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10 Different Types Of Colonial Houses

This is the ultimate blog and photo gallery on American colonial houses. We define what colonial house style is (a phrase that is widely used), outline the eight categories of colonial buildings (with photos), and then offer a large photo gallery with numerous examples of colonial houses (historical and new).

In the United States, colonial architecture is most typically found on the eastern seaboard, where most of the population lived while colonial architecture ruled dominant (1700 to 1800).

Below is a link to our comprehensive article on colonial house styles, which includes multiple examples and a list of the various varieties.

Understanding the Colonial House Style

It’s a broad residential architectural style that refers to houses constructed in the United States during the early 17th and early 19th centuries. The style was at its peak from 1700 until the American Revolutionary War, which makes sense considering that the United States was still a British colony at the time. Hence the name Colonial.

Colonial home styles include British Colonial (the most prevalent in the United States), Dutch Colonial, French Colonial, and Spanish Colonial. Different colonial house types were built in different parts of the United States, including saltbox, cape cod, Georgian, and southern colonial houses.

Below are a variety of colonial homes, largely in the saltbox style, which is derived from British colonial architecture. The second section features examples of new houses built in the colonial style.4

Types of Colonial Houses

There are eight different types of colonial houses.

1. British Colonial

British colonial architecture is the most common type of colonial architecture in the United States, making sense given that the United States was a British colony for nearly 200 years.

Several sub-styles can be classified as British colonial architecture.

The list is as follows: (you no doubt have heard and seen them all).

a. Saltbox Design

A side profile of a saltbox-style house with a saltbox roof.

A side profile of a saltbox-style house with a saltbox roof is seen here.

b. Cape Cod Design

Cape cod style house with shuttered windows and a trio of gabled dormers.

In Hyannis, Massachusetts, USA, a home with a grey shingle façade and black window shutters.

c. Georgian Style Illustration

Georgian style house with cream siding, covered side porches, shuttered windows, and an upper balcony.

Longfellow’s House in Cambridge, Massachusetts, circa 1893, is an example of Georgian colonial architecture.

d. The Mid-Atlantic

Mid-Atlantic colonial house with plenty of gabled dormers and clerestory and shuttered windows adorned with flags.

Historic Hammond-Harwood House, built in the year 1774 in Annapolis, MD, is one of the finest preserved residences from the British Colonial era.

2. Spanish Colonial

Old colonial Zevallos house in Guadeloupe with expansive covered porches.

Old Spanish Colonial Zevallos House located in Guadeloupe.

Corner view of the house in quarter with covered terrace framed with wrought iron railings.

House in the French Quarter, New Orleans, built in the Spanish colonial style of the 18th century.

3. Dutch Colonial

Dutch colonial house with white horizontal siding, shuttered windows, gabled dormers, and a stone chimney.

A Dutch colonial mansion in Williamsburg, Virginia.

4. French Colonial

Destrehan Plantation in colonial style with white pillars and a trio of dormers.

Destrehan Plantation in Louisiana, built in the year 1787, is a good example of a French colonial-style house. It was renovated again in 1840, this time with Greek Revival architectural characteristics.

Manor Boucher de Niverville in Trois Rivieres with dormers and shuttered windows.

Built in 1668, the Manor Boucher de Niverville in Trois Rivieres.

The outside of Château Ramezay in Montreal, Canada – an example of a French colonial style house, and an example of a French colonial house in Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu, India.

In Hanoi, Vietnam, the Ho Chi Minh Presidential Palace is an example of French colonial architecture.

5. German Colonial

Stone houses situated on located on both sides of Ben Gurion Boulevard, Haifa, Israel.

The modest stone cottages of the German Colony, Haifa, Israel, on both sides of Ben Gurion Boulevard.

Kolmanskop, a German colonization hamlet in Namibia’s desert, is now a ghost town. With the end of German colonization and the conclusion of WWII, the former German town was left.

Photo Example of 10 Examples of American Colonial Houses

Below is a wonderful collection of ten various colonial houses in the United States.

1. Nantucket Colonial (about 1735) with Wood Shingle Exterior

Colonial house in Nantucket with gray siding, stone skirting, and a bifurcated staircase leading to the home entry.

