National Register of Historic Places in Contra Costa County

National Register #79000472: Point Richmond Historic District Richmond Fire Department No. 1
14 February 2006
(Click Photo to Zoom)
National Register #79000472
Point Richmond Historic District
State Highway 17

The Point Richmond Historic District contains 340 contributing buildings built between 1900 and 1920.

During this period, home builders in Point Richmond copied most popular Bay Area architectural styles: Queen Anne, San Francisco Stick, Neo-Classic, Eastern Shingle, Brown Shingle, Craftsman Bungalow and California Bungalow.

These designs were executed principally in their diminutive cottage or row house form with subdued styling and ornament. The Queen Anne Cottage and a number of variations of the Neo-Classic Row House are more numerous than the other styles, and the more decorative examples of Italianate and Stick-Eastlake are conspicuously absent.

Except for the four churches and a few commercial buildings, there is little evidence of professional architectural design. Most buildings were constructed by carpenters who had learned their trade in the earlier building booms in Oakland and San Francisco. The carpenters were assisted by mail order pattern books and prefabricated structural and decorative elements from the local mill.

Commercial storefronts also exhibit an adaptation of contemporary styles executed in wood or brick. Commercial buildings in Point Richmond are typically two-story buildings with flat roofs. Design features include parapets, upper bay windows, storefronts with clerestory windows and light shelves and retractable awnings over the sidewalk.

Two brick buildings - the Hotel Mac and the Richmond Fire Station No. 1 - have sheet metal cornices complete with brackets, dentils, and egg and dart mouldings.

Adapted from the NRHP nomination submitted in October 1979.

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