Earle-Harrison House was built with functioning shutters, enhanced photographs taken of the home 1859-1872 show closed shutters on each of the 21 windows. Functioning shutters were utilitarian – they provided an extra layer of weather protection to single pane windows on stormy, hot or cold days. Closed shutters also kept animals out of the home. The shutters could be latched closed, or held open with hardware called shutter dogs, in Earle-Harrison House’s case the shutter dog design was likely a weighted “propeller” design attached at the shutter’s base.
Today functioning shutters once again grace Earle-Harrison House. With research assistance from the Texas Historical Commission period-appropriate cedar shutters and hardware was purchased from Timberlane Shutters, PA, a company that has supplied replacement shutters for many historical buildings throughout the U.S. Our tours will now include an explanation and demonstration of what was once an essential necessity for this Greek Revival structure and other homes built on the frontier of Texas. One very unexpected benefit was the immediate HVAC savings- EHH’s interior temperature dropped 5 degrees within four hours of their installation because the 10 1/2″ single-pane windows now have an extra layer of “shutter insulation”.