36 Responses

  1. Suzanne Kane, ASID

    Thank you, Lesa for sharing this beautiful piece of Florida history. Florida vernacular is one of the most interesting vernaculars in the United States because of the diversity of the people that settled here. As Floridians, we are fortunate to be able to enjoy global architectural influences in our own backyard. Beautiful pictures!

  2. Lana Bonomo

    American Architectural Styles Along Rockledge Drive
    Driving along Rockledge Drive is a treat for the eyes. Whenever I am in the area I always take a detour to enjoy the beautiful homes. The many styles and homes with a combination of styles makes me wonder about the original owners and what they wanted in a home: to show off wealth, to accommodate a large family, or maybe just to enjoy the water. The Florida Vernacular style is appealing to me. Building without a hired architect takes a brave individual. These owners must have known what they needed and wanted in a home and didn’t want to be swayed by an architect. As a child I saw my parents build a home. They worked with a builder and they had a large say in the floor planning. The result was a home that met my parent’s needs for space and privacy. My mother could have lived there the rest of their lives; after all it was one level with wide halls and doorways to be practical for their elderly futures. Unfortunately, we moved out of state. But, they learned from their mistakes and built their next house accordingly which they still live in today.

    With the homes being reflective of their time I was surprised to see only one was declared a historic home. According to the text in the Figarsky v. Historic District Commission, the owner was not allowed to demolish his building because it blocked the view of construction. (Tyler, Ligebel, and Tyler) Does this mean that the Queen Anne home on Rockledge Drive was in danger of demolition? Or was the price low enough to be an incentive for Brevard County to purchase?

    Works Cited
    Tyler, Norman, Ted J. Ligibel, Ilene R. Tyler. Historic Preservation. New York: W. W. Norton and Company, 2009

  3. Stephany Jones

    It is so cool to be able to learn about places near by that hold so much architectural and historical value to our society. I had no idea about any of these houses… and Rockledge is only a fifteen minute drive away! I love the examples of all the different kinds of houses and seeing how Florida has influenced the styles of each of them whether by color or actual architecture. All the different styles on one drive would be very nice to see. I will have to look it up and take a drive that way. Florida is a place full of rich architecture and lots of history, and I am glad we have a piece of it practically in our backyards. It is like traveling back in time just looking at some of the houses even in these pictures. Of course some definitely look a bit more modern but you can get my point. Seeing the way that just being in Florida has influenced those buildings interests me. You have to wonder what factors went into play to change those aspects. Were the changes for safety purposes because of our waters or environment, were some just to please the owners and of course the factor of time, when exactly each house was built. Just a little something to ponder over while taking a drive down that road I suppose. Anyhow, over all I just wanted to say that the pictures were quite interesting and love finding out about new places like this that are near by. It gives me something to go and explore sometime or another when I am bored and need something to do.

  4. Rhonda

    Very interesting! Thank you!

  5. Coral Moyle

    Though I have never ventured down Rockledge Drive, I would love to take a trip down this lovely road. I think it is very interesting that you can tell the time periods of the house by examining the outside features of the building, such as the roof, windows, color, and structure. Each house has its own unique characteristics that set them apart from each other. In some communities today you can drive down the one street and see the same house four times, they maybe in a different color but same set up. But I feel that when you drive down this road that not what you see, instead you see different time periods and different views on how a house should look. Some have metal roofs while others have shingles, some have arched windows and some have the rectangle style. I personally love the Georgian style. The pavilions with the tall columns pulls you in and you can see yourself sitting on the pavilion reading a book in the sun on a summer day maybe with a glass of lemonade! I absolutely love the metal roof, that is one aspect that I will look for when I am ready to purchase a room. I love the sound it makes when rain hits the roof. Another feature of the Georgian style is the yellow color with white trim. Though I am not a fan of yellow homes this one seems to fit. It gives it a sunny Floridian feeling. I am defiantly going to have to make a trip to Rockledge and see these beautiful houses for myself.

