William G. Low House

The William G. Low House was a seaside cottage at 3 Low Lane in Bristol, Rhode Island.

William G. Low House
1962 photo from the Historical American Buildings Survey
General information
TypeSeaside cottage
Architectural styleShingle style
Address3 Low Lane
Town or cityBristol, Rhode Island
Construction started1886
ClientWilliam G. Low
Design and construction
ArchitectCharles McKim
Architecture firmMcKim, Mead & White
Known forAn extreme example of the Shingle style

It was designed in 1886-87 by architect Charles McKim of the New York City firm, McKim, Mead & White. With its distinctive single 140-foot-long (43 m) gable it embodied many of the tenets of Shingle Style architecture — horizontality, simplified massing and geometry, minimal ornamentation, the blending of interior and exterior spaces.

The architectural historian Vincent Scully saw it as "at once a climax and a kind of conclusion" for McKim, since its "prototypal form ... was almost immediately to be abandoned for the more conventionally conceived columns and pediments of McKim, Mead, and White's later buildings."[1]

Just before it was demolished in 1962, the house was documented with measured drawings and photographs by the Historic American Buildings Survey.[2]

Wrote architectural historian Leland Roth, "Although little known in its own time, the Low House has come to represent the high mark of the Shingle Style."[3]


  1. ^ Scully, Vincent (1971) [1955]. The Shingle Style and the Stick Style. New Haven: Yale University Press. p. 153. ISBN 9780300015195.
  2. ^ "Low, William G., House (supplemental materials)" (PDF). Historic American Buildings Survey. Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress. May 1975.
  3. ^ Roth, Leland M. (2001). American Architecture: A History. Boulder, Colo.: Westview Press. p. 246. ISBN 9780813336626.

Coordinates: 41°38′53″N 71°15′48″W / 41.64806°N 71.26333°W / 41.64806; -71.26333

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