When Bath’s York Hall was constructed in 1897, the architectural aesthetic in America was shifting away from ostentatious Victorian designs and back toward traditionalism. The Boston firm of Peabody & Stearns’ support for this stylistic renaissance is reflected in the Georgian Revival home its architects designed for prominent shipbuilder William Sewall and his wife, Rachel. Resplendent in classical detailing, the residence conveyed the family’s social status. The Sewalls’ son, Sumner, was married here in 1929 and later served as Maine’s governor during World War II. President Calvin Coolidge also reportedly stayed on the property. Having changed hands only a few times over the years, York Hall has retained its historic character and remains one of Bath’s finest homes.
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.