Meet Kevin Hogan
A single dad, Realtor, music aficionado, gourmet cook, University of Maryland grad who is intelligent, honest and fun. I love technology, black and white movies, my kids, and making buying or selling a home easy for people. Read more >>
The climate and history of the Southern United States have influenced the architectural styles of homes in this area. From Colonial American styles to the magnificent antebellum mansions to the shotgun shacks of freed slaves, there are a wide variety of architectural styles. European influences are seen in many of the architectural styles employed. This is coupled with the need for functional, low cost housing. These are some of the most common architectural styles you find in the American south.
You see many variations on the cottage style house across the South. Their compact size was perfect for rural and semi-rural locals. Some of the most popular styles employed are the Queen Anne, Georgian, English and bungalow. The square floor plans, simple porches and use of dormers to increase attic space are some of the common features of all cottage styles.
Most associated with New Orleans, you find examples of the shotgun style house scattered across the rural landscape from the Carolinas to Texas. The hallmarks of this style are a simple design and effective use of space. Designed on a straight line with each room placed behind the next, they had no hallways and were built to be functional. The high ceilings paired with the straight design provided cooling in the summer and the front porch was a place for friends and family to gather.
Common on the east coast from Virgina into Georgia, the Federal style is one of the oldest architectural styles in the south. Taking its design cues from the Renaissance in Europe, the facades are symmetrical, the exterior is brick or wood, and they are typically found in cities or towns. There are three types of examples found today. The smaller versions are seen as single family homes in affluent sections of cities. Larger structures that employ this style are mansions or churches outside of mid-size towns and public buildings in cities, like courthouses and government building.
You find this style dotting the length of Florida, but other instances do appear as far north as South Carolina and west as Texas. This is an amalgamation of Spanish Renaissance and Colonial styles with some beaux-arts elements added in. Notable for its archways, balconies and cornices, the exterior is identified by stucco walls and red roof tiles. The use of patios and large open courtyards reflects the climate of the deep south, where outdoor living was possible year round.
Southern architectural styles of homes have, like the rest of the country, moved with the popular fashion of different time periods. There are examples of most styles of architecture found in other parts of the country, but there are some styles that have endured. The most common styles reflect a desire to combine design with functionality, using the mild climate to incorporate outdoor living in the winter or forcing designs that provide relief from the summer heat. As you travel from Virginia into the Southern United States, notice the many common threads of architectural style across the landscape.