking. I was thinking of adding box gutters and swapping out for a EPDM roof.

I would love to put cedar shake singles up on that third floor (notice the halloween decoration still in the window) :D

The front of the house just seems so simple. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!


Re: My 1889 Princess Anne

It's not a mansard roof, it's a sloped parapet wall clad with shingles. Who knows there may have always been a walking deck atop the porch, and the off-putting parapet is a later accretion or it is missing a balancing element like a cast iron crest railing that would make sense of it.

I'd call it a tri-gable ell house rather than a Princess Anne (supposedly Queen Anne Vic. sans exuberant surface ornament).

Re: My 1889 Princess Anne

It's amazing what a couple changes make! Since I posted that original picture we:

  • Put in a briar hill retaining wall
  • Cast iron fence (made locally)
  • Redid the entire porch roof including:
  • [LIST]

  • New OSB decking on top and parapet
  • New rubber roof, replacing rolled asphalt
  • Corregated aluminum downspouts
  • New shingles
  • New custom made drip edge
  • Built box gutters to size using an old paint line that was on the brick
  • Painted eveything to match the house
  • Still need to put up the bead board ceiling.


I personally think the porch roof sets off the entire house. If you look at the before picture it just didn't look right.

I still have a couple ideas for the front.

  • Landscaping
  • Post light on left lawn
  • "Fish-scale" the front gable

Any other ideas?


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