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1850 - 1870: Octagon Style

Victorian 8-Sided Houses


During the 1850s and 1860s, a few thousand octagonal or round houses were constructed in New England, New York, and the Midwest.
Octagonal Houses and Round Houses

Victorian Octagon House

Photo courtesy ClipArt.com

Octagon houses usually have these features:

  • Octagonal or rounded shape, usually (although not always) with 8 sides
  • Cupola
  • Porches, usually one-story

About the Octagon Style:

Historians often credit writer Orson S. Fowler for the innovation of the unusual and rare Octagon style. Fowler believed that Octagon houses increased sunlight and ventilation and eliminated "dark and useless corners." After Fowler published his book The Octagon House, A Home for All, plans for Octagon style houses were widely circulated.

However, Fowler did not actually invent the idea of octagonal design. Thomas Jefferson used the octagonal shape for his summer home, and many Adam and Federal style homes included octagonal rooms.

Only a few thousand Octagon houses were built, and not many remain.

More Octagon Houses:

See More Victorian House Styles

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