I know the last thing on your mind as we enter this Holy Season is the shotgun houses of Rocky Mount. Under your tree, however, I am leaving this last blog post for 2019. (The Main Street Facebook page will continue to post in December) I ask that you consider these valuable assets as one of the important answers to our housing needs. How can we make a case for their protection? When it comes to the architectural appreciation of Shotguns you need eyes to see.
The answer lies in advocating the Shotgun’s historical significance. To get our feet wet, here is a short video filmed in New Orleans where after Katrina, their Preservation Group championed the saving of their Shotguns with great success.
FYI: Shotgun houses generally consist of a gabled front porch and two or more rooms laid out in a straight line. Rooms are directly connected without hallways. Although shotgun houses are small, were inexpensively built, and generally lack amenities, they have been praised for their architectural virtues, which include the ingenious use of limited space and decoration such as gingerbread trim and brightly painted exteriors. They represent a uniquely African American contribution to architecture in the United States.
Here is a small collection of some Shotgun homes in Ward 2 that I photographed in 2018. I wrote to Councilman Blackwell about these homes without a reply. It doesn’t matter, let’s become a voice in the New Year and get active in the on-going life of these architectural assets. Protecting these houses will make our neighborhoods safer and even restored, affordable. It is a win-win for everyone. SCROLL DOWN TO READ FURTHER COMMENTS