Gablefront house

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A gablefront house with bay window
Gablefront house with porch

A gablefront house, also known as a gable front house or front gable house, is a vernacular (or "folk") house type in which the gable is facing the street or entrance side of the house.[1] They were built in large numbers throughout the United States primarily between the early 19th century and 1920. A gablefront cottage is a smaller variant, consisting of either a single story or a story-and-a-half. They were typically used as working-class dwellings, most being rather simple in design. However, they may contain some ornamentation such as brackets around the doorways or roof line. Many gablefront houses contain front porches.[2]


The gablefront house developed after 1825 and coincided with the popularity of the Greek Revival style, which placed emphasis on the gable-end of the house in the form of a pediment; often associated with Greek temples.[3]

The gablefront house allows the narrow part of the house to face the street, usually on a rectangular lot. The gablefront house became a uniquely American folk house type. The gablefront house cropped up in styles ranging from Greek Revival, to Gothic Revival, to Queen Anne, to a simpler vernacular style home.[4] The gablefront house form remained popular into the early 20th century.[5]


Gabled ell[edit]

One variation of the gablefront house is the gabled ell. The gabled ell incorporated a side gable, which was typically added-on to the house. The add-on was usually in order to obtain additional space, light and cross-ventilation.


Another variation of this house form is the T-plan house. The T-plan house consists of gable-ends on either side of the front-facing main gable.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ American Houses: A Field Guide to the Architecture of the Home, 2004
  2. ^ "Architectural Styles, City of Red Wing" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-12-30. Retrieved 2014-01-26.
  3. ^ Architectural Styles, City of Fort Wayne
  4. ^ West Central Neighborhood Association
  5. ^ America's Favorite Homes: Mail-order Catalogues as a Guide to Popular Early 20th-century Houses, 1990

External links[edit]