James House

Architect unknown



The James House is sited midway up a gently sloping plot overlooking a pond and a stream. The original house was a one-story-plus-basement structure with a square footprint. The house currently has a complicated roofline with a gable roof with deep eaves over the original section of the house. The walls are clad with painted vertical tongue and groove wood siding. The basement is fully exposed at the south and east sides of the building and wood decks are found off of the first-floor spaces. The two-car garage at the basement level is incorporated in the square footprint of the original section of the house. Floor-to-ceiling glass walls open the living rooms in the house to the landscape beyond.


The James House was constructed around 1965 and designed by an unknown architect.

In 1962, Miles B. Olson acquired the property from Robert Roles, likely the same Robert Roles who was a prominent builder in town. It appears that Olson died in 1963. A note on the assessor property field card dated 1 July 1963 states, "Remove dev. disc.," likely referring to a developer's discount on the property assessment. This suggests that Olson was a developer. In 1964, Phillip A. James et. al. purchased the property. According to the assessor, the house was constructed in 1965. The original house had a square footprint with wood decks wrapping around the south and east sides.

In 1971, Alfred E. and Glenna Fischer purchased the property. In 1975, the Fischers added a one-story addition with vertical wood siding and a gable roof; a gazebo with a hexagonal plan was also constructed and the decks were extended around the house to integrate the new construction. The Fischers also created the pond on the property. The 1975 work was designed by architect Chris Moomaw. Sometime between 1975 and 1990, an attached two-story round tower capped with a wide floating roof was constructed adjacent to this addition. In 1990, a new enclosed porch was constructed at the northeast corner of the house and an entry foyer was built at the basement level adjacent to the garage. In 1994, the assessor lists a permit for a new side entry, but the location of this alteration is unclear.

National Trust for Historic Preservation, 2009.