  6. jennifer

    Architectural Styles

    Rockledge Drive has provided many hours of beautiful distraction. I will clarify this, by sharing some of my experiences along this historically rich architectural road. I first became acquainted with this road as a member of the Team in Training, Leukemia Society’s Marathon Team. As a member of the team, I began my quest to raise money for the fight against Leukemia, while sponsoring my daughters friend, who fights the battle daily. A close friend and I began our runs with many other runners each Sunday morning at 5 am over a period of several months; our runs lengthening from three miles all the way up to twenty. I have always been interested in interior design and architecture; and the numerous styles of homes and the different stages of aging of the Rockledge Drive homes became a topic of conversation at some point during every run. A varied and rich menu to savor while trying to ignoring my physical limitations!
    Some of my favorite homes became those with front porches, not only for the aesthetic beauty, but for the sense of community that they bring to a neighborhood. A front porch is an often overlooked architectural feature on many homes today. Much more focus is given to the back porch, and a sprawling entertainment space on the rear of a home built around pools, spas, fire pits and decks (which I love as well). The front porches often held cool water, shelter from lighting, and always a smile and wave of encouragement as we made our way down and then back again. My favorite porch is a wrap a round, preferably on all four sides, but usually only seen on three. This seems to be predominant on the Florida Vernacular and Queen Anne Style. I featured the “Dog Trot” home in a past precedent study; this is also considered a Southern Vernacular style of home and is designed to endure the elements of living in the south. A wonderful architectural team made up of husband and wife specialize in southern architecture; check them out at Frederick & Frederick Architects.

  7. Catherine Biegler

    I have never driven along Rockledge Drive before. After reading the blog about its abundance of historical architecture I am planning to take a nice slow drive and enjoy all the wonderful architectural styles. I just wish that the app you mentioned was available for android phones, it seems that it is only available for apple products.

    I also had no idea that Rockledge was founded in 1887 or that it was the oldest incorporated municipality. I plan to read up more on the histories of Brevard County.

    I have to admit I think one of my favorite architectural styles is Tudor. I like the muntin patterns and half timbers. I do find it interesting how each style adapts to where it is being built. Such as with the Tudor having a wrap-around porch and metal roof, this really does give it Florida flair.

    Another style that I agree is beautiful is the Georgian style. I also think that by combining this with adaptations designed for Florida make it very appealing. I like its symmetry along with the columns. This is definitely a home that I could live in.

    It’s funny how the last house you wrote about looks like so many I had seen while growing up on Long Island. The box shape and a sparing use of windows is so common. There was even a development called “Salt Box Path” that had numerous home of this style. Although I did not see it combined with the Gothic elements. I find it an interesting combination and one I am not sure I like.

  8. Bryan Mozo

    Wow, what an interesting and informative article! I myself have never actually driven down Rockledge drive, despite being born in the area, but am planning on it next time I’m in that part of town. I really love being able to go out and see a large mix of different historical styles of houses in certain areas. I find it so interesting that a lot of the historic homes have very Floridian twists like the metal roofs and pastel colors.

    I’ve also noticed going out to different historical parts of the country how a lot of times you find houses with a mix of different architectural elements that are combined to create a home. I think it’s interesting how you talked about the fact that a lot of these homes can be misrepresented because of a few architectural features and look like a totally different style of architecture.

    I also really love all of the history of Brevard County that can be seen around Rockledge drive, it’s so neat to look at historical homes and try and deduce how people lived and built their homes to suit their needs. I never knew that Rockledge was also the oldest municipality in Brevard County. I really hope that sometime soon I get a chance to drive around Rockledge Drive and see all these gorgeous homes and really think about all the history around that area of town.

  9. Saidee

    One of my favorite past times are afternoon drives to hidden architectural gems that tell a historical story and I am happy to say you have uncovered one to add to my list. I have not yet taken this trip down Rockledge road and one that I will be looking forward to experiencing thanks to your great descriptive observations you have shared.
    Your eccentric description of the Georgian style home with the Florida accent was well suited and I can tell you enjoyed your archeological finds. Many homes in Florida have their owners leave their transient footprint through their architectural accents adding to what makes them only found in Florida, one of a kind.
    I couldn’t get enough of all your different summaries for each styled home. It was great to read your observations and then take the second look at the photo to discover what I did not see at first glance and I thank you for that. I have saved your post as a resource and one I am sure I will refer to numerous times.

  10. Jamie Goodwin

    This has been my favorite article by far, mostly because I am exceptionally fond of the Rockledge Drive area. My husband and I frequently ride our bicycles from Osario’s in Historic Cocoa Village to the opposite end of Rockledge Drive. My husband often becomes frustrated with me because I pay more attention to the architecture than I do the road ahead. I cannot help myself but to become distracted while riding because the craftsmanship and detail of the homes really strike my fancy. I thought that your explanation of the pictured homes was very helpful. I am sure our entire preservation class has benefited from reading the descriptions you have carefully written. My favorite house is the Queen Anne style that is soon to be under construction. I too, cannot wait to view the progress on the restoration. I hope that they choose several colors to really help show off the historical value of this home. Furthermore, I feel that the appropriate contrast in colors will actually aid in enhancing the asymmetry of the home. There is another house similar to this one down the road a bit that has vivid colors such as purples and greens. This sounds strange but it does the home much justice and was clearly envisioned by someone with a keen eye. I have long imagined buying a historic home like the Queen Anne. It would be quite the experience to be responsible for the restoration process and choices. I believe it would be a bit overwhelming, but I think the research and accomplishment would be enough of a reward to go at it and I can only imagine how cool it would be to live in those old bones.

