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Originally built by a manufacturer, this house (99 Power Street) was home in the second half of the 20th century to Beatrice Oenslager (Happy) Chace, who was one the leaders of Providence’s historic preservation movement and singly responsible for restoring some 40 houses on northern Benefit Street.

Four discrete building campaigns contribute to this house’s distinct physical form. The original end-gable-roof section is a typical Greek Revival form but slightly more elaborate in its ornamentation, with fine Ionic porch, pilasters that define the three-bay façade, and flushboard pediment. The wing on the west side, with bay window on the first story and hooded Palladian window above, was added sometime before 1875. Interior renovations occurred at least twice in the 20th century: Georgian Revival mantels in the living room and library in one phase and enlarging the living room and remodeling the dining room with the addition of the large semicircular bay window. Broadway set designer Donald Oenslager, Mrs. Chace’s brother, collaborated on the dining room remodeling. Each of these transformations adds to the character of the house and enhances its importance as a physical document of architectural and social history. 

— 2008 Festival of Historic Houses Guidebook

Four Greek Revival houses in a row illustrate the forms typical for this style in Providence. The two ends of this row are houses larger in scale than most and both feature unusual pilaster strips framing each of their façade’s three bays. Slocum’s format (99 Power Street, pictured here) is the more typical, with its entrance at one side of the main block’s façade; the post-Civil War addition along the original west elevation adds vigorously visual interest. Hill’s (85 Power Street) is worthy of note as the home of a local builder who apprenticed with John Holden Greene. In between are the flank-gable-roof Foster House (93 Power Street) and the end-gable-roof Tillinghast House (89 Power Street).

2003 Guide to Providence Architecture

The images below are taken from the PPS Gowdey Database. First image is of 85 Power Street.


Above, 89 Power Street

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© 2024 Guide to Providence Architecture. All rights reserved. Design by J. Hogue at Highchair designhaus, with development & support by Kay Belardinelli.