Popular in residential construction between 1860-1890, the Stick style bridges earlier Gothic styles with the more Victorian Queen Anne.The Stick style was inspired by Medieval English half-timbered construction that had visible structural elements, steeply pitched roofs, and projecting gables. With the Stick style, a pattern of heavy wood trim on the exterior walls suggests an internal structure of post and beams but was merely applied decoration with no true relation to the underlying frame construction.In reality, these houses were wood frame with clapboarding between the simulated beams.
Characteristics of Stick style homes include steeply pitched roofs, overhanging eaves, decorative trusses in gables and dormers, and wooden wall cladding interrupted by “stickwork” patterns raised from the wall surfaces. This stickwork applied to the wall surfaces is meant to symbolize the structural skeleton of the home.
Stick style homes can be found in several neighborhoods including the Andover Street, Rogers Fort Hill Park, South Common, Washington Square, and Wilder Street Historic Districts. In the Wilder Street Historic District, one of Lowell’s most ornate Stick style homes can be found at 340 Wilder Street, the William Bascom House (1884). This home also includes an elaborate one story porch that spans the entire façade and is an impressive and unique display of jigsawed and turned woodwork.
William Bascom House (1884), 340 Wilder Street
Prescott Gates House (ca. 1880), 442 East Merrimack Street