Explore the Architectural Details of this Stunning Victorian Property in Richmond

by | Jun 20, 2022

This historic Victorian-style home in Richmond, known as the CHTJ Southard House, boasts intricate architectural details like lovingly-restored tin ceilings, original hand-painted artwork along the walls, exquisite patterns in the hardwood floors and even a dumbwaiter. Located just north of Merrymeeting Bay along the west bank of the Kennebec River, Richmond prospered in the 1800s with rich shipbuilding and ice-harvesting industries.

The mansion’s namesake, TJ Southard, is considered one of the founding fathers of Richmond, and the property was featured in a 2018 “Historic Highlight” column of Maine Homes by Downeast:

When Thomas Jefferson Southard purchased this circa 1870 home on Richmond’s Main Street, it was something of a blank canvas. Southard, a shipbuilder and property developer who built several of the town’s landmark business blocks and close to 50 of its houses, envisioned a beacon of Queen Anne-style splendor and embellished the simple residence accordingly before giving it to his son, Charles, in 1888.

“Almost a century later, the current owners lovingly restored the home and utilized the first level of the mansion and the carriage house as a museum of local history, called the Southard House Museum, while retaining the original features of this opulent manse,” explains Legacy Properties Sothebys International Realty agent Kristie Jorgensen, who is representing the sellers.

Inside the mansion’s grand foyer, historic details like the white and pale blue tin ceilings and original milled woodwork are immediately evident. To the left is the double parlor, surrounded by original hand-painted decorative wainscoting, original built-ins for storage, a dumbwaiter, and a functional kitchen in the rear. Other details include original parqueted wood flooring throughout the home, original hand-painted décor on one bathroom door, and a marble façade and mantle on the second level fireplace. Various colored tin ceilings adorn the rooms on all levels along with crown molding and the tall, wide custom windows allowing an abundance of warm natural light.

“Years before the current owners bought the home, the second and third levels were converted into apartments with the kitchens and bathrooms still intact today,” explains Jorgensen. “There are so many opportunities to convert the mansion to commercial space, like a law practice, offices, retail space, or condominiums, apartments, short-term vacation rentals or mixed even commercial and residential use.”

Ample parking is located in the rear of the property and the carriage house can be converted into residential living or a multi-vehicle garage with storage.

“One key feature that was built into the turret is the third level observation room, which offers stunning views of the Maine Kennebec Bridge, Swan Island, the Kennebec River, the TJ Southard Italianate-style House, and downtown Main Street,” says Jorgensen.

Climb to the Observation Tower, featuring views of the Kennebec River, Kennebec Bridge and downtown Richmond.

The opportunities for this unique space are endless. The Southard House offers a total of six bathrooms in the mansion and a half bath in the carriage house, as well as four functional kitchens along with an intact studio apartment, for a total of 7,500 square feet of finished living space.

Explore this incredible historic home in a Matterport 3D virtual tour.