Featured in the Baltimore Sun (Jan. 2014)

198 prince george baltimore sun article
Dream home: 
Couple’s home offers history, spirit to rival Colonial-era neighbors. January 10, 2014 By Marie Marciano Gullard, For The Baltimore Sun.

“We received the 2009 Annapolis Historic Preservation Award for the restoration of the front exterior elevation of ourhome…” Living in the shadow of the Naval Academy chapel, Ellis Richman and his wife, Dr. Ingrid Kohlstadt, are exactly where they want to be – nestled in the heart of historic Annapolis. Theirs is no ordinary house among a bevy of notable properties.

Woven into the rich tapestry of Colonial architecture that marks Maryland’s capital  city landscape are the grande dames of Queen Anne-style homes erected in the Victorian era.

The couple owns one of a twin pair of homes built in the early 1890s by lumber and hardware  merchant Joseph S.M. Basil. And since their home stayed in the Basil family for over 85 years, the two were pleased to find it in such good condition — so much so that an ambitious plan on their part to remove the façade’s exterior lead paint came with more than the satisfaction of a job well done.

“We received the 2009 Annapolis Historic Preservation Award for the restoration of the front exterior elevation of ourhome ,” noted Richman, a third- generation Annapolitan. “We also applied for a historic home marker and the Historic Annapolis Foundation decided, based on many factors, that our home represents this Victorian slice of historic homes.”

Lisa Craig, chief of historic preservation for the city of Annapolis, points  out the home’s superb exterior as a “fine example of the Queen Anne style.”

“Features that distinguish this property … include the front double window bays and projecting roof gable, the front dormer windows, the boxed cornice with modillions and dentils and the wood-paneled front entrance door  with side lights, transom and a nicely detailed door cornice,” she said.

If fine and accurate detail constitutes the spirit of the home, then the heart of it is the interior.

While less than 20 feet wide, once past the vestibule, the rooms travel deep into the property line, about 85 feet, including a contemporary addition at the rear of the home that the couple uses as a playroom for their two children, Raeha, 7, and Emmanuel, 4. Its five bedrooms on the second and third levels, along with three full bathrooms, accommodate friends and family  who visit.

The home’s furnishings are at once traditional , eclectic and whimsical. The living room, with its bull’s-eye and dentil molding, has been painted a vibrant cadet blue, a rich backdrop for an antique American chestnut cupboard and a pair of intricately carved armoires.

Kohlstadt, who has practiced medicine on every continent, including Antarctica, has filled the home with memorabilia.

“The 70-pound petrified log in my office  keeps its cool, no matter what,” she said. “So did Ellis when I asked that we bring it with us from Indonesia.”

She has also filled her home with brightly colored pieces of needlework, tapestries and gorgeous hand-knotted textiles that she drapes across furniture and hangs on the walls of her three-story, winding oak staircase.

“I find joy in restoring these fabrics and marvel at the hundreds of hours of handwork behind each beauty,” she said.

For Kohlstadt, a physician nutrition specialist and faculty associate at the Johns Hopkins University, and Richman, a development director for NutriBee, a national nutrition program founded by his wife, their home is first and foremost about love and the pride inherent in a respect for tradition.

Historic Marker Award: Victorian Period (1837-1901)

What do the Markers Mean?

The town of Annapolis, Maryland is filled with beautiful historic buildings, lovingly restored and maintained by both private citizens and the Historic Annapolis Foundation. The historic markers used by Historic Annapolis Foundation, HAF, were designed to identify noteworthy buildings in Annapolis to provide information on the architectural period of that particular building, and to be decorative. They help make spotting and identifying the historic Annapolis buildings much easier for visitors interested in our rich history. In fact, the town has more surviving colonial buildings than any other location in the country. For the marker’s design, HAF chose The Liberty Tree, a tulip poplar which, until recently due to age and heavy damage from Hurricane Floyd, stood proudly on St. John’s College campus and was believed to be nearly 400 years old. Pre-Revolutionary War meetings held under the tree by the Sons of Liberty were the basis for its name and, even in its absence, the site continues to be a popular attraction. Today, Annapolitans and visitors alike are turning their attention to the descendant of The Liberty Tree, nicknamed Son of Liberty, and the cultivation of a second descendant, from Newton’s famous apple tree!

Decoding the Markers.


The markers are color-coded as follows:
Dark Green markers
17th century (1684-1700)
Bronze markers
18th-century buildings of national importance
Brick Red markers
designate 18th century or Georgian Federal
Blue markers
Federal (1784-1840)
Light Green markers
Greek Revival (1820-1860)
Purple markers
Victorian Period (1837-1901)
Grey markers
19th/20th-century vernacular (1837-1930)
Yellow markers
20th-century distinctive (1901- Present)

There are building of many different periods and styles lining our streets. Historic Annapolis Foundation retains ownership of the markers and reserves the right to remove a marker if a property’s architectural integrity is diminished by a proposed alteration. The Historic Annapolis Foundation may ask a property owner to complete restoration or maintenance work before awarding a marker. The markers are awarded only to buildings that are both worthy of recognition and maintained in a quality appropriate to the architectural significance of the building. Therefore, anytime you see one, you can rest assured that the owners of that building are taking very good care of it, and that it will be available for viewing by other Annapolis visitors — perhaps another 300 years from now! Enjoy our beautiful city.

Panoramic Kitchen View

The kitchen at 198 Prince George Street is one of the main reasons we purchased the home. For someone who loves to cook, this is a truly functional kitchen. Beautiful granite countertops accent the open floor plan that is adacent to the home’s family room. The family room looks out to the brick paver courtyard, so when you’re cooking you can see all the way outside from one end to the other.  A big plus: Plenty of room for your eat-in kitchen table too, plus the breakfast bar. It’s bright and cheery, with additional sunlight from the overhead skylight.

Kitchen Panoramic 198 Prince George 1