The Secret Rooms Project at The House of the Seven Gables is moving along well thanks to our dedicated team of staff and contractors. Structures North has been making a weekly check-in with American Steeple and Tower to ensure that preparation for the steel beam is going well. During one of the inspections, a portion of the tenon from the summer beam in the dining room chamber separated from the member. It’s times like these where working with a dedicated preservation staff comes in handy and a solution was quickly established!
To prepare for the removal of the dividing wall in the Accounting Room, most of the plumbing was removed. The tub will be next to be removed and will post the biggest challenge in terms of logistics as it will need to be carried down steep and narrow stairs. Flooring was also removed from the space and will need to be replaced in-kind. Kevin White, the director of maintenance and preservation, has a stock of similar flooring that he salvaged from another home in Salem that will work as replacement flooring in this section of the Accounting Room restoration.
Paint analysis continues in both the Accounting Room and Dining Room Chamber with Christine Thompson and Bill Finch. Some additional sampling will be completed in the Dining Room before the plaster goes into place so that any seventeenth century materials can be documented as well. Plaster work in the dining room is expected to begin in early April.
To better serve visitors in the future, Gables staff is also exploring the option of architectural viewports in the Dining Room and Dining Room Chamber to show not only the historic materials, but also the modern construction and structural restoration techniques. The team has been actively discussing locations and viewports will be coming to a tour near you!Tags: dining room chamber, project, secret room, secret rooms, secret rooms project
This post was written by Ryan Conary