This window is at the top corner of the Haines House in Concord, Massachusetts. Built in 1813, it has shutters are made to work and most likely has layers of paint thicker than the walls of most modern houses. Below is the front door to the same house (currently an academic administration building at Concord Academy), where the wiring for the light had to be routed on the outside. The way all the exterior lines and shapes in these old structures can fit together into a coherent whole fascinates me – in modern times that approach doesn’t seem to work nearly as well, and yet here, it does. Are we more forgiving of older architecture just because it’s old or did they get something right that we don’t? I admit that I am more enamored of such places from the outside looking in – once inside, they tend to be dark and cramped and have a kind of slanted fun house quality because everything has settled unevenly over the centuries (and that funky wiring goes from quaint to dangerous).
It’s easy to be enamored of almost anything from the outside looking in, isn’t it?