EARLY AMERICAN FIREPLACE
The early American, “colonial”, fireplace was merely a country like copy of English
fireplaces of the same period, the ability to construct them brought with the settlers.
The application of the word “colonial” to all pre Revolutionary architecture and decoration created a vague impression that there was, at that time, an early American style of architecture, which was not so. Colonial architecture is simply a modest copy of the English “Georgian” style.
If a fireplace mantel piece could not be imported from England because of cost, it was reproduced by hand from native wood.
Wooden mantels were not unknown in England, where the use of wood led to a practice of
“facing” the fireplace with “Dutch” tiles.
More or less because of the cheapness, wood was uses as mantles in both America and
England, but was 'set back' from the opening because it was unsafe to put inflammable
material near the fire.
Abstract: The Washington , D. C. , Hatchet Sunday Newspaper, April 29, 1900. By Harrison, 2017.