Saturday, April 14, 2012

Mr. E. D. Morgan's Residence at Newport, R.I.

***Below article appeared in Country Life in America 1919, interlaced with additional photos from the Smithsonian***

ALTHOUGH it was built more than a quarter of a century ago Mr. E. D. Morgan's residence at Newport, R. I. ranks today, as it always has, amongst the finest country homes in America, both for architectural beauty and for comfort. Time indeed seems to have softened its lines and mellowed its tones so that the house blends easily with the background of sea and sky, something which alas, cannot be said of some of the more modern country houses that arise every now and then.
Mr. E. D. Morgan's summer home at Newport, R.I.                                       Painted by John Vincent
In the construction of Mr. Morgan's house, the architects—Messrs. McKim, Mead & White, of New York—sought to make use of the natural advantages to the fullest extent possible. 
***"Beacon Rock" Home of E. D. Morgan***
Situated on a rocky promontory, they selected gray stone to blend with the rock, so that the house seems a part of the rocks themselves instead of being merely perched on a cliff. The ivy covers both the rocks and the stone work to such an extent that it is almost impossible to distinguish where one ends and the other begins. To relieve the monotony of the gray stone, white pillars surround the wide porches and the pediments and gables are all painted white.
First Floor Plan

In the arrangement of the rooms, the living and masters' rooms occupy one wing of the house, while the other wing contains the servant quarters. One enters a spacious hall, out of which opens the living room with windows from which one obtains a splendid view of the waters of the Atlantic. The dining room, which has a similar view, adjoins the living room and can be entered either from the hall or living room. There are three large master's rooms on the first floor and two baths. In the opposite wing there are six servants' bedrooms with a bath room.
***"Beacon Rock" Home of E. D. Morgan - Newport Bay Saturday 25, 1903***
***"Beacon Rock" Home of E. D. Morgan***
The house is built around a court and a wide terrace in the rear overlooks the rocks and the bay, and near by is the famous bathing place, Bailey's Beach, probably the most famous beach in the world—where the members of Newport's summer colony take a morning plunge almost daily.

In addition to its convenient planning and its architectural beauty, the Morgan house is essentially homelike. Every room seems to possess this quality and not even the hallway appears cold and cheerless. Possibly the passing years have added some of the softness and mellowness to obtain this desirable effect.

Click HERE to see "Beacon Rock" at