  11. Jan C Reed

    Rockledge Drive is one of my favorite streets with the historical architectural styles and the wonderful view of the Intercostal waterway (yes I am one of those people who drive slow because the scenery is so enjoyable, but without the flashers!) The oaks with Spanish moss leaning over the roadway and the palm trees are also a special part of this winding road. The architectural field guide mentioned in the blog will be of great help to me and I will try and figure out how to apply it to my smart phone, but if not the old fashioned book will be helpful.
    Many of the architectural styles in Florida are a combination of elements, that as you said, leave the structure open to interpretation; which makes the style of homes so fascinating. There are so many homes in our area that are a combination of various architectural styles, but uniquely Florida. The Vernacular Florida house is a perfect example with pastel colors, porches and multi pitched roofs that were originally designed to try and keep its occupants cool. Now it has become a very popular style, even though we all have air conditioning.
    The Georgian and Victorian (as I knew it before I started taking interior design classes) are two or my favorite styles. I love the symmetry, the columns and yellow color of the Georgian house pictured although it definitely has the Florida influence with the metal roof and yellow color. But, I also love the many colors, asymmetry, detailed woodwork, porches, verandas and turrets found in the Queen Ann home. I think my favorite part of any one of these homes is the porch which is a place to meet your neighbors, enjoy the breeze and just relax with a glass of lemonade.

  12. Kathleen Miron

    I knew Rockledge was older but I did not know the history of it . I have never been down Rockledge Drive so now it is on my “to do” list. The diversity in the styles are all intent, that shows me that architectural styles do not have to fit into an area of the same. I can see the differences when I compare New York houses to Floridian houses. On the Vernacular style the Floridian touch is a larger porch that provides more shade due to climate differences. Bright colors do not stand out in my mind for northern houses. The Tudor style is very popular on Long Island, New York but the roof has a very steep pitch and the houses vary in sizes and I have never seen a porch on them. This one on Rockledge Drive is truly a Floridian Tudor. The Georgian style,” as is” I have seen up state New York. Once again color on the house is Floridian. The Queen Anne seemed to have popped up everywhere. The New England Colonial style of coarse is common up North in standard white. Floridians again put their touches on it to make it accommodating. I like the idea of Floridians changing classic styles just enough to still identify each one.
    I would like to see a map of layers that shows the houses built at what time and the changes that were significant to the community. I am glad I got to know the history of Rockledge before I viewed these houses.

  13. Michael J. Boonstra

    The Georgian house pictured is a McMansion that was built only a few years ago. It replaced an amazing Queen Anne style home that going to be demolished but fortunately was moved by barge to Delannoy Ave. in Cocoa Village. It is now the Parrish Grove Inn bed and breakfast and you can view it on their website at http://www.parrishgroveinn.com

    Rockledge had two other Historic Districts, Barton Ave. and Valencia Road. Both run west off Rockledge Dr. and the Valencia Road district has a historical marker and masonry columns marking its entrance. Barton is primarily Victorian styles and Valencia is Mediterranean Revival. The Valencia homes were designed by the County’s first architect Richard W. Rummell, Jr. who designed most of the important buildings in our area.

    I have a local history and genealogy blog you might be interested in checking out as well.

  14. Jamie Goodwin

    (Week 11)

    I once again took a long bike ride with my husband down Rockledge Drive and I noticed that the Tudor house that you blogged about is for sale. Of course my curiosity got the best of me and I decided to research the sale price and see if I could find any inside photos. The sale price is $899,000 and is 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Here is how the listing (http://hotpads.com/real-estate/1201-Rockledge-Drive-Rockledge-FL-32955–3k7f7zxz7nwrb) describes the house…

    “English Tudor home along the banks of the Indian River. Historically registered and lovingly maintained. Waterfront home with private dock, pool and guest house. Main home has 10 ft ceilings, 3 bedrooms, 1 bath and 2 half baths. Merritt Island pine wood floors, stain glass transoms, a basement plus 4 wood-burning fireplaces. The attic is a blank canvas waiting to be designed. Kitchen remodeled in ’08. Guest home was also designed in ’08: 1 bedroom, 1 bath, a private laundry plus a 1 car garage Brokered And Advertised By: Trafford Realty Co. Listing Agent: Lori Cody”

    They say the house is 6.352 sq, ft.but judging by the photos this must include the guest house because the house looks fairly average in size. I was kind of let down t see the cookie cutter kitchen with standard oak cabinets and white appliances. The outside of the house makes you think that the inside would have much more charm than it actually does.

