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Circa 1790 (1811) Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Questions and answers relating to houses built in the 1800s and before.

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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby eperot on Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:18 am

Wow, what extensive and quality work! I bet the neighbors were thrilled to see someone like you buy that house and take such good care of it.

I will be replacing a rotted sill on one gable wall this spring/summer with new white oak from my friend's property, sawn up on his mill. The prospect scares me for sure....I've seen different ways to jack the house but haven't decided what is best yet. How'd you jack yours?

Eric
Jacob Beaty House - c.1874
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby cfisher057 on Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:44 am

I am terribly jealous Greg, you have done a fantastic job on your house. Your commitment to keeping it original is very impressive. Want to come work on my house? It's just across the river! :lol:

Seriously, though, great stuff.

--Chris
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby catya on Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:21 am

Is it cool, you ask? Heck yes! Beautiful job, we don't have many that old around here so it was interesting to see it for that reason too. Looks like the cats approve!
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby jharkin on Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:53 am

Greg-

I can only say wow.

WOW.

Fantastic job, thanks so much for sharing and welcome from another old Cape 'er.

-Jeremy
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby Eden on Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:18 pm

Great restoration! We have 3 or 4 of this vintage on here, don't we?

I checked this one out before I bought my 1847 Farm: It is in great shape. I didn't like that 12 acres where behind the house across a stream, so I moved on, it was tempting though, hope it still opens:

http://www.kodakgallery.com/gallery/sha ... 1937932517
Edee
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1912 Gordon-Van Tine House Plan #122
"Be The Change You Want to see in the World," Ghandi
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby gregV on Wed Feb 16, 2011 3:23 pm

Thanks for the kind word everyone. Guess that's why we come here, ..to share with those that "get it" ;-)

Eric, jacking the weight off the sills is really not that hard. The worst part is trying to keep the walls from spreading and cracking up your interior walls. Looks like you have a full two story house, so I would place the jacking (load) points right up t your girts. This will help keep your walls from spreading outward.

We can discuss more if you like. Just ask away. :)

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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby eperot on Wed Feb 16, 2011 5:57 pm

Greg, we don't have "girts" so to speak...our house is balloon framed, but we do obviously have the more modern equivalent. This site says the same as you.. http://gyrestorations.com/sill-replacement.shtml
with either balloon or timber framing, the best place to jack from is the second floor. It takes the load off the first floor walls which (as ours has bowed out where the rot is) can then be pushed back into place. I'd be happy to do this job myself, but am a little scared for a couple reasons...First, I don't know if i need any kind of permit for this type of work, and second, this is the wall where our gas line enters into the basement. The line goes through the stone foundation, which shouldn't be affected, but still...a little freaky.
I do have access to a few 20ton bottle jacks, however. C'mon...talk me into it... :wink:
Eric
Jacob Beaty House - c.1874
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby gregV on Thu Feb 17, 2011 9:55 pm

OK, here are some pictures I collected of the chimney work. Not many.

All was original to the top of the ridge pole. The original bricks were used to rebuild this very top section, but being that modern cement was used the bricks were hard to save. So I found the exact bricks from the guy who rebuilt it for me. As you can see he is quite the artist when it comes to reproducing what it originally looked like. All freehand, hardly a string or a level.

Tearing down the top of the stack.

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This is the stack up to the roof line.
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All original clay and brick from there down. Divided flues .... West Parlor. East Parlor and second floor combined. The large opening is the kitchen (keeping room) and beehive.
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The new stack! I could not wait to get a fire going, and then run outside and watch the smoke rise. I prize this stack!. :)
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This is a new stack I personally built for the furnace on my "L". New brick. Need to scrub it down as the lime has leeched a bit.
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby gregV on Thu Feb 17, 2011 10:33 pm

Here are a few shots of the original 1790 kitchen, also known as the "keeping Room". Again, very few shots and being they are scans, they are not so clear.

When I moved in this keeping room was all sheet rock and vertical knotty pine (modern) wainscot. All the doors were plywood and all the wood trim was this awful same pine. The day I bought this house I started in this room. Just could not wait to see what was behind these walls that were put up in the late 30s. As you can see all the fireboxes were painted BLACK. Ugg!

Anyway, this is what was found.

The walls before
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What was behind that wall. Original plaster and hand split accordion lath over wide pine wainscot painted red. The original colors to this room were red wood, red plaster with black stenciling . Beaded pegboard (nail board) all the way around.
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The kitchen harth. All the masonry was painted black, so this took quite a while to clean up.
Before
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The whole wall after
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This is looking inside the chimney cavity. This is how I discovered that there were two wall cupboards over the East Parlor fireplace, as they had been completely covered up.. You can see the back of the far cupboard and the opening in the lath where the near one had been completely removed. You can also just see a black book on the bottom right of the picture. This was the checkbook of the man who owned the house when it was modernized in the 1930s. We found it NAILED to that beam. Also found a circa 1810 walking stick back there with a silver and ivory tip. Several clay marbles and hand made dice also.
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Just a pic of how it looks now, a few years later. The plaster had to come down and all the original woodwork was so full of nail holes that I just made my own. I numbered and stored all original in the attic for the next person. The was no mantel work left over the hearth so I did what I thought might be there following shadow lines.
We have cooked for 20 on that heath! :)
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The beams were never meant to be exposed in this house and all ceilings were plastered. I'm still debating about leaving this room open with the beams and second floor floorboards exposed.
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Re: Circa 1790 Cape. (Lots of pictures)

Postby cfisher057 on Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:37 am

I just need to say again: nice work Greg.

My wife and I have faced similar problems in our cape. The beams in the ceiling were never meant to be exposed... But we like the look.

We have that same pine paneling all over our house. Our kitchen-from-hell also has it along with 6ft 5in ceilings, scalloped moulding and slew of other quirks. Your house gives me hope.

--Chris
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