Colonial Style DOORS & Entryways

The entrance to your home makes the first impression people feel when they arrive, and entryways have carried their own unique character throughout Colonial times to the present day. From the earliest form, being little more than a just a batten door, to later versions which included fanlight windows and porticos, the entryway always received special attention from builders. Some of the widest variety of detail and form in Colonial architecture manifested itself in the entryway. Given the many different designs from various locations and periods, it is important to ensure that your entryway fits your house. We specialize in Connecticut Valley entryways, but we have built scores of others that are in place all across the country. Here is a sampling of a few. 

By the early 18th Century entryways were still little more than a simple door surround with a splayed top and a back band molding. These types of early entryways usually ha d glass transom lights incorporated into the door frame above the door. As was often the case back in the early 18 th Century, we manufacture our simple entryways using hand-blown bulls-eye glass. As the desire for aesthetic overtook the purely utilitarian style that preceded it, pediments or an architrave , frieze , and cornice began top the doorways. 

In the 19th Century, porticos supported by columns became a popular design. Usually Classical at their core detail and proportion, these entryways are indicative of the late Georgian period of Colonial architecture. Many of the same traits as were seen in the Roman Doric order can be seen in this later Colonial style entryway.

We build all of our doors using true mortice and tenon construction . When appropriate, the door is hand-planed and fastened with wooden pegs. Our interior doors are built out of either poplar or clear Eastern white pine, while our exterior doors are typically built out of Spanish Cedar or preserved Eastern white pine. However, we can use any species of wood you desire. We will work with you or your architect to determine what style of door is right for your house. An overview of various types of interior and exterior doors is below, but there are just too many variations to be able to describe them all. When it comes to doors, there is nothing we cannot make. 

Maurer and Shepherd manufactures several different types of interior doors. The most common interior door found in Georgian architecture is 15 / 16 ” thick with raised panels  on one side, recessed panels on the other, and a hand-planed finish . These doors were commonly made with a six panel, eight panel or four panel design. Less common, though still sometimes used, was a two panel design. Another popular design of interior door featured raised panels on both sides. These doors were thicker, and we generally make them 1 1 / 4 ” thick. With either thickness raised panel door there are different variations. Tombstone panels can take the place of square edge. We can also make round-top doors with period jambs to match. All of our raised panel doors are built using true mortice and through-tenon construction, and fixed with square wooden pegs. A more simple type of interior door was a batten door. As is the case with our raised panel doors, all of our batten doors are hand-planed. These doors are constructed using furniture grade wide pine. We also make a third type of less common interior door, a tavern door with lights.  

At Maurer and Shepherd we manufacture a wide variety of exterior doors. Generally, our exterior doors are 1 3 / 4 ” thick, but we have made doors up to 3” thick when necessary. Whether you are looking for a double panel door with cross-bucks or a double batten door clinch nailed with wrought iron T-head nails, we take care in making sure the proportion of the door is correct and the craftsmanship is excellent. Other styles of exterior doors we manufacture include French panel doors with custom applied moldings, batten back raised panel doors clinch nailed with rose head nails, and French doors. As is the case with all our products, great care is taken in the design. For example, unlike many modern French doors, ours feature slimmer side styles, and deep muntin profiles. Our French doors can be raised panel door, and we can match an existing muntin profile on a French door. If you would like a lighted door, we will use reclaimed antique cylinder glass, or if tempered glass is called for we can use Victorian Antique tempered glass. This type of glass is also available in thermal pane. Also available for lighted doors is hand-blown bulls-eye glass.