  15. Michelle

    The house you describe as Tudor looks very Arts & Crafts to me…

  16. jamie goodwin

    I once again took a long bike ride with my husband down Rockledge Drive and I noticed that the Tudor house that you blogged about is for sale. Of course my curiosity got the best of me and I decided to research the sale price and see if I could find any inside photos. The sale price is $899,000 and is 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Here is how the listing (http://hotpads.com/real-estate/1201-Rockledge-Drive-Rockledge-FL-32955–3k7f7zxz7nwrb) describes the house…

    “English Tudor home along the banks of the Indian River. Historically registered and lovingly maintained. Waterfront home with private dock, pool and guest house. Main home has 10 ft ceilings, 3 bedrooms, 1 bath and 2 half baths. Merritt Island pine wood floors, stain glass transoms, a basement plus 4 wood-burning fireplaces. The attic is a blank canvas waiting to be designed. Kitchen remodeled in ’08. Guest home was also designed in ’08: 1 bedroom, 1 bath, a private laundry plus a 1 car garage Brokered And Advertised By: Trafford Realty Co. Listing Agent: Lori Cody”

    They say the house is 6.352 sq, ft.but judging by the photos this must include the guest house because the house looks fairly average in size. I was kind of let down t see the cookie cutter kitchen with standard oak cabinets and white appliances. The outside of the house makes you think that the inside would have much more charm than it actually does.

  17. Alison Carver

    Rockledge Drive is definitely a local jewel. The vast array of architectural styles lining the roadway is a pure treat to the eyes. I have experienced many a detours along this road on my trek between Melbourne and Cocoa. There is so much variety and diversity present, although I have driven by numerous times, I still feel like l can find something new to look at each and every time. I have also had the pleasure to experience Rockledge Drive via the river view. (Sometimes being married to a commercial fisherman has its perks!) Another stretch of roadway worth mentioning is Tropical Trail. This is another local favorite featuring brilliant works of architecture ranging in a variety of styles, captivating from both land and river views.

    Of the few houses featured in this blog posting, the Queen Ann has my heart completely. This style of home has always been one of my favorites. Ironically, I am usually attracted to a very modern design with simple, clean lines lacking in an abundance of needless detail. This is not, however, how I would describe a Queen Ann home. Aside from the historic essence I associate with a Queen Ann style, that being of a large family and central hub of neighborhood activity, I think I am drawn to the balanced, yet asymmetrical eclectic vibe of the style. It almost feels like the structure is a result of years of evolving with continual renovations and additions, giving the structure its numerous layers of façade, rooflines, and diversity of styles. There is a particular Queen Ann home, long since abandoned, located off US1 almost directly across from the Ice Plant, that I have had a love affair with for many years. This home goes unnoticed by most because it is hidden from public view on US1 by gorgeous oak tree on the property. Line of sight by river way is how I first discovered it myself. Last I heard, the home is still owned by the family trust, but because of differing opinions on the property’s future, it still sits abandoned. My husband and I even risked the act of sneaking on the property to capture a few of our engagement photos a few years back, using the shattered home as our background. If I ever come across a gene in a bottle, that home will be mine!

  18. Brandon Bourne


    I just wanted to share some of my own thoughts about houses on the streets the hug against the indian river. I have never been to Rockledge drive to see any of the houses that you speak of here, but from what I can see it must be an awesome site to drive through slowly and just admire. what is crazy to me is that you can find all of these different style within such a close distance of each other and not only in the same town but on the same street!

