Susan G. Pearl
603, Largo Road (MD 202), Largo, Prince Georges County
Mount Lubentia is a large hip-roofed Federal-style Flemish bond brick dwelling built c. 1798, possibly on the foundation of an earlier dwelling. Facing east towards Largo Road, the house consists of a 2 1/2-story main block with a two-story kitchen wing attached to the north. The principal entrance, in the center bay of the five-bay front facade, exhibits elegant Federal detail in its fanlight, keystone arch, and pedimented and fluted Ionic pilasters. The entrance on the west elevation is similar, but less formal, with identical pilasters, fanlight, and molded arch, but no pediment. Both entrances are sheltered by three-bay, one-story, hip-roofed porches. The east elevation porch is supported by four wooden Tuscan columns, while the porch on the west side has only chamfered posts with capitals and bases, with a balustrade railing brought from nearby Woodlawn. A photograph which dates before 1895 shows a Victorian porch with jigsawn brackets on the front of the house. This was probably built c. 1883. The house has a molded water table, and windows are surmounted by splayed jack arches, deeper in the first story than on the second. First floor windows hold 9/6 sash, while those on the second floor are 6/6. All windows once had louvered shutters, now removed. The house is four bays deep, with the two western bays on the north side covered by the wing. The hip roof is covered in standing-seam metal. In the east plane of the roof are two small gable-roofed 6/6 sash dormer windows. There is one similar dormer in each of the north and south planes of the roof. The largest and earliest dormer is centered in the west pane of the roof; it also encloses a 6/6 window. Pre-1912 photographs show only the west dormer. By 1930 the two east dormers had been added, as had the cresting at the top of the roof. There are two wide interior chimneys, one rising from each end of the ridge, and aligned with the second and fourth bays of the long facades. The balustraded "widow's walk" defines the area between the two tall chimneys. The eaves of the hip roof are ornamented with a boxed cornice, with bed and crown molding, beneath which is a plain frieze painted white. Interior detail includes particularly fine wooden mantels, crossetted door and window surrounds, and a graceful curved staircase. The immediate grounds of the mansion include a 19th century corncrib and stable, and later shed/garage, as well as an 18th century octagonal dairy which was moved to its present location from the nearby "Graden" plantation.
As an elegantly detailed Federal-style brick house of grand proportion, Mount Lubentia represents the residence of a successful planter of the late 18th century in Prince George's County. It is one of four houses built in the county in this period that were valued at $1500 or more. Of these four, only Mount Lubentia remains significantly unaltered. Architectural features of particular note include a graceful turned staircase in the entrance hall and elaborately decorated mantels and cabinets in the principal rooms. The other three houses were extensively removed in the 19th century. Also on the property and of significance in and of itself is the octagonal frame dairy which was moved onto the property in the 1970s. The dairy is the best surviving example of an architecturally conscious domestic outbuilding of the 18th century in the county, and possibly in the state.