171 Main Street: The Nathan Lusk House


171 Main St.

athan Lusk built this house in 1876, after Cleveland quit working on his Main Street notes, so it went unmentioned there. The lot was part of the Wood & Bruen carriage works lot until after the 1867 fire, and remained part of the Bordwell lot to the north until Ralph T. Wood divided it in 1876.

Wood sold the south half of his lot to Nathan Lusk in that year, and it was he who had this marvelous house built. It is, obviously, one of the more exuberant Victorian houses on Main Street, and one can't help wondering whether it was Lusk or his wife Sarah who was more responsible for its design.

It was Sarah Lusk who sold the house in 1894 to Elsie Doubleday, the wife of Dr. Charles E. Doubleday. This whole row of houses on Main Street was particularly popular with physicians and dentists, perhaps because they were big enough to provide room for a practice, or because they were handy for those who had offices downtown.

People related to this lot and structure:

     Abraham Wagener
     Miles Benham  

Related history:

     Looking Backward

Above: This house is so eclectic it can't truly be even pinpointed as Queen Anne, the catchall style for so many Victorian dwellings in Penn Yan. Certainly it has the characteristic Queen Anne asymmetrical massing and two-story bay windows; but the richness of detail appears not in the surfaces and building materials but in the decoration. The wide eaves and brackets, and the broken pediments are Italianate, the mansard roof on the tower is Second Empire, and there is a definite Gothic Revival flavor to the shape of the hood moldings over the windows, and the dropped finials and triple angular brackets on the porch trim.

1857 view1865 view1874 view1876 view1896 view1931 view2008 view  
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