Shotgun House
 Great Buildings  Search  Advanced  Buildings  Architects  Types  Places  3D Models  Pix  Archiplanet   ArchitectureWeek  
Architect Vernacular
Subscribers - login to skip ads
Location New Orleans, Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida
Date 1800 's to 1900 's   timeline
Building Type house
 Construction System wood frame
Climate hot, semi-tropical
Context rural or small town
Style Southeastern U.S. Vernacular
Notes Very simple, just a row of a few rooms under a colinear gable, usually with a modest front porch. Found across U.S. southeast from east Texas to central Florida.


Photo, exterior, traditional New Orleans shotgun house.

Photo, exterior, more recent shotgun house in east-central Florida

Discussion Shotgun House Commentary

"The Shotgun house is a more modest relation of the New York City [brownstone house] and the [Charleston Single House]. Like the brownstone, the entry to the Shotgun house is on one side of the facade with adjacent windows overlooking the street. Though the Shotgun is a freestanding structure, it has no windows on the side walls. These houses are sited so close together that windows would be impractical for light or ventilation and would severely compromise personal privacy."

— Jim Kemp. American Vernacular: Regional Influence in Architecture and Interior Design. Washington, D.C.: The American Institute of Architects Press, 1990. p86.

"This house type is one room wide, one story tall and several rooms deep (usually three or more) and has its primary entrance in the gable end. Its perpendicular alignment breaks with the usual Euro-American pattern, in which the gables are on the sides and the entrance is on the facade or long side. Although gable-entry houses occur in some parts of central Africa, the shotgun house is a New World hybrid that developed in the West Indies and entered the United States via New Orleans in the early 19th century."

— John Michael Vlach. "Afro-Americans." America's Architectural Roots, Ethnic Groups that Built America. Washington, D.C.: The Preservation Press: National Trust for Historic Preservation, 1986. p43.

Sources on Shotgun House

Jim Kemp. American Vernacular, Regional Influences in Architecture and Interior Design. Washington: American Institute of Architects Press, 1990. exterior photo from across railroad tracks, p86.

Dell Upton. America's Architectural Roots, Ethnic Groups that Built America. Washington: The Preservation Press, 1986. exterior facade photo of front, p47.

Dell Upton and John Michael Vlach, ed. Common Places: Readings in American Vernacular Architecture. Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press, 1986. ISBN 0820307491. LC 84016167. NA705.C58 1986.

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at  Find books about Shotgun House


Web Resources
Links on Shotgun House

OUR LITTLE HEAVEN a personal web page including a photo of a shotgun house (down the page a bit), and some of its story. Find books about Vernacular Architecture

Shotgun House at ArchiplanetFind, add, and edit info at the all-buildings collaboration

We appreciate your  suggestions  for links about Shotgun House.

 Great Buildings  Search   Model Viewing Tips   DW   Discussion   Blogs   Books   Archiplanet   ArchitectureWeek  
Subscribe free to weekly design and building newsletters by ArchitectureWeek

Quick Search by name of Building, Architect, or Place:   
Examples:  "Fallingwater",  "Wright",  "Paris"       Advanced Search
Send this to a friend | Contribute | Subscribe | Link | Credits | Media Kit | Photo Licensing | Suggestions

Special thanks to our sustaining subscribers including, and Saniflo Upflush.

© 1994-2013 Artifice, Inc. All Rights Reserved.