    Anyway getting back to what I was originally thinking, there is another street that I personally use every day just about in order to get to work everyday and i purposefully drive slow so that I can take a peek and some of the houses I see. the street is in Merritt Island and its called Courtenay Pkwy i believe. All the houses just like the ones you have showing in these pictures look different from each other. While i have never actually stopped to think about the specific architectural style used to create the house, just thinking back to all the different houses i like, one would easily be able to tell that they are all unique in their own way. The houses in the area are obviously very very expensive because of their location as waterfront property so you would expect them to be nice but besides from the price of the houses i personally think that neighborhoods that have diversity such as these two streets (the one you talked about and the one I’m speaking of) helps to make a the town look more welcoming. I may be crazy but when i see a street with houses that all look the same i feel like its a bond between the people of the town and an outsider would not feel as welcomed as if they were to see each house as their own individual structure. I hope that makes sense to you haha. By the way, my favorite picture is the second one you have shown in your article. Thanks for posting


  19. Amber Maiwald

    This is a great blog because it names and describes many of the architectural styles that are found along Rockledge Drive. I have seen many of these styles around the Indian River near Melbourne and I never knew the names of them or that they were built based a particular style. I have never been to Rockledge Drive but if I ever end up going, I will have the knowledge to identify these styles. I particularly like the Florida Vernacular Style, the Tudor Style, and the Spanish Mission Style. I like that the Florida Vernacular Style uses pastel colors for the exterior colors of the houses. I also like the wrap around/semi wrap around porches that this style has. I really like large porches because I think that they bring a homey feeling to the house. What I like about the Tudor Style is how the dark trim contrasts with the light exterior color. This type of style reminds me of my aunt and uncle’s house and of the good times and memories that were had there. I like the Spanish Mission Style because it is still unique to me. I have never seen this style until I got to Florida. I think that this style shows the Spanish roots of the state as well as the area. I particularly like the roof on this style. It is very unique and it compliments the style very well.
    It was also interesting to read about the history of Rockledge and how the citrus industry and the lodging industry had a major impact on the town economically.

  20. Melanie McAboy

    This is such an interesting article, I have yet to take a trip this way to see these homes but they all look beautiful and who would have thought you could find so much diversity in one location? When I hear about interesting stories like this I always wonder the history behind them. How did each home so different from the next end up in such close proximity to the other? I can’t imagine it was for practical purposes. As you mentioned about the colonial style home, most are found in New England because the style is pertinent to the climate. A colonial style home seems unpractical in Florida as we don’t need the slanted roofs to help keep snow from piling up.
    I am especially attracted to the vernacular homes that can be found here in Florida. What attracts me the most to these homes is that each are unique in their own way. I am also particularly fond of the Queen Ann style home. I find it interesting that this style was only popular in America for 20 years. It seems much too attractive to only make it twenty years. It could be due to the practicality of the homes, but that is just a guess.
    I grew up in New England so again I am used to seeing the colonial style homes in New England. I am also familiar with the Tudor style as I have spent a lot of time in Connecticut and have noticed many which reside there. It’s nice to see them spread out in Florida regardless of where they are more commonly found because it brings diversity to Florida.

  21. Daniel MacLeod

    After reading this article it makes me want to hop into a car drive down Rockledge Drive. All the houses look amazing, some more than others, but if someone were to just wonder the streets there it would feel like home, mainly because there is so many different styles that are prevalent on the road! You have to enjoy how each house has its little twist and alteration to a style that makes it unique to the state of Florida. Ever since coming to Florida I figured that I would see more Spanish style houses because I imagined Florida to be like California. Growing up on the west coast of America, there were plenty of buildings that are Spanish Mission style in California on the coast, but here in Florida there is not nearly as much. It was surprising at first, but the more that I have been here the more that I see that Florida is a very very different place than California. My favorite style that is shown here is definitely the Tudor Style, I do not know if it is because of the way that the house blends with the its surroundings or the style itself, but it really catches my eye. I love the wrap around porch because it really takes advantage of the wonderful Florida weather and gives a pleasant living space in the outside climate. I am not sure about the mix between lumber and stucco, but it works in this particular house. Now my least favorite is the Gothic/Colonial, it does not scream Florida at me. It screams take me back to Vermont, it is too plain to be in Florida, it looks like the people who live there just want to stay inside and sit by fire. Even though it is 75 degrees outside.

  22. Emily WIndsor

    (Week 14)

    First off I must say I really liked your comparison of bird watching to this historic drive.
    Secondly, these pictures of yours are once again beautiful and they make me want to take a drive down to see Rockledge Drive myself.

    I have lived in Florida for about four years now, but I never would have guessed that the Floridian vernacular style was multi-pitched roof lines, porches and pastel colors (such as pink). I understand that you said this vernacular style was made for Florida’s climate; I get the roof and the porch, but I was wondering why the pastel colors were chosen. OF all the styles the Spanish Mission style of architecture was the easiest to spot for me because of the tiled roof and stucco walls. I do love the Spanish culture, but I do not think I could live in their home styles.

