Some Notes on “Green Spring”



Among the “Ludwell Papers” given to this Society many years ago by Cassius F. Lee, is a representation of the south elevation of Greenspring House, adem by B. H. Latrobe, architect, March, 1797. Our reproduction is necessarily so [m]uch reduced that the faded writing will hardly be legible.

We, therefore, print here what the architect has written across the top of the elevation.

First at the top of the elevation is written “Lining of the South Wall of Greenspring House”. Underneath this is written in six sections “Dining room, frame of this part measuring from the west wall”, “Lobby, frame this to the window”. “The Saloon. Frame this part from the center each way.” “Back stairs.” “Staircase. Get this opening into the center of the stairs.” “Drawing room. Frame this from the center each way”.

Beyond the reference to the drawing room the following appears: “N.B. All these dimensions are calculated to receive the finishing being given in the rough”. Below the plan of the walls and doors is written “The present floor intended to remain”, and farther down is also written “South Elevation of Greenspring1House“.

Below the elevation of the house is written “Plan of the arcade at Greenspring”.

It would appear from the words “the present floors” that Latrobe was planning the entire reconstruction of a house then standing. Whether his plan was adopted is not known.

1 “My Uncle” was Philip Ludwell, recently deceased. His sister R. H. Lee’s mother.

2 C. W. Peale. The portrait of Chatham is now in Westmoreland Court House.