Hewitt House / Inn Buffalo - Table of Contents

Exterior
Herbert H. Hewitt House - Inn Buffalo/Off Elmwood

  619 Lafayette Avenue, Buffalo, NY

Inn Buffalo/Off Elmwood - Official Website

Built:
1898
Architect: Lansing & Beierl
Also designed the Lafayette Presbyterian Church at the corner of Elmwood and Lafayette, just down the block
Style:
Eclectic:
Stick ornamentation, Richardsonian Romanesque porch, Arts & Crafts siding, Queen Anne stained glass
Square footage: 10,000 sq. ft. +
Converted to rooming house: 1943
Converted to B&B: 2015
Status:
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places
On the Explore Buffalo Lafayette Avenue Tour of Homes
September 22, 2018
Research by Judy Tucker

Herbert Hills Hewitt, the founder of the Hewitt Rubber Company and the Buffalo Brass Company, had this home constructed in 1898. It was designed in an eclectic Victorian Stick style by architects Lansing & Beierl, who also designed the Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church.

Note the house’s now-vintage pair of Medina sandstone hitching posts near the street.

The fixtures, finishes and innovations original to this home made it one of the finest built in Buffalo at the time. Hewitt spared no expense, installing the finest windows, tiles, wood, electric lighting and dual-purpose fixtures that included a gas backup, and central heat.
   
Starting in the 1940’s, the mansion was used as a boarding house for several decades. Eventually, rentals couldn’t support the house and it was put up for auction in 2011. Fortunately, it was bought by owners Joe and Ellen Lettieri who have restored it as an historic Inn that opened in 2015.  Remarkably, most of the original elements, and 95% of the original footprint, remain intact.
   
Inside you will see an array of quarter-sawn oak, mahogany, and cherry woodwork, beautiful stained-glass windows, a mosaic vestibule and gold leaf ceiling.  These are among many treasures uncovered and restored by the owners, and there is still more to unveil! Be sure to check out one of the unique heat control thermostats. The owners are most proud of being able to share this gem and shine a spotlight on Buffalo’s rich history.

2013 photo



2015 Photos


Original pair of hitching posts



Medina sandstone hitching post and porch



Flared attic gable roofs and  barge boards ... Half-timbered dormers ... Second story  Stick stylebow window ... Richardsonian Romanesque style porch and porte-cochere



Cross gable roof






  Medina sandstone foundation



Quoined brick chimney



Second story bow window ... Stick style ornamentation ...
The asymmetrical composition of the Eastern Stick style is highlighted by functional-appearing decorative "stick work." The style is defined primarily by decorative detailing -- the characteristic multi-textured wall surfaces and roof trusses whose stickwork faintly mimics the exposed structural members of Medieval half-timbered houses.



Dentil molding    ...    Arts & Crafts style  knee brace  ornamentation   ...    Second story




East elevation
2015 Photos


Arts & Crafts style  rafter tails support  overhanging eaves



Paired, gabled, half-timbered  dormer windows  ...  Although proponents lauded the structural honesty of Stick style, the visible stickwork, unlike true half-timbering, was merely applied decoration with no structural relation to the underlying balloon-frame construction



Exposed rafter tails support flared gables ...  Half-timbered tympanum ...  Dentil molding ...  Dormerlattice window ... Quoined chimney



Dining room leaded glass sash windows raise into the upper wall... Arts & Crafts style  painted wooden shingles



Unusual 3-1-3 wooden shingle siding





Photos from the rooftop
2015 Photos


Neighbor at the end of the block at Elmwood Avenue:  Lafayette Presbyterian Church, also designed by  Lansing & Beierl



Flared attic gable roofs on the west elevation



Quoined chimney



Three combination air conditioning and heating units




 Special thanks to owners Ellen and Joseph Lettieri for their cooperation and assistance in 2015.
Photos and their arrangement 2015 Chuck LaChiusa
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