    My least favorite styles were the Queen Anne Style, “Victorian” and the Colonial mixed with the Gothic Revival. I dislike the lack of color from the “Victorian” and I do not really like tall chimney. I do not like the “salt box” shape of the colonial style and Gothic Revival elements, sadly. However, my favorite is Floridian interpretation of the Georgian style. I like the second floor wrap-around porch. It also reminds me of the house from the movie “The Notebook”. It is simply beautiful. I do also like the Tudor style with the Floridian twist. The thin windows are Tudor, but my favorite part of any home is a porch.

  23. ahmed almazrouei

    There are to many places that I recommended to visit when any body asked me as Rockledge. Here are some useful information that I found about it online. Rockledge was officially founded on August 7, 1887, making it the oldest incorporated municipality in Brevard County. The name Rockledge, attributed to Gardner S. Hardee, an early settler, comes from the many ledges of coquina rock that line the Indian River[citation needed]. Other sources refer to a man named Cephas Bailey Magruder, who built his home after settling in the area in 1876 near the Indian River. Magruder called his home “the rockledge home” and the name was eventually attributed to the whole town. It was originally referred to as Rock Ledge; the two-word name persisted through the 19th century. Early industry in the area was based on the citrus trade and accommodation for tourists traveling to South Florida via the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway of the Indian River.[citation needed]
    Towards the early part of the 19th century, Rockledge was known as a resort town. In the winter months, the population would rise from 200 to almost 2,000 people. Up until about 1911, access to Rockledge was via boat and rail. Steamboats in the Indian River connected with Henry Flagler’s trains to bring people to the North. Small boats, sailboats, and small launches frequently stopped to unload freight and passengers. Most of the tourists in this time were wealthy and would use the boats to connect to the rail system at that time. After World War I, the automobile allowed the average person to travel to the area and their encampments dotted the area. The Dixie Highway was completed in 1915 and spanned most of Florida. In the 1920s, US1 was paved and replaced the Dixie Highway.[10]
    President Grover Cleveland, still in his first term, and his wife visited the city in 1888.
    The town had several large hotels in the late 19th century to the early 20th century that catered to Northern tourists escaping cold winters. The condominiums are located at the previous site of Hotel Indian River.


  24. Elizabeth Kiser

    Identifying American Architectural Styles Along Scenic Rockledge Drive

    This article on the architectural styles along Rockledge Drive, struck me the most because I love the homes on this road! I remember when I was little looking at some of these homes during the bus ride to school, or on bicycle rides and having a fascination in them. I would always wonder how big their library could be, or even if they had secret passages because the houses are so old. My fascination only grew into looking at the architecture behind them now. The wrap around porches, and the different style roofs, all the different aspects that make them unique in age.
    Each of these houses in the article, and others that are not, have stood the test of time. They have withstood hurricanes, floods, and anything else that mother nature, and people, can throw at them. Hopefully, with each homeowner, they preserve these old houses and keep them for many more decades. Wouldn’t it be a wonderful thing to see these houses another 100 years from now?
    With the pictures that you have provided in the article, I can see no real difference in the way they were when I was a child. Other than a new coat of paint, or a repaired roof, the only thing that has changed has been the age. As a child, you cannot grasp the age of the house, just that it is old and pretty. As an adult, you can look at a house and realize it was built about 100 or more years ago.

  25. Tiffiny Ruehman

    This topic is very special to me because I am a resident of Rockledge. I have recently discovered this area myself because my son goes to school there and I know people who live in the neighborhood. I live on the “busy” side of Rockledge and never knew that the quite neighborhood existed. My passion is architecture and driving through this area is a real inspiration.
    Most of the pictures posted I have actually driven by many times and I love seeing them. There is also an old church tucked away across the street from a little park by the river. On cooler days it is quite beautiful. One of my favorite things to do is sit on the bench and quietly look down the street. It is very peaceful and draws you to a different time in history until an occasional car drives by.
    It is truly awesome that these homes still exist in the community I live in. Another neighborhood in Rockledge that is rich in architecture is Levitt Park. It has more modern homes that range from around the 1950’s through current. What makes it so interesting is that you can clearly see which decade each piece of the neighborhood was developed. One street alone (Levitt PKWY) has the most evidence of each decade of architectural examples. Most styles from the 1970’s era are very interesting to the visual senses.
    Compared to Melbourne, Rockledge is a small community, but it is just as rich in historic value. It is also a community that cares about its appearance. There have been many completed projects to beautify the roads and other important structures to this town that really makes Rockledge inviting. I am very glad that I live in a town where I can just drive down the street and see history for myself.

