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Greater Portland Landmarks

Morse-Libby Mansion, Portland, ca. 1970

Contributed by Greater Portland Landmarks
MMN Item 23283 Item Details
Morse-Libby Mansion, Portland, ca. 1970
MMN Item 23283 Zoom

Description

The Morse-Libby Mansion built between 1858 and 1860 is also known as the Victoria Mansion.

Located at 109 Danforth Street in Portland, the building is of Italianate brownstone.

New Orleans residents Ruggles Morse and Olive Morse were native Mainers and commissioned architect Henry Austin, designer Gustave Herter and painter Giuseppe Guidicini to collaborate on the building of their summer home.

Morse made his wealth in the hotel business and this is reflected in the design and decoration.

The Joseph Libby family purchased the Victoria Mansion and its contents in 1894. Later, the Morse-Libby House was named the Victoria Mansion after Queen Victoria by William Holmes and his sister Clara Holmes who rescued the mansion from demolition, in 1941.

The Italianate style is typically boxy, heavy and balanced stone or stucco using a romantic essence with towers, cupolas, balustrades and balconies. Other common features include: quoins, heavy moldings, pilasters, covered entries (hoods), triangular or arched pediments with flat or low pitched roofs with overhanging eaves and brackets.

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