Look Up! Frank Miles Day mansions nominated to Philadelphia Register

Look Up!” is a PlanPhilly feature that encourages appreciation of our architectural and historical environment. The photo essays focus on different Philadelphia areas and their distinctive building styles and details, all of which make up the physical fabric of the city and region.

The turn-of-the-century work of Frank Miles Day is mainly found on college campuses, including Princeton, Yale, Johns Hopkins, Penn State, University of Delaware, New York University, and University of Colorado.

His designs on the Penn campus include the University Museum and the first brick stadium on Franklin Field.

The Philadelphia-born architect also built handsome homes in the city, two of which were recently nominated to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places.

The Harry K. Cummings Residence, 240 West Tulpehocken Street, was built in 1892 for a prominent grain merchant and feed dealer.

The Germantown mansion is a Renaissance Revival design that borrows from a variety of European styles. Steep sloping roofs and dormers recall English Arts & Crafts; sculpted cherubs on the loggia recall Italian estates; and Roman arches adorn the lower windows and portico.

The light stucco exterior is complemented by the decorative brick designs around the windows.

The Theodore M. Etting Residence, 1219 Spruce Street in Washington Square West, was built in 1890. The three-story townhouse is an elegant blend of brick and stone in the Romanesque Revival style, with elegant and grotesque carvings above the entrance and other focal points.

In these two houses, Day proved his versatile talent in suburban and urban settings.

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Contact the writer at ajaffe@planphilly.com.

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