Singleton P. Moorehead Streetscapes


Singleton P. Moorehead Streetscapes


Singleton P. Moorehead (1900 – 1964), was born in Saranac, NY, attended Harvard (BA, 1922; M. Arch, 1927), and was employed in 1928 by the Boston architectural firm of Perry, Shaw and Hepburn. In the same year, he came to Williamsburg as a member of its' architectural field office responsible for the initial restoration work in the historic area. He married Cynthia Beverley Tucker Coleman, a descendant of colonial era Williamsburg resident St. George Tucker. Staying on, Moorehead joined the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s architectural office at its creation in 1934, became director of architecture from 1944 – 48, and continued as an architectural consultant until his death.

This collection of streetscapes was created by Moorehead for the use of John D. Rockefeller Jr. They were created at a reduced scale so Rockefeller might study recommendations comfortably in his limousine. By comparing the small-scale view with what he saw through car windows, he was able to decide whether to approve funding for the work. The colored dots denote four different kinds of properties. Blue indicates additional work to be done at properties already restored or reconstructed; red signified work proposed for properties owned by the restoration; black indicated work to be done at properties owned by the restoration but subject to life tenure and green indicated work to be performed at future acquisitions.

The nine streetscapes in this collection were executed by Moorehead to accompany a February 20, 1939 report entitled: Proposed Ultimate Restoration Work” written by A. Edwin Kendrew, Foundation Architect and head of Colonial Williamsburg’s architectural staff. About these illustrations, Moorehead wrote: “I made some renderings in water color and crayon … And I did elevations of all the streets that occurred in the area where restoration or reconstruction work was or was to be done. Those were mounted on stiff cardboard mats. I think in all there were about eighteen feet of them … Those were passed to Mr. Rockefeller, and he toured the town in his car. He would go up one side of the street and down the other and follow the schedule by circles of color … He didn’t have to stand around with the wind blowing huge blueprints and stuff. He just had these simple little renderings. (They were quite attractive, even if I do say so.) He bought the proposition, and then the fun really started.”

Collection Items

Block 21 ; Block 30-2 : Palace Green
Looking west on Palace Green, this streetscape shows Bruton Parish Church, the George Wythe House and outbuildings, the Elkanah Deane House and the Carter Saunders House (now known as the Robert Carter House).

Block 22 : Duke of Gloucester Street
This streetscape shows the north side of Duke of Gloucester Street between Henry Street and Nassau Street. Casey Store is shown at the intersection of Henry and Duke of Gloucester streets. It is now the location of the College of William and Mary's…

Block 20 ; Block 29 ; Block 19 : Palace Green
This streetscape illustrates the east side of Palace Green. It shows the Governor's Palace, Brush House (now the Thomas Everard House), First Theatre, Levingston House (now called the Levingston Kitchen), Gilmer's Apothecary (now called the St.…

Block 19 : Duke of Gloucester Street
This streetscape illustrates the north side of Duke of Gloucester Street at Block 19. Depicted on Duke of Gloucester Street are the Geddy House, Norton House (presently called the Roscow Cole House), the Courthouse, and the Dixon Shop and Bird House…

Block 17; Block 8: Duke of Gloucester Street
This view looking north along Duke of Gloucester Street at Blocks 17 and 8, shows the Prentis and Russell houses, Craig's Shop (now the Margaret Hunter Shop), the Golden Ball, Carter's Shop (now the Unicorn's Horn and John Carter's Store), Raleigh…

Block 14: Duke of Gloucester Street
This view along the Duke of Gloucester Street shows Block 14 bounded by Nassau and Henry Streets. To the far left along Nassau Street is the Bryan House. The Catherine Blaikley House and outbuildings are shown to the right of the Bryan House. In the…

Block 12: Duke of Gloucester Street
This view looking south on Duke of Gloucester Street shows the Market Square Tavern, Public Magazine and the Guard House. Behind Duke of Gloucester Street is Francis Street. Two buildings are shown on Francis Street including the Lightfoot House…

Block 10 ; Block 11: Duke of Gloucester Street
This view shows the properties located on the south side of Duke of Gloucester Street in blocks 10 and 11 between Botetourt and Queen Streets. Dr. Carter's Brick House (now the Brick House Tavern) is depicted at the far left. To the right of the…

Block 9: Duke of Gloucester Street
This view, looking south along Duke of Gloucester Street at Block 9, bordered by Blair and Botetourt Streets, shows a number of businesses and residences. Depicted are the Kerr House and Kitchen (now the Palmer House and Kitchen), Walthoe House,…
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