Irwin Home

Must-See Downtown Art & Architecture

Irwin Home

Columbus, Indiana 47201, United States

Created By: Columbus Area Visitors Center


Built in 1864 by Joseph I Irwin, Columbus banker and businessman (and J Irwin Miller's grandfather), this Italianate design was remodeled in 1880.

The home is now a bed and breakfast.

To accommodate four generations of the Irwin family, the home has been enlarged and redesigned over the years. The current mansion was completed by Henry Phillips, a Massachusetts architect, who was hired by William G Irwin in 1910. The old brick exterior was covered by tapestry brick with stone trim, and several new chimneys, which are now a prominent feature of the house, were added.

The intricate detail of the extensive fine woodwork and moldings throughout the house are reminiscent of a European estate

The highlight of this two-acre property is the garden, a beautiful maze based on a famous garden in Pompeii. The gardens are open for public viewing Tuesday and Saturday afternoons, generally from April through October.

Several fountains and a long pool are the focal point of a lowered, sunken garden. There is a statue under the center arch of the garden house designed from a lakeside structure at the Villa of Hadrian at Tivoli in Italy. Pompeian murals accent the garden house. A tall brick wall is rounded in imitation of 16th-century gardens at Mantua in Italy. Wisteria vines on the terrace’s pergolas were planted in 1911, and continue to bloom in the spring.

This point of interest is part of the tour: Must-See Downtown Art & Architecture


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