Virginia State Seal

Virginia Department of Historic Resources

009-0031 Three Otters

Three Otters
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For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 07/07/1970

NRHP Listing Date 09/15/1970

NPS property number 70000785

One of Virginia’s most distinctive examples of country rural Greek Revival domestic architecture, this dwelling illustrates how the classical architectural vocabulary could be adapted to embellish fully modern, specifically American forms. Abel Beach Nichols, a Connecticut merchant, settled in Virginia in 1820 and built the house some ten years later. Although its designer/builder has not been identified, much of the detailing, inside and out, was faithfully reproduced from Asher Benjamin’s The Practical House Carpenter (1830), a popular pattern book of the period. A unique feature is the series of small windows in the metopes that, when opened, form a ventilation system. Other features of interest include the marbleized stair, the Flemish bond brickwork, and the ruins of an original brick chicken house.


Abbreviations:
VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

Updated April 4, 2018