Michael F. Dwyer
1070 & 1080, Copperstone Court, Rockville, Montgomery County
The Dawson Farm consists of two dwellings. The 1874 Dawson Farmhouse is a 2 1/2-story rectangular frame building, 3 bays wide and two bays deep with a steeply pitched gable roof. Facing east, its front facade is clad in German siding, and features a Gothic-influenced cross gable. The transomed entrance is located in the northernmost bay. Most windows hold 2/2 sash; the large pointed-arched window in the cross gable holds two panes in its arch, and 2/2 sash below. The north gable end of the building had an exterior chimney, which appears to have been removed, while an interior chimney rises from the south gable end. In 1984 a 1 1/2-story shed-roofed addition was attached to the rear facade of the house when the building underwent restoration. Southeast of the 1874 house stands a large 2 1/2-story hip-roofed frame house dating to 1912. Four bays wide and seven deep, the 1912 house reflects early-20th century eclecticism in the use of Queen Anne-derived massing and half-timber detailing in combination with mission-style elements such as broad porches, overhanging eaves, a Spanish parapet over the entrance, and stucco finish. On the northeast (front) facade, an open porch wraps around the southwest side. A hood supported on curved brackets and topped with a Spanish parapet projects over the porch steps and defines the entrance, which holds a wooden door with beveled-glass panels in a surround with sidelights and transom. Windows throughout the house are arranged in singles and pairs, and hold double-hung sash with three or four vertical lights over a large single pane. Each elevation of the hipped roof has a cross gable holding a recessed double window and embellished with half-timber ornament. The interior is detailed in the Craftsman mode, and features dark wooden paneling, arched openings, sliding doors, and built-in furniture.
The Dawson Farm is significant both for its architecture and for its historical association with a prominent family. The 1912 house is a rare example in the Rockville area of an early-20th century residence embodying the stylistic eclecticism characteristic of architecture of the period. Its massing and half-timber detailing are reminiscent of the Queen Anne style; the broad porches, Spanish parapet, overhanging eaves, and stucco finish all evoke a Mission-style feeling. An excellent Craftsman interior completes the catalogue of stylistic influences embodied in the house. The 1874 farmhouse also on the property contributes to the Farm's significance by reflecting an earlier stage in the economic and social development of the residents. The farm is also significant for its association with the Dawson family, whose members played important roles in local politics and commerce for several generations.