Circa 1850 – 1930
The Beaux Arts style building was another of the high style eclectic building types that was reserved for the grand monumental homes of the American elite like the Vanderbilts. There were two Beaux Arts subtypes: the flat or low-pitched hipped roof form and the mansard roof form. The flat or hipped roof version was the most popular version of the Beaux Arts forms built. These sometimes could be confused with large Neoclassical homes, but the Beaux Arts homes had large paired columns that the Neoclassical home lacked. The mansard roof form tended to be used on smaller scale Beaux Arts homes.
Most Beaux Arts homes had some sort of rustiftcation of the main level along with a symmetrical facade. The masonry walls were usually light in color and they were often decorated with garlands, floral swags, and escutcheons, as well as a line of quoins at the wall junctions. The cornice was heavily accented with dentils, modillions, or heavy and elaborate carvings. Pilasters and columns in the Ionic or Corinthian orders were frequently used on these homes and they usually ran up to the cornice line. Windows and doors were very heavily decorated, usually with a surround decorated with elaborate brackets and pediments, and often window sills and roof lines had some sort of balustrade.
Very few buildings in the South were constructed in the Beaux Arts style outside of government buildings and educational facilities.