Paul Baker Touart
Fairmount Rumbley Road (MD 361), Landonville, Somerset County
Schoolridge Farm is a two-story two-bay side hall/double pile brick house which rests on a partially excavated cellar and is covered by a steeply pitched wood shingle roof. The Flemish bond brick walls have a rare banding of light and dark brick; this is especially evident on the east gable end. Extending to the rear (north), is a one-story frame kitchen wing, and to the west is a modern 1 1/2-story three-bay frame addition. The south facade of the main block is divided into two bays with an entrance in the west bay. The six-panel door has a semicircular transom divided by radiating muntins. The east bay holds a 12/12 sash window topped by a stuccoed jack arch. Covering the first floor is a hip-roofed screened porch. Two 12/8 sash windows light the second floor, and are also topped with jack arches. The box cornice stretches across the base of the roof with a crown molding and dentiled bed molding. The east gable end is three bays wide, with 12/12 sash on the first floor, 12/8 on the second, and two six-pane windows lighting the attic. A gable-end chimney rises out of the east wall and is finished with a corbeled cap. The north side is partially covered by the single-story frame kitchen wing, which has an interior end brick chimney. Two 12/8 sash windows pierce the second floor of the brick house. The west end is largely covered by the 1 1/2-story frame addition. Two 6/6 sash gable-roofed dormer windows light the second floor, while the front wall surface is divided into three bays, each with a 6/6 sash window. The remaining sides of the wing are finished in the same manner. The gable end of the brick house has one 12/12 sash window on the first floor and two 12/8 sash windows on the second. The attic is lighted by two six-pane windows, as on the east end. On the interior, the front door opens into a side hall with quarter-turn stair. Two unequal-sized rooms are located to the right of the hall and heated by corner hearths. Each room is fitted with Federal period mantels, chair rail and baseboards. The second floor is divided in the same manner and finished in a simpler way. The attic stair is enclosed. The yard immediately east of the house is enclosed with a fence and contains a 19th century frame smokehouse, modern utility building and a screened-in gazebo. The first two buildings have a simple gable roof and a pyramidal roof covers the gazebo. Standing farther east is a gambrel-roofed barn. The Ballard family cemetery is located due south of the house and is surrounded by an ankle-high fence. A small log outbuilding standing on the south side of the small pond was moved to the property.
Schoolridge Farm derives its significance from its architecture. The house is a fine example of the Federal period plantation houses found in Somerset County, standing on the first appreciable rise in terrain above the marshes of the Annemessex River. Both the exterior and interior retain most of the original c. 1800 architectural fabric. The mantels, doors, chair rail and stair are well-executed Federal period forms. In plan, the house presents an unusual modification of the basic side hall/double pile form, in that the passage contains a transverse partition to the rear of the stair, resulting in a four-room configuration on the first floor.