Home Sweet Home – The American Bungalow – Save Rocky Mount’s Bungalows

At the turn of the century, bungalows, equipped with the latest conveniences, helped fulfill Americans’ wishes for their own home. The bungalow’s popularity was the idea that simplicity and artistry could be combined in one affordable house. The appreciation for bungalows include the fact that serious architecture was found outside the realm of the rich. Bungalows allowed people of modest means to achieve something they had long sought: respectability. With its special features – style, convenience, simplicity, sound construction, the bungalow provided fulfillment of the American dream. The bungalow was practical, and it symbolized for many the best of the good life.

Most bungalows were constructed between 1880 to 1930 in the United States. A bungalow’s distinction is its low profile and most of the living space on one floor. Before World War I, a small bungalow could be built for $900. The bungalow became the architecture of the city and its suburbs.

Open Your Eyes to Possibilities – Restoration – A Thing of Beauty!
A Craftsman style bungalow I found in Goldsboro

I could have exchanged these photographs for boarded up, neglected, detierorating bungalows in Wards 1-4. I have these photos. But, I think of it this way…..When praying for people who are ill, I never picture them sick and captured by illness. If they love to walk, I see them vigorously walking. Perhaps on the tennis court, digging in their gardens. I’m confident that our bodies want to be well. I pray for open hands to receive healing. I look at the boarded housing through the lens of a beautiful restored home. I remember the safe neighborhood I grew up in, the smell of cut grass, the beautiful architecture of my home.

Join me in imploring the leadership that will be handling the HUD GRANT to set aside, “What is in this for me?” Beyond saving our bungalows and shotgun housing, remember this!

“Rehabilitating historic properties conserves taxpayers’ dollars, conserves our local heritage, and conserves the natural environment. Rehabilitating historic buildings and using the infrastructure that is already in place to serve them is the height of fiscal and environmental responsibility.” – Donovan Rypkema , Place Economics

PS: An invitation from Stepheny – Did you know you can listen to the 5 minute podcast, Talking Main Street With Stepheny at any time you please. The latest episode, after watching hours of the Afghanistan news coverage, gave me further insight into our leadership on the Council. Click on the link below and catch up with the episodes on your time. I hope you enjoy this platform where I can talk Main Street Thanks.



The Bungalows Of Rocky Mount – Another Architectural Asset That Needs Protection – Part One

 “The house gulped in a big breath of fresh air, like some frantic drowning thing breaking the water’s surface and gasping for life. It had sat unopened for so long, suffocating in the silence, it’s memories blanketed by a thick layer of dust.”
― Rachel Autumn Deering, Husk


Chicago is known the world over for its architecture. The soaring skyscrapers of downtown, the luxurious palaces of meat-packing barons, and the gracious Prairie-style homes of the elite and 80,000 Bungalows throughout the residential areas of the city. I was born in Chicago and raised from the age of 5 in Evanston, IL. where my parents remained until I was married. Part of who I am involved sitting in the back seat of my parent’s car looking out the windows at the ‘city of neighborhoods’ and the architecture along the outer drive leading to Michigan Avenue and beyond. It was not until I began to write Main Street that the experience of those countless images informed how I see and champion Main Street Rocky Mount: the abundance of beautiful commercial and residential architecture that abides here.

 THE BUNGALOW: You may be fortunate to live in one of the Foursquare homes scattered throughout Rocky Mount. Foursquare bungalows are but one example of the most popular styles of houses in America. Despite their basic, simple cube design, they offer a large variety of appearances, and their form can be seen from coast to coast, from plain to fancy. It has been said that they are the quintessential home of the period. They are a squat, solid, rectangular, one-and-a-half story homes built between 1910 and 1940.  The bungalow was the darling of the American Arts and Crafts movement, which emphasized skilled craftsmanship and a connection with nature.  “The whole idea behind the bungalow implies an informal setting, as compared to the Victorian mansion,” says historian Dominic Pacyga.

In 2000, Chicago launched The Historic Bungalow Initiative to preserve and adapt these cornerstones of residential Chicago. The Initiative is unique in America recognizing the homes as stylistically important, but also provides incentives for improvement and modernization. The Initiative is a comprehensive marketing, education and financing program launched to celebrate the architectural and historical importance and ensure the viability of the Chicago bungalow’s contribution to families, neighborhoods and the nation’s architecture. The initiative is a joint endeavor of the City of Chicago, the Chicago Architecture Foundation and the Historic Chicago Bungalow Association.


I am including a few examples of Bungalow Architecture I have snatched from here and there, (articles, Pinterest) to remind you of your drive-by experience – – seeing them everywhere you go in Rocky Mount. FOLLOW Main Street so you don’t miss Part 2.






We’ll Build a Bungalow For Two