West Franklin Street Historic District

VLR Listing Date


NRHP Listing Date


NRHP Reference Number

72001528; 09000731

An 1867 annexation brought West Franklin Street west to Lombardy Street into the Richmond city limits, and sophisticated town houses soon went up. The blocks from Monroe Park to Monument Avenue retain a colorful progression of architectural styles, including Second Empire, Italianate, Romanesque, Queen Anne, and Georgian Revival, with an underlying harmony from uniform scale and repetition of materials. Individually outstanding houses in the West Franklin Street Historic District are the 1888 Romanesque Revival Ginter mansion (901 W. Franklin), home of tobacco magnate Maj. Lewis Ginter, and the opulent 1906 Scott-Bocock House (909 W. Franklin), an adaptation of the Petit Trianon by Noland and Baskervill. The district’s oldest house is the Ritter-Hickock House (821 W. Franklin), built ca. 1850. The Crenshaw House (919 W. Franklin) is significant for its association with the founding of the Equal Suffrage League of Virginia in 1909. The most architecturally individual town house is the eclectic Millhiser House (916 W. Franklin), a Romanesque/Queen Anne confection designed by William M. Poindexter. Many of the houses in the West Franklin Street Historic District are now part of Virginia Commonwealth University.

In 2009, the West Franklin Street Historic District’s boundaries were extended to cover one city block along the original northern border, comprising West Grace Street and two cross streets (N. Harrison and Shafer). The area, originally mostly residential, has evolved as former residences have been converted to commercial use and more modern buildings have filled in the block. The buildings in the expansion area, constructed from 1870 to 1920, exhibit the same characteristics as the original district, while being somewhat more modest in scale.
[VLR Listed: 6/18/2009; NRHP Listed: 9/16/2009]

Last Updated: January 4, 2024

Many properties listed in the registers are private dwellings and are not open to the public, however many are visible from the public right-of-way. Please be respectful of owner privacy.

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

For additional information Read

Nomination Form

2009 Boundary Increase Nomination


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