  26. Noelle Garrison

    I love love love this post! I’ve always driven past these kinds of houses and thought they were so beautiful, but I never knew the names of the styles, where they came from, and the kinds of stories they might have. This post gave me so much of that information that I had been wanting! I love that you had a picture, the name, and then a paragraph about them. It was informational and organized, but fun at the same time.

    I think my favorite style is the Georgian Style. I absolutely love columns on houses and these types of houses have them all over! I also really love the balcony the goes the whole way across the top. I’ve always wanted a house with a balcony. To me they just seem so romantic and beautiful. Romeo and Juliet? Who knows, but I love them! My second favorite style is the Tudor style. I usually don’t like dark looking houses, but there is just something about this style that I’ve always loved. I just think the beams going across are gorgeous! I actually used to see a lot of these types of houses when I was living in New Jersey when we would drive through the larger, older neighborhoods. They are all so different, and the beams always go different ways on all of them. They were fun to look at and find the differences.

    I definitely want to drive down this road now. I’d probably end up being one of those people who stop and take pictures of everything!

  27. Tanya flynn

    I have often drove around looking at all the different architectural characteristics throughout the United State, I have lived in several cities throughout America including South Central California, the Sierra Nevada mountains of Lake Tahoe and Carson City, Houston, Texas; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Birmingham, Alabama; and Melbourne, Palm Bay Florida. I have traveled in between each, sometimes by plane but mostly by car, so I have seen many many types of architecture. From the California ranch style, to older Victorian and Gothic styles homes that are on and around Main Street California throughout the state, to the modern Frank Lloyd Wright’s modern design yet still sprawling like the huge ranch I was raised on, which by the way had the California ranch style house complete with ball room and ranch hand quarters to the back of the property. As I traveled East through the desert I seen many adobe structures and buildings, some with wood, some all adobe, but very unique to the harsh dry climate of the desert. Then as I got back East, I noticed the other styles like those featured in this article, for instance the Florida Vernacular Style, somewhat similar to some architectural details I’ve seen throughout the south, but what really stands out is the pastel colors and the metal-clad gable roof and the gingerbread trim. And the Tudor style house was really appealing to me because it made me feel like I was in Nottingham Forest and Robin Hood should be swinging by at any time. Even the metal-clad roofs and wrap around porches are still evident here. Of course, the Spanish style Mission is very common to me, for throughout California this style is still very popular and very prevalent in Los Angelas and other major cities and sprinkled throughout the vast deserts of the region. The Georgian Style definitely reminds me of the Thomas Jefferson era with the columns and front temples, even small ones still make a grand appearance especially with the metal roof that is common throughout Florida. Now the Queen Anne Style and the Gothic Revival Style remind me of back home except the style here encompasses towers, turrets, tall chimneys, projecting pavilions, porches, bays and encircling verandahs, which brings out the Floridian feel of the beach and hot sultry summer nights spent drinking lemonade and wishing a cool breeze would blow through. I love all the different feelings and emotions that each style of house can bring into my complete image and the emotional time stamp, so to say, that comes along with these visions of a simpler, yet harsher time.

  28. Doreen Muller

    When I first moved to Florida from Long Island, long before I had any inclination what so ever that I would one day have the desire to become an interior designer, my mother took the scenic route on Indian River Drive, heading toward Rockledge Drive for whatever destination we were going to at the time, as opposed to US1. It was during the holiday season, in late December at dusk. Many of the homes were adorned with Christmas lights, enhancing their unique architectural style. I too, was completely amazed by the architectural assortment of historical and modern styles along the beautiful Indian River!
    I am not a big fan of cookie cutter homes, so this was a real treat for me to see such a huge variety of various styles at one time and so close to home. You would think I would have figured out then that I had the desire to create a space that not only looks appealing, but one that people can connect with on an emotional level as well, considering the level of excitement I had on the exterior of these homes alone, but I did not.
    I loved that these homes define time. I wondered about the original owners and the history of the place, over all. If I had to choose my favorite style in this particular article, it would be the Vernacular style. It is a simple design that allows the breeze to flow throughout the space independently. My least favorite is the Tutor style. I do not like the half timbers dominating the façade, nor do I like the narrow windows.

