The historic buildings in Bagdad embody the village's history and cultural heritage, reflecting various periods of growth, and telling an important story about how the town was developed. The village boasts a wide variety of architectural styles ranging from 1840s Greek Revival to 1920s bungalows. Most of the homes were built by the mill owners, and each change in mill ownership brought about a surge in construction in the architectural style that was most in favor at the time. During the E. E. Simpson period (1855-1866), the Greek Revival style was popular. Few buildings from this period remain since most of the village was destroyed
during the Civil War. From 1866-1903, wood-frame Creole and Gulf Coast Cottages were dominant. The Chicago-based owners during the Stearns & Culver era (1903-1923) followed a few basic house plans, such as the Four-Square, Saltbox, and a two-story duplex known as the Double House. During the Bagdad Land & Lumber Company period (1922-1939), the expansion of the mill led to the construction of shotgun houses for the growing number of workers and bungalows for the
superintendents, many of whom lived along Main Street.
The Thompson House
Among the oldest houses in Bagdad is the Thompson House, located at 4620 Forsyth Street. Built in the late 1850s by Benjamin W. Thompson, the house is a fine example of the Greek Revival style. Of particular note are the door facings on the interior of the house, which are in the Egyptian Revival Temple of Luxor design. In October 1864 Union troops
under the command of Colonel Andrew Spurling camped in the Thompson House and left graffiti, which can still be seen today, on the walls of the parlor and upstairs hall.
Left, bottom: Thompson House, 1850s
Center: Saltbox style
Right, top: First Methodist Church, Gothic Revival Style
Right, middle: Double house in Bagdad
Right, bottom: Duplex in Bagdad