Preservation Trust of Vermont 
In This Issue
Preservation Grants Awarded
News from the Preservation Trust
Vermont News
National News
Upcoming Grants
For Homeowners
New Publications
In the Media
PTV Resources
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Welcome to our new newsletter format!  We hope you take a moment to read about what the preservation community has been up to for the last several months.  As always, if you have any stories you'd like to contribute or any feedback you'd like to share, please contact us at
Thank you!
Paul Bruhn, Executive Director 
Preservation Grants Awarded  
Preservation Grants Awarded
Since 1994 the Freeman Foundation and the Preservation Trust of Vermont have had a partnership to support preservation projects. Over $10 million in grants have been awarded to help more than 390 projects in communities throughout the state. These grants have played a key role in over $119 million in total rehabilitation work. The last two rounds of grants include:  

Pittsfield Congreational Church, Pittsfield, VTPittsford Congregational Church: $30,000.  Built in 1837 on the north end of the Green and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Congregational Church is undergoing an effort to make the building ADA compliant, rebuild the front steps, rewire the building, conserve windows and tower tracery, repair its chimneys, foundation, and roof.  The building is used by a number of community groups including the Food Shelf, VT Association of the Blind, the local Grange, Brownies, and others.  
Samuel Read Hall House, Brownington, VTSamuel Read Hall House, Brownington: $35,000. Built in 1831 in the Federal Style by Mr. Hall, a pioneer in the field of education (service learning), this house is now an integral part of the Old Stone House Museum and the larger Brownington Historic District, which is listed National Register of Historic Places.  The museum is owned and operated by the Orleans County Historical Society, which owns 7 buildings on 55 acres in a spectacular setting.  For many years the Samuel Read Hall House was used as a private summer residence and maintained in good condition. The Hall House will serve as an educational center offering heritage workshops and accommodating additional visitors.  Upcoming work includes installing a new roof, doing foundation repair, and installing new wiring and plumbing along with structural work.  

Armory Square, Armory, VTArmory Square, Windsor: $35,000.  Armory Square was the latest title and saddest incarnation of one of the most important historic examples of "workforce" housing built in Vermont.  Built in 1920-22 for the National Acme Company (NAMCO) and known as the NAMCO Block, this complex is a four story brick apartment block composed of nine attached apartment buildings originally containing 72 apartments.  The NAMCO Block has basic Colonial Revival features and is said to be the largest apartment block in the State of Vermont.  After a 1989 conversion by developers from Boston and Holyoke it unfortunately became housing of last resort for the entire region, and was utilized exclusively for very low-income families.  The combination of poor management and 100% very low income occupancy turned this once important housing resource into a blighted, dangerous area for its residents and the downtown neighbors of this project.  Housing Vermont purchased the property in September of 2007, and their redevelopment plan includes a complete renovation of the property and the re-establishment of floor plans that provide residents with a reasonable amount of living space.  The result will be housing for families with a mix of income levels.  This grant will be used for the restoration of the front fašade with its characteristic entryways. 
Braintree School, Pawlet, VTPawlet Historical Society: $20.000.  The Pawlet Historical Society owns and operates two historic brick schoolhouses -- the North Pawlet School and Braintree School -- and has been working on repairs to them over the past nine years.  The brick Greek Revival North Pawlet School was built in 1847 and operated as a one-room grade school for 104 years, closing in 1951.  The building is now used to house the society's collection and archives and for administrative purposes. The Braintree School, another brick Greek Revival Structure built in 1852, operated as a one-room grade school for 82 years, closing in 1934.  Later modifications North Pawlet Schoolhouse, Pawlet, VTfor larger window openings were made to coincide with State regulations for healthy schools.  In 1975 a group of volunteers began to restore the building and open it to the public.  Since 1976 teachers from area schools have brought their classes to the school three or four times a year to participate in re-enactment of a typical mid-nineteenth century school day.  Recently, the historical society sponsored and produced a community event called "Pawlet Olden Days" with the Braintree School and its grounds at the center of much of the day's activities.  Classes in the school and tours of the school take place throughout the day; approximately 300 people attend the event each year.  This grant will help them install curtain drains at both buildings, point and repair the foundations and fašades, repair the slate roofs replacing ridge caps and copper valleys, repair plaster and floor framing, and install custom wooden storm windows.  
Adamant Co-op, Adamant, VTAdamant Cooperative and Community Club: $50,000.  The volunteer-managed village store and the Community Club are the essence of the village of Adamant.  The community first developed when granite quarries opened in 1880 bringing workers from Scotland and Canada.  Founded in 1935, the village store is the state's oldest cooperative.  The building houses an art center, post office, store, a space for kids, and is the daily community gathering place.  In 1962 the Town turned the former school over to the Adamant Community Club, Adamant, VTAdamant Community Club, and it is now used as a center for adult and children's classes, community meetings, and social events including an outdoor theater. The grant will help with work on both buildings including woodwork and window repair, electrical and plumbing upgrades, chimney re-pointing, painting, roof work, and moisture control.  
New Hope Church, Waits River VTNew Hope Church, Waits River: $25,000.  Built in 1854, this Greek Revival style church anchors the village of Waits River and has become one of the most photographed churches in Vermont.  Pictures of this building nestled among barns and houses with a narrow road leading up to its front steps have adorned the cover of Vermont Life, hundreds of calendars, recent book covers by Howard Frank Mosher, and been in television ads depicting rural Vermont.  This grant will allow them to complete steeple repairs, sill and exterior woodwork repairs, and paint the roof and exterior of the building.

Stannard Historical Society (former Methodist Church), StannardStannard Historical Society: $7,000.  Organized in 1983 to acquire and save a redundant Methodist Church and convert it to a community center, the Stannard Historical Society is facing a structural problem and needs to to jack-up the chimney, repair its footing, cap the chimney, repair the ridge cap and repair interior plaster damaged by the chimney.  This grant will allow them to complete the repairs.

Old North Church, North Danville, VTOld North Church, North Danville: $30,000.
Constructed in 1832 as the Union Meeting House, the Old North Church is remarkably intact with no central heat and lit by a chandelier that holds 14 kerosene lamps.  The building is used for candlelit services in the summer, weddings, funerals, and the Danville High School Baccalaureate.  In 2009, the historical society that maintains the building will host the Memorial Service for the National Judges conference to be held in St. Johnsbury.  This grant, along with additional funds raised, will enable the community to conserve all windows, replace deteriorated clapboards on the south facade, reinstate three windows covered over on the rear fašade, paint the exterior, and begin interior plaster and finishes repair.  
St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church, Newport, VTSt Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church, Newport: $40,000.  Built in 1903-04 and dedicated in 1909, this monumental Romanesque stone church was constructed on the highest point in Newport looking out on Lake Memphremagog.  This grant will help the congregation compete exterior work on major capital improvements, including repairing the front steps and railing, rebuilding a side entrance, and re-roofing the rear chapel section of the church.  Once completed, the congregation will continue to fundraise for interior plaster repairs and restoration of exquisite trompe-l'oeil painting.  
Catamount Arts, St. JohnsburyCatamount Arts, St. Johnsbury: $50,000.  When it opened in 1912, the Masonic Temple of St. Johnsbury was the largest and grandest Masonic building in Vermont with more than 700 members.  Today, it is remarkably intact, a highly visible landmark on Eastern Avenue in the St. Johnsbury Historic District.  In 2006, in an extraordinarily generous gesture that was intended to benefit the entire community, the Masons gave their building to Catamount Arts in return for a