Photo credit: Reproduced from Library of Congress Collections, E.H. Pickering , 09/1936

Property Name: Burleigh
Date Listed: 11/30/1982
Inventory No.: HO-23
Location: 3950, White Rose Way, Ellicott City, Howard County

Description: Burleigh is a c. 1810 Federal-style brick dwelling, whose two-story gable-roofed main block is five bays wide by three bays deep and is connected by a one-story, two-bay brick hyphen to a two-story, two-bay, hip-roofed brick wing. All sections of the building's principal (east) facade are laid in Flemish bond. Narrow windows of 9/9 sash on the first floor and 9/6 on the second are surmounted by brick jack arches and set on plain block sills. Three gable-roofed dormers rise above the modillioned cornice. The building has a center-hall plan; Federal entrances with elaborate fanlights and sidelights oppose each other in the central bay of the east and west facades. The tracery of the fanlights depicts a rising sun at the east entrance and a setting sun at the west; the sun motif is repeated in the interior woodwork, which also employs such Federal ornament as oval and circular forms, swags, chevrons, attenuated half-columns, and elliptical arches. The main block has two flush brick chimneys on its north end, and one on its south end, while the wing contains one central chimney. The main block contains three gable-roofed dormers on its east facade, and has a modillion cornice with returns, while the hyphen and wing have simple boxed cornices. A great deal of original woodwork survives intact, including mantelpieces, window and door trim, chair rails, paneling, six-panel doors and staircase. The house is located at the end of a long wooded drive. Also on the landscaped grounds are a stone smokehouse; a much-altered log, stone, and frame "gatehouse" or "cottage," and another log outbuilding, as well as an early-20th century bathhouse, swimming pool, and tennis court.

Significance: Burleigh derives its significance from two major sources. First, Burleigh embodies the distinctive characteristics of the Federal style in architecture, and is one of the finest examples of this style in Maryland. Many of its original Federal-period features remain intact, such as two fine entrances, each with traceried fanlight and sidelights, and skillfully executed and well preserved woodwork in many rooms, including mantelpieces, window and door trim, chair rails, paneling, hall staircase, and six-paneled doors. The woodwork in the entrances and throughout the interior is carefully coordinated through the repetition of patterns and decorative motifs typical of the period, most importantly the image of the sun, which serves as a unifying theme. Burleigh, therefore, possesses high artistic value, in its design concept and in the quality of its craftsmanship, and is well preserved. Second, the history of Burliegh is associated with the lives of members of the Hammond family, one of Maryland's most prominent early families. The probable builder, Colonel Rezin Hammond (1745-1809) was active in Revolutionary War politics in Annapolis, serving as a member of the Annapolis Committee of Safety and the Committee of Correspondence. He also led a party in the 1774 burning of the British ship the PEGGY STEWART in Annapolis. After the war, he remained active in state political affairs and was a member of the state legislature for many years. Colonel Hammond acted as guardian for his grandnephew Denton Hammond (1785-1813), and probably built Burleigh for him in the first decade of the 19th century. After the death in 1813 of Denton Hammond, a planter, the house was owned by Denton's son Colonel Matthias Hammond until his death in 1882. Burleigh was then owned by Clara, the Colonel's wife and his daughter Grace until Grace's death in 1928 when the property was put up for sale after 125 years of ownership by the Hammond family.




close