As if there weren’t enough things around here that need attention, I unexpectedly found myself involved in a new project:  the renovation of someone else’s house.  It’s an early twentieth-century house which has been empty for a long time.  It will be a sensitive renovation but not a purist restoration.  Jim of Bunkhouse fame is also working on it – as will be many others.  We know up front that it will take at least a year to turn this place around, but it will probably go well past that amount of time.  It’s not always easy to get help when you need it in a rural area; there is often more demand than there are available and qualified tradespeople.  I guess my greenhouse project will have to wait a bit… it has come to a screeching halt but I will continue to work on it as time and weather permit!

Let’s take a quick look at the new project:

The front and side. Mid-century iron porch supports replaced traditional Tuscan columns while galvanized steel siding covers the original narrow clapboards. The wood shingled roof is at the end of its lifespan. Never struck by lightning, the original lightning rods retain their glass balls.


Paint has worn from the steel siding. Built without indoor plumbing, the vent stack was placed outside when plumbing was added. The side porch was clearly used as the primary entry.


The porch has seen better days. Yes, we have to get rid of all of this stuff.


A new porch floor will be one of many projects.


Most of the “issues” this house has are merely cosmetic. Because the steel siding is in good shape overall, it will be repaired and painted.


Breakfast room. The updates seemed to stop in the 70’s or early 80’s.


The dining room features a 1960’s light trough just below the ceiling.


A pull-down fixture (sans shade) from the 60’s is found in the living room.


The front door.


The house had a dual lighting system when built, each room had both electric and acetylene gas light fixtures!


An upstairs bedroom with 60’s wall paneling and 70’s shag carpet.


Yes, we have to clean the basement, too. Some day this space will be bright, cheery and clean!


An interesting attic space. The house will be entirely re-wired during the renovation.


A frayed and broken window sash cord had been repurposed as a pin holder!


The screened portion of the wrap-around porch has always had square columns while the open front portion originally had round Tuscan columns. We will likely replace the iron supports with modern versions of the originals, but made of fiberglass.


A better view of one of the lightning rods. They will be coming down for a new roof installation, but will be saved.


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