Saturday, March 5, 2016

Henry Hobson Richardson

Henry Hobson Richardson is known for two things: the Trinity Church in Boston and the railway station in Framingham. Nah, just kidding, he's part of the holy trinity of American architects with Louis Sullivan and Frank LLoyd Wright, so he's a really big deal. Even though the train station in Framingham doesn't really come up at the top of the charts when listing Richardson's achievements, it is fair to say that it is an important building in American architecture. It was built in 1883 (Richardson died in 1886) for the Boston & Albany railroad company. Until recently, it was kind left to its own demises. Now, it's the home of the Deluxe Station Diner where you can get excellent pancakes in a rather interesting steampunk inspired decor. By the way, good on them for finally getting rid of those green and white awnings.

What's striking about the Framingham train station is the wide hip roof and the extended eaves, probably inspired from Japanese architecture. The main dormer also displays the Syrian arch, a trait found in many of his other buildings. Whether he liked to design train stations or that's where the money was (I suspect the latter), Richardson built a bunch of those train depots for the B&A (Boston & Albany railroad) and, as you would imagine, they all look kinda similar but so different at the same time.

For more info on Henry Hobson Richardson, it would be best to consult Henry Hobson Richardson on Wikipedia.

South Framingham railway station designed by Henry Hobson Richardson.

Henry Hobson Richardson (from portrait by Sir Hubert von Herkomer exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.)

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