Montpelier Restoration Update – 3/12/2008


001 before plastering plastering 001 001 plastered 2

The walls in M-001 (Dolley’s Kitchen) have received their one and only coat of plaster. The single layer of plaster is based on surviving examples of Madison-era plaster and it will produce a rough, uneven texture in keeping with the space’s use as a kitchen. The walls in the kitchen will also be whitewashed, which is the same finish that was found on plaster fragments recovered from the space.

The remaining walls in M-118 have been white coated (except for a small section in the southwest corner) and the ceilings in M-106 (North Passage) and the South Wing Closets have been whitewashed.

Currently the masons are preparing M-111 (Back Chamber) and M-108 (Drawing Room) for plastering.



talking about door repairs finger joint end door

Bill Bichell and Keith Forry are repairing the original Madison-period doors. These doors, which date from all three Madison construction periods, were found re-used in the duPont Mansion. Many of the doors had been cut down to fit new or out-of-plumb doorways and finger joints are being used return the doors to their original sizes. Finger joints, which form a serrated edge down the entire length of a board, were specified because they provide more surface area for gluing then a common butt joint.

Keith Repairing mortises

Keith Forry also continues to patch duPont-era mortise lock pockets. Because the doors are made from heart pine, Keith is using heart pine for the patches.



Dino C. has finished priming M-104 (Mr. Madison’s Room) and is painting the summer beam in M-001 (Dolley’s Kitchen).

paitning chair rail 105

Jack Fisher is applying the hand-ground, linseed-oil based paint to the trim in M-105 (Dining Room) and M-104 (Mr. Madison’s Room).


M-109 (South Passage)

Gene Lyman has started to apply the cap on the installed portions of the wainscot. As with the paneling, a majority of the cap survives from circa 1765.


M-110 (South Stair)

mac laying out skirt board 110 Mac installing skirt board

Mac Ward is installing the skirt boards and a corner board along the girder (one of the principal framing members used in a timber-frame floor system) that projects into the stairwell. A small portion of this c. 1765 ovolo embellished corner board had been re-used by the duPonts and was recovered during the restoration.


M-003 (North Cellar)

repairing 105 trimmer arch

Mason Wayne Mays and carpenters Thomas Tyler and Chris Edwards are repairing the brick trimmer arch that supports the outer hearth in M-105 (Dining Room).


M-008 (South Cellar Passage)

south cellar stair stringers winder supports 008

Olivier Dupont-Huin is installing the stringers and winder supports for the stair. His next step will be to install the treads and risers.



ed preparing colonnade decking

Ed Gomez is preparing the top layer of decking for installation and Nick Oster is installing the flashing that will protect the door from water damage.



chimney cap bases

Two more chimney caps were installed.

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