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Major Jared B Fisher House

Gregg Twp, Centre County, PA

The Major Jared B. Fisher Residence was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977. Portions of the content on this web page were adapted from a copy of the original nomination document. [1]


The Major Jared B. Fisher Residence was erected in 1856 as a 2 1/4 story brick building with gable roof with a similar kitchen wing to the rear and a 1-story gabled, brick summer kitchen off this wing.

The exterior of the house features a 5-bay symmetrical facade with 6-over-6 windows with simple wooden lintels and sills. The entablature contains a banded architrave, paneled frieze and eaves, 5 rectangular eyelets, Victorian brackets, and a bold cornice. The entrance-way contains a recessed 4-panelled door with transom above, flanked by free-standing Doric piers supporting an entablature. Gable ends feature the returns of the entablature, consistent entablature under the eaves, and paired chimneys on the roof. The west end of the house features a 2-story bay, and both gable ends have windows with frames ornamented with Greek fret. The only exterior change is the addition of a porch along the front of the house. The first porch was a small porch covering only the doorway and featured design consistent with the semi-Greek Revival entablature beneath the main roof and the Doric inspiration of the white fence. An earlier photograph (dated by the ages of the pictured children to 1877) show that a newer style porch had been added to the front of the house. A porch of this style (ca. 1877) remains on the kitchen wing. The present porch is probably turn-of-the-century.

Other exterior additions are the extension of the summer kitchen about 20 feet to the east on the first story (to provide more kitchen space above, a walkway, and bake oven below -- probably 1870's) and the enclosure of a 2nd story rear porch (recent years).

As the house occupies a sloping site, the basement (full) is exposed toward the rear.

The interior of the house reflects the exterior symmetry and remains faithful to the Greek aesthetic. Moldings are wide, eared, and trimmed. Perhaps most surprising is the general spaciousness and openness one encounters.

The stairway is late-Colonial in inspiration. It is elegant and restrained, stairs running without landings to the second and third floors. The handrail is of cherry wood.

The Major Fisher residence had no fireplace, and wood-burning stoves would have heated the various rooms and a large iron range to handle the cooking.

The house today is in an excellent state of preservation and is well cared for.


The Major Jared B. Fisher residence is an excellent example of rural Pennsylvania architecture of the years just prior to the Civil War and reflects the inception of Victorian eclecticism in its combination of Greek Revival and Gothic devices. The house stands today in an excellent state of preservation. That the house has changed very little over the years can be documented thanks to the presence of early photographic views.

Major Jared B. Fisher was born in Berks County in 1829 and came to Centre County in 1842. His father, Adam Fisher, was engaged in milling and merchandising and on his death in 1866, Jared took over his father's business interests. Jared Fisher continued as one of Centre County's most prominent merchants.

Major Fisher also is an important figure in the early history of military organizations in this county. He was captain of the Marion Infantry, Penn's Valley volunteer military organization from 1850-1859, and in 1858 organized both the Bellefonte Fencibles and a cavalry company in Harris and Ferguson Townships. Fisher was a close friend of General George Buchanan. In June of 1852, Major Fisher was elected Brigade Inspector of the Third Brigade 14th Division and held the office by successive election until 1859, at which time he was forced to withdraw from active military pursuits for reasons of health.


Linn, John Blair. History of Centre and Clinton Counties. Philadelphia, L. H. Everts. 1883.

Centre Reporter, newspaper, Centre Hall, Pa.; January 2, 1896.

Interview with Mr. Charles Fisher Snyder, grandson of Major J. B. Fisher, June 18, 1976.

  1. Ramsey, Gregory abd Cohen, Madeline L., Major Jared B. Fisher Residence, nomination document, 1976, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.

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