Old House Restoration: Passion Gone Wild

By: Conrad Neuf , Contributing Writer
In: Old Houses, Old House Musings, In The News, Old House History

I spend a lot of time online doing research for articles I’m in the process of writing and seem to constantly get sidetracked by interesting restoration blogs. I’ll start with the home page to get an idea of the style and age of the old house being restored, then jump to the pages describing the various rooms the owners have completed, and before I know it an hour or more has gone by.

260 Year Old Marblehead, MA Home--photo from katyelliot.com

260 Year Old Marblehead, MA Home--photo from katyelliot.com

Part of the problem is that my background is in construction and architecture and I find reading about the history of the homes and the changes that have taken place in them over the years fascinating. I also enjoy reading about the various restoration projects in the homes as they bring back memories of old houses I’ve worked on in the past and give me ideas for future endeavors. However, I think the primary reason I get hooked is that in so many cases the passion for what the blogger is doing and writing about shows through and I think that is a rare thing. I have been around so many people who seem to just go through the motions that I am immediately captivated by someone who has a passion for what they’re involved in.

Old House Restoration in Massachusetts

A good example of what I mean is the restoration blog about a 260 year old house in Marblehead, Massachusetts. A young couple with a love of old houses, but absolutely no experience restoring them, purchased the home in 2008 and have been documenting their restoration journey. The blog is almost addictive as it traces the process they go through brainstorming ideas for each room and the pictures that accompany each post make you feel like you’re a part of every step.


Des Moines Restoration

Words sometimes can’t convey the amount of sweat and labor that can go into an old house restoration project, but the pictures on a blog about a 1918 bungalow in Des Moines get the point across. The young couple haven’t been in the home very long, but are already well on their way to having a beautiful old house. The pictures do a good job of conveying the sense of satisfaction and enjoyment that come from working on a house and turning it into your home.

Gamble House in Cincinnati--photo from westwoodhistorical.com

Gamble House in Cincinnati--photo from westwoodhistorical.com

Gamble House Update


There’s a bit of news about the Gamble House in Cincinnati I have written about a number of times in the past. The old house that was once owned by James Gamble of Proctor and Gamble fame has been the center of a battle between Cincinnati’s preservationists and the foundation that owns it and wants to tear it down. There is now a possibility the City will pay the foundation $300,000 and take the home by eminent domain so it remains intact.