  29. Shanna Lake

    I had honestly never thought that Rockledge had so many beautiful homes. Just driving by or through, you would never suspect it. I went down Rockledge Drive by accident one time and it caught my attention. I ended up driving up and back down the road again. The beauty is just magnificent. Being along the Indian river, would call for a great fishing spot along with having the great scenery. Taking this class, i realized how many different styles of architechture i really seen. All the oaks down the road really give it a great touch. The Georgian and Tudor styles interested me the most. The Tudor style has many patterns of the medieval and has great definition. What i like about the Georgian style is its signiture wrap around porches on all floors of the home. But to me the homes are to square in shape.

  30. Sarah Blackburn

    I enjoyed this article thoroughly, although it was just talking about Rockledge and Rockledge Drive, I feel like this would be a good read for someone that is inexperienced in architectural design, but still interested in Brevard County’s historic areas. There are roads all over Brevard County with houses styled in any of these six descriptions given in the article. I enjoy the look of many of these houses’ designs and while I am not one of the people mentioned that drives down the road with my caution flashers on, I probably on more than one occasion have driven down Riverside Drive between Indian Harbour Beach and Indialantic significantly slower than the speed limit to stare just for a little bit longer. (Even sometimes going out of my way to do so, I mean, I can’t be the only one.) Personally I have always been intrigued by the Tudor style houses and until recently, I often thought that these houses looked more German in design than something from the sixteenth century. I am surprised that the Spanish Mission style isn’t more popular, but I feel that the few house I saw in Winter Park outnumber the occasional one or two I see here. My mother has always loved Gregorian Style homes, the porches and columns are very much a part of her dream house. My personal favorites of these styles are the Florida Vernacular or Queen Anne. The gable roof of the Vernacular and the turret from the Queen Anne make it look homey and a good place to read a book.

  31. Veronica Tarducci

    Prior to taking the Historic Preservation class, I would always take the I-95 when traveling to Rockledge from Palm Bay, which is a must faster route than the alternative of taking US-1. I had never really made it a point to venture out much further than the shops of the downtown area’s either, but lately I have been choosing the scenic route. I was so enthralled with my surroundings while driving down Rockledge Drive that I had to keep reminding myself to pay attention to the beautiful twisting riverside road. It really is a special place within Brevard County where the aesthetically pleasing and historical homes can be appreciated alongside a breathtaking view of the Indian River. I enjoyed the drive up and down the road so much that I wanted to share it with my best friend who had never even heard it. Being from South Carolina, he was very impressed by the historic architecture and the Spanish moss draping from the oak trees which he said reminded him a lot of home. It was fun to try and identify the homes after having studied interior design for a year now. Although I was unable to identify all of the styles, it was interesting to be able to share some of the architectural characteristics that I have recently learned with him, especially considering he is a history buff that is usually educating me. I can’t wait to get a hold of the visual guide referred to in the blog, so I can take a nice, safe, and leisurely walk with it in hand as a study guide.

  32. Antwan Mingo

    Having grown up in Brevard County (Merritt Island to be precise), I have driven down Rockledge Drive many times over the years. It has always been interesting to see the unique homes along the drive, as well as the great views of the river. Now we take our children Christmas-light-looking down this drive every year!
    One thing I find interesting about the Florida vernacular style is that it is built-up on a platform, which is ideal for battling the flooding that often comes with classic Florida weather.
    The Tudor-style must be very elusive in our area, as I can’t recall seeing many homes in this style. I have driven down Rockledge drive many times in my 30+ years as a resident of Brevard County, and I can’t say I even remember seeing the house in the photo here. It is an interesting look for our area, to say the least.
    Except for the roofline, it is hard for me to distinguish the Georgian style from the Greek Revival style in the photo here. This house has tall first floor windows, columns, side lights flanking the door – all elements of Greek Revival. Yet it also has pedimented dormers, columns, side lights (see what I mean) – all elements of Georgian style!
    It was fun to too see the different styles represented on this scenic drive! I have seen most of these houses before, but not in this light.

  33. Justin Champion

    Rockledge is the oldest city in Brevard county, founded in 1887. Rockledge was built on a rock ledge, and the name itself was two words (Rock Ledge) until recently. Rockledge Drive and the surrounding areas are a huge historic asset to the surrounding cities and county. Barton Avenue is also an extremely historical street in the Rockledge area, the original strip in fact. The housed the original jail, school house, and mainly boarding houses. Old St. Mary’s is at the top of the hill. There was also, at one point, a wharf out in the middle of the water, where Barton meets Rockledge Dr. This was an area used to create a spectacle from offshore and onshore. This wharf declared the presence of people, a town, and resources. Local fisherman and agriculturalists were present to aid people in the use and finding of natural resources used to allow residence and travelers alike to thrive.

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