From its beginning as a frontier town to its heyday as one of the wealthiest cities in America, Lynchburg has appreciated and built fine architecture.
As a town boarding the wilderness, Lynchburg started out simple. When John Lynch began dividing his lots, homeowners had strict rules governing the types of houses they could build. The first Lynchburg houses were 16 feet square and had to be finished within three years.
Most houses, which were build close to the streets, were frame building with wooden shingled roofs. Lynchburgers regularly used stone for basement and foundations.
Settlers avoided chimneys made of wood or wattle and daub - an early building material of interwoven sticks and twigs- because of the fire hazard. Instead they used stone or brick.
The early Lynchburg build solid, one and a half storied brick cottages with high pitched roofs and tiny windows.
Lynchburg presents a history of architecture from the Federal and Greek Revival period on up. Lynchburg's architecture includes fine examples from the Federal style-of the early 1800's through the "anything goes style" of the early 1900's when builders used several styles of buildings.
The houses on Rivermont Avenue illustrate how diverse architecture became in the early 1900's. Architects borrowed features from several different periods and styles - for example putting Spanish tiles of the roof of a colonial home.
Lynchburg has always been prepared to put the energy and resources into having quality architecture and neighborhoods. I think that is one of Lynchburg's unique quality.