James Patterson House
Stop and admire this late-Georgian home in Dresden
On River Road in Dresden, the James Patterson House stands like a stoplight, its arresting shade compelling passersby to pause and admire its elegant Colonial features. Captain James Patterson and Margaret Howard — one of the first European women to live in the Cushnoc settlement in present-day Augusta — built their late-Georgian residence with 12-over-12 sash windows and a triangular pedimented entryway in 1765. The couple is believed to have had the inaugural wedding at Fort Western, the 1754 outpost around which the future capital city grew. But their marriage ended abruptly in 1768, when Patterson’s ship crashed near Friendship, causing the landmass his crew washed up on to become known as Wreck Island — and the red of his former home to acquire a cautionary quality.
Portland-based writer Julie Senk holds degrees in history and historic preservation and provides property surveys and architectural analyses to homeowners and businesses. To learn more about her work, visit northernvernacular.com.