Source: Redfin

A traditional British colonial-style house located in Nantucket, MA, is shown in the picture above (a great place to visit when you’re around)

Observe the steep gabled roof, sharply terminating eaves, outside shutters, and symmetrical rectangle shape, all of which are features of British colonial architecture in the United States.

2. Modern Yellow Colonial House with Black Shutters in Maine

Modern yellow colonial house with black shutters.

Source: Redfin

Above is a colonial-style home that was built in 1999. It has 3,477 square feet, 5 bedrooms, and 3.5 bathrooms.

3. Maine’s Groves-Hodge House (circa 1740)

Grove's Hodge colonial house with chimneys, plenty of windows, and a lush lawn.

Source: Redfin

William and Mary Groves built the house above around 1740.

The property consisted of 100 acres at the time, with two islands. They ran a trading post on the land. The house has changed hands several times since then. Mary and William Ann Dykes bought the house in 1983 and began the restoration work it to its former splendor in the 18th century. This house has a total of 5 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms spread across an area of 4,500 square feet.

4. Red and Yellow 18th-century colonial house on the Kennebec River

Red and yellow houses in Kennebec River surrounded by lush greenery.

Source: Redfin

Captain John Reed previously had an 8,000 square foot red and yellow colonial home in the 18th century. It is located in Maine, on the Kennebec River. The yellow section of the house is the original structure. The red portion is a barn that has been transformed into a residential addition. It’s a rambling mansion on a beautiful piece of land.

5. White Colonial Mansion in Camden, Maine (circa 1863)

White colonial house with shutters and dormers.

Camden, Maine is a must-see destination for anyone visiting the United States Eastern Seaboard. I’ve been twice and really enjoy the town. It is touristy, yet the money from tourists allows the town to maintain its beauty and the many colonial mansions that dot the streets. A famous colonial mansion in Camden is shown above. It was built in 1863 and has 7,000 square feet with 7 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms. As you can see in the picture above, it’s been meticulously restored and remodeled into its exquisite form that you can see now while maintaining the original interior.

6. Red Front Door on a White Colonial (circa 1810)

Large white colonial home with red front door.

Source: Redfin

The narrow and deep white colonial mansion pictured above was completed around 1810. While the Federal style had largely displaced the colonial design at that time, many people still preferred the simpler Colonial style.

The image above is an excellent example of classic colonial dwelling architecture. It’s a big house with 4,107 square feet, 6 bedrooms, and 3.5 baths. It covers approximately an acre of land.

7. White Colonial House (circa 1808)

Colonial house with white siding, gable rooflines, and a covered entry porch.

Source: Redfin

The colonial mansion depicted above is located on a river in Connecticut.

It has 4,030 square feet, 3 bedrooms, and 3.5 bathrooms and was built in 1808. What’s intriguing about this house is that it has a historic interior but isn’t run down in the least. Yes, there have been some renovations throughout the years, but the inside gives the impression of living in an early nineteenth-century colonial home.

8. Colonial House with Wood Shingle Exterior on a Large Property (circa 1840)

Colonial house with wood shingle exterior and a red front door.

Source: Redfin

This equally magnificent wood-shingle colonial home is on an incredible 1.03-acre property. This property, which was built in 1840, has 3,240 square feet, 3 bedrooms, and 3.5 bathrooms.

9. Connecticut Colonial with a Three-Storey White Steep Roof (circa 1900)

Connecticut colonial house with three story and a steep roof.

Source: Redfin

Spacious white classic Connecticut Colonial mansion, comparable to the house on “Who’s the Boss?” that I’m often seeing on TV. This home has 5 bedrooms and 4.5 baths and is 5,027 square feet. The house is much bigger than it appears from the outside, with a massive rambling addition at the back.

10. Rhode Island’s Blue Colonial on Water (circa 1797)

Colonial house with blue siding lined with white trims.

Source: Redfin

The home shown above strikes a mix between traditional preservation and modern conveniences. Although it has certainly been refurbished to its current beautiful decor over the years, many old interior components remain. This house has 4 bedrooms and 2 baths and is 3,445 square feet.