Derived from Italian Renaissance models, this style reflects a restrained Classical expression whose traditions were deeply rooted in the ancient architectures of the Western world.

Classical styles experienced widespread popularity in North America after they were used to great effect for the buildings of the Chicago World’s Fair of 1893. Although seen locally prior to 1913, the greatest influence of the Neo-Classical on houses was during the 1920s and 30s. Structural details often refer to Classical temples and civic architecture. Houses were symmetrically massed, lacking applied surface ornamentation while retaining traditional Classical features.

What to look for….

  • architectural detail mimics Italian Renaissance precedents
  • full height portico, or else a balustraded balcony above entryway
  • giant order columns
  • plain unornamented surfaces
  • low-pitched roof
  • front gable often designed to resemble a Classical pediment
  • Palladian and decorative mullioned windows