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Local History




The home of Mrs. S. S. McNinch is the only remaining example of Shingle Style architecture in Mecklenburg County, and is probably one of the outstanding examples in North Carolina. This house reflects the widely popular Queen Anne style which developed out of the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. This style was influenced by Colonial Architecture as well as by the exquisite architectural woodwork in the Japanese section of the Exhibition.

The McNinch House is an expression of this uniquely American style of the 1880's and '9Os, characterized by light frame construction, irregular outlines, verandahs and balconies, steep pitched roofs, and large open interior spaces - made possible by the development of the central heating systems.


  • Having trouble identifying brick patterns, shingle patterns, or other parts? See the Illustrated Guidebook for help!
  • Look for all of the different types of windows on the house. Notice also the irregularity of the house - no symmetry here!
  • Look at the different types of shingles used on the roof. There are several of the types shown in our Illustrated Guidebook on this house.


    At the site...

  • Sketch three different types of sash windows on the house. Identify them by how many lights (glass pieces) are in each section. For windows with a top half and a bottom half, identify the window by the number of lights in the top half and the number in the bottom half (example: 9/6 sash has 9 lights on the top half and 6 on the bottom). A round window might be identified by the number of lights as well (example: a 7 light round window). Pick one of the round windows you can see and sketch it. Identify it bythe number of lights it has.
  • Sketch and identify the shingle patterns you see on the roof and the walls.

    On your own...

  • The Queen Anne style is very individual. Though many design elements are used over and over, no two Queen Anne houses are exactly alike. Compare the Liddell-McNinch House with the Queen Anne houses you saw just a block or two away - The Overcarsh House, the Sheppard House, and the Berryhill House. Create a table that shows Queen Anne elements of each.

    HouseSymmetry (Y/N)?Roof ShapesRoof Shingles TypesWindow ShapesTower ShapeWall MaterialOutstanding Feature
    Overcarsh House . . . . . . .
    Berryhill House . . . . . . .
    Sheppard House . . . . . . .
    McNinch House . . . . . . .