11 Most Endangered Historic Places
H.H. Richardson House
Year Listed: 2007
Location: Brookline, Massachusetts
Threat: Deterioration, Development
Located in Brookline, MA, the H.H. Richardson House is the last home and studio of famed 19th-century American architect Henry Hobson (H.H.) Richardson (1838-1886)—the creator of Boston's much loved landmark Trinity Church, among many other well-known buildings. The house on Cottage Street stands in the Green Hill National Historic District, near the home of Frederick Law Olmsted, the great landscape architect who was Richardson's close friend and frequent collaborator. The house not only sustained Richardson's draftsmen and family but also served as a center of Boston culture. From here, Richardson produced some of his best-known work, including Harvard University's Sever Hall, the New York State Capitol, Albany City Hall, the Allegheny County Courthouse and Jail in Pittsburgh, the William Watts Sherman House in Newport and the Glessner House in Chicago. The architectural details that Richardson added to his own house indicate that he used his home as a design laboratory to experiment with features he later incorporated into projects for his clients. Richardson is the only American architect to have a style named for him: "Richardsonian Romanesque," which swept the country in the late 19th century and was also widely copied in Europe.