National Park Seminary, Japanese Bungalow, 2801 Linden Lane, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD
Significance: The Japanese bungalow is one of the oldest buildings on campus. It was begun in 1898, the first year of the Cassedys' building campaign, and completed in 1899. The clubhouse has a combination of eastern and western architectural designs. In its original incarnation, the standard bungalow design was transformed into a more exotic, oriental structure by the introduction of gracefully curved upturned eaves. Bungalows were a popular building style for middle-class suburban homes from the 1890s to 1920s. Their ubiquitous presence in American suburbia made them quintessential emblems of idyllic domestic life. It was not unusual to apply exotic motifs, like the Japanese upturned eaves, to a bungalow design. Exotic forms, in this case Asian, were intended to reflect the owner's sophistication and refinement. Asian designs were popular with Americans since the China Trade was established in the seventeenth century. The reopening of trade with Japan in the 1850s after years of isolation, the publication of Edward Morse's "Japanese Homes and Their Surroundings" in 1885, and the exhibition of Japanese houses at World Fairs, all contributed to the increased popularity of Japanese goods and designs around the turn of the twentieth century. Many wealthy Americans had Japanese rooms in their houses and less affluent ones purchased Japanese wares. One of the most common features of Japanese-inspired house designs were upturned-eaves like those on the Chiopi clubhouse. Since the eighteenth century, wealthy English and American estate owners have incorporated Asian garden follies on their grounds. The Japanese bungalow's neighbor, the Japanese pagoda, fits this prototype.
Survey number: HABS MD-1109-K
Building/structure dates: 1899 Initial Construction
Building/structure dates: 1931 Subsequent Work