Acanthus Press publishes fine books on architecture, design, and gardens. Our award-winning volumes chronicle the lost histories of houses and objects, of clients and designers.

From New York to Los Angeles, from St. Paul to Miami, Acanthus Press seeks to publish the undiscovered, the under-appreciated, the rare, and the exceptional.          


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Washington’s history of domestic architecture offers a remarkable range of periods, styles, and types yet, unlike the city’s great monuments and civic buildings, its documentation and in-depth studies have been scarce. Architectural and social historian James M. Goode and award-winning photographer Bruce White fill that void with their magnificent study of Washington’s historic residences that will come as a revelation even to those who think they know the city.  

Capital Houses examines the history of Washington’s domestic architecture over a period of nearly 250 years through an outstanding collection of 56 historic houses: 44 in the District of Columbia and 12 in its Virginia and Maryland suburbs. 

The most comprehensive survey of the city’s historic houses to date, this monumental work paints a picture of private life, taste, and changes in Washington from the first chimneys that rose in Colonial forests to the urban scene today. In ten meticulously detailed chapters, each dedicated to a specific architectural period, Goode traces their stylistic development, from the first Georgian example—Mount Vernon (1735) in Fairfax County, Virginia—to one of the city’s best midcentury Moderns, the Kreeger House (1966) on Foxhall Road in Washington. A number of houses, including the Georgian landmark Hayes Manor, the Stickley-designed Dumblane, the Arts and Crafts-style Granger Cottage, and an Art Deco gem, the Mounsey House, are published here for the first time. A detailed introduction outlines important historical influences and trends and offers insightful political, social, and artistic commentary.  

Capital Houses is profusely illustrated with new color images by White, which are complemented by restored period photographs and custom-drawn floor plans. Detailed maps, commissioned specially for this book, give an overview of Washington’s all 22 historic districts and focus individually on Dupont Circle, Sheridan-Kalorama, and Georgetown where the majority of the houses in the book are located.  

Great Houses of New York, Volume 1, 1880--1930. 2nd edition.
Capital Houses Historic Residences of Washington D.C. and its Environs, 1735-1965
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