Richardsonian Romanesque | Architectural Style Guide
a chair sitting in front of a window next to a lamp
Historic Styles

Richardsonian Romanesque Style (1880 – 1900)


  • Richardson Romaneque style house
  • Richardson Romaneque style house
  • Richardson Romaneque style house
  • Richardson Romaneque style house
  • Richardson Romaneque style house

Richardsonian Romanesque architecture is distinguished by its intricacy, sculpted shapes, and individuality. This eclectic style, created in the late 1800s, gives a sense of permanence and uniqueness to buildings that make them stand out, even among other historic, elegant buildings. Wentworth is a skilled architecture and remodeling company keeping this style alive for our clients in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia.

View pictures of Washington, DC, buildings with this architecture, or keep reading to learn more about the Richardsonian Romanesque style!

What Is Richardsonian Romanesque?

The Richardsonian Romanesque style was named after architect Henry Hobson Richardson. Richardson adapted the style of the ancient Romans and combined it with medieval influences to create a beautiful, enduring style that inspires a sense of awe even today. Richardson practiced architecture as a fine art, and it showed in the detail of his work. Every detail of the Richardsonian Romanesque style was designed to evoke the feeling that these buildings would stand the test of time — and they have. Today, you can still find many buildings in this architectural style in places like Capitol Hill.


This style typically uses solid masonry stonework, sometimes mixed with brick, to give a sense of permanence. Some of the stones used include limestone, granite, or sandstone. The stones are usually square-shaped with rough exposed faces.


Richardsonian Romanesque-style buildings often have hipped roofs with lower cross gables and large square masses capped by a hip roof. For townhouses, mansard roofs and front gabled roofs are more popular. There may also be round or polygonal towers with conical or pyramidal tower roofs.


A vital feature of these buildings includes wide-rounded arches around doors and windows. These arches should be semi-circles, rather than low-spring arches, that rest on free-standing or incorporated columns. Decorative windows often have arched tops and colonnettes on each side — and are often grouped in three or more. Windows are also often recessed deep into the masonry.


The entrance of a Richardsonian Romanesque-style building has an arched top and small columns on each side, with brick arranged in interesting patterns. There may also be decorative patterns incised into the stone lintels and trim.

View our portfolio to see the historic homes Wentworth has remodeled in Washington, DC, and the surrounding areas.  

Exterior of Richardsonian Romanesque style home

Richardsonian Romanesque Remodeling Services Offered

Wentworth can remodel your Richardsonian Romanesque-style home. Our extensive remodeling experience and appreciation for this unique style make us the perfect choice to renovate your historic home.

  • Build Richardsonian Romanesque-style home additions
  • Complete detailing work
  • Redesign interior configurations
  • Enhance any façades on your home
  • Provide interior design services

Our knowledgeable and skilled remodelers will treat your home with respect and bring out the beauty of its architectural style.

Schedule a Consultation With Wentworth

Wentworth is a premier architecture and remodeling company in Washington, DC, Maryland & Northern Virginia. We are passionate about working on historic homes and helping unique architectural styles persist. Our remodeling contractors strive to deliver top-tier customer service and provide exceptional quality.

Contact us online or call 240-383-1226 to schedule a consultation for your Richardsonian Romanesque-style remodeling project.

FAQs About Richardsonian Romanesque Style

Frequently asked questions we receive about the Richardsonian Romanesque style include:

What are the interiors of Richardsonian Romanesque homes like?

The interior of Richardsonian Romanesque-style homes often features dark oak, arched stone fireplaces, large entrance halls, and paneled walls. There may also be intricate carvings or bold staircases.


What buildings today feature the Richardsonian Romanesque style?

Some facilities where you can see this style include the Minneapolis City Hall, the Cincinnati City Hall, the Old Post Office Building in Washington, DC, or the Barbour County Courthouse in West Virginia. This style was often used for municipal buildings but has been adapted for residences, too.

Schedule a consultation with our Chevy Chase, MD remodelers!

“ From the architects to the carpenters, we had complete confidence in Wentworth's expertise. Once construction started, we were very pleased with the communication we had with Wentworth -- Victor kept us apprised of scheduling issues and other relevant developments, and was (and continues to be) extremely responsive and professional. Wentworth did an outstanding job of resolving every hiccup that occurred during the course of our project. Wentworth met our extremely high expectations in almost every area. Our initial meeting with Bruce made clear that Wentworth was the only real choice for our renovation: unlike the several other architects and builders we consulted, Bruce asked us probing questions about how we use our house, actually listened to us, and then gave us options for renovating our space that were beautiful and met our functional needs. We will recommend Wentworth next time we know someone who's looking to renovate. We love our new space - thank you for creating it! ”

Sara Zdeb, Washington, DC