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This forceful chateauesque statement, by the same architectural firm as the house across the street (a house to which it significantly turns its almost-least-important side), has a flamboyance seldom seen in Second Empire houses in Providence; it actually skips the surface elaboration of most houses in that mode in favor of untutored massing gymnastics. Given his political connections, William R. Walker easily might have garnered many more domestic commissions of this magnitude. But Walker seems always especially, in domestic architecture, to have been creatively a little bit behind the curve; by late 1870s, several other architects, better trained than Walker, were providing more innovative approaches to organizing and ornamenting domestic spaces. But this lovely wedding-cake of a house, a reminder of the French contribution to culinary as well as to architectural presentation.

– 2003 Guide to Providence Architecture

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© 2023 Guide to Providence Architecture. All rights reserved. Design by J. Hogue at Highchair designhaus, with development & support by Kay Belardinelli.