Jennifer K. Cosham
Ludwick Rudisel Tannery House
65, Frederick Street (MD 194), Taneytown, Carroll County
The main block of the Ludwick Rudisel Tannery House, which sits on a coursed fieldstone foundation, is constructed of brick laid in Flemish bond on the front (north) façade and American or common bond on all other façades. This section is five bays in length, two deep, with an original slate roof. Attached to the southeast corner of the house is a two-story, two-bay-long brick kitchen, with standing seam tin gable roof. Both sections have massive internal chimneys. The front (north ) façade features a 20th century one-story porch, supported by four Ionic columns on brick piers, which in turn is supported by a concrete base. The porch stretches across the central three bays. The six-panel front door with five-light transom is original, and is now covered by a modern glass storm door. All windows are original and contain 9/6 lights, and are double hung. A wooden box cornice with delicate frieze of alternating blank metopes and fluted blocks graces the eave line. The gable ends (east and west façades) contain identical fenestration and decoration. First and second floor windows are identical to those previously described and also have splayed brick lintels and wooden sills. Two attic windows, each with original 4/2 double hung sash, can be found in each gable, and light the attic space. The rear (south) façade is constructed in a different manner than the front façade. Here the coursed rubble foundation wall is built up to a one story level. In the first floor of the southwest corner can be found another original 9/6 window. Aligned above this window on the floor above is another identical window. Moving towards the center of the façade, a second 9/6 window is found. A third such window is found directly above the shed roofed enclosed addition (originally a porch and whose first floor now functions as a laundry and the enclosed entranceway to the rear of the house) which now intersects with the rear façade and the west façade of the brick kitchen. This enclosed addition is covered with weatherboarding, and contains modern 6/6 windows and a storm door, and has a shed roof with composition shingles. The brick kitchen sits on a stone foundation and is laid in American bond, with a cornice consisting of two rows of corbeled header bricks.
The Ludwick Rudisel Tannery House is an excellent example of a typical Carroll County early 19th century farmhouse, its type popularized as the "I" house by Henry Glassie in his seminal book Pattern in the Material Folk Culture of the Eastern United States. Carroll County architecture during this period reflects the interaction of two regional style types, the first, from the mid Atlantic region (representing a composite English/German tradition) and the second, from the southern tidewater area (representing the English tradition). The result of this interaction is a house form exemplified by the Rudisel house--a two story dwelling with a central hall, one room deep and two in length, with internal gable end chimneys. The Rudisel house reflects a house in transition, with Georgian massing and fine Federal detailing, but also with a decorative naivete depicted through the use of marbleizing, graining, and other folk decoration on mantels, newel posts, and balusters. The house is also significant as it remained in the possession of the original owner's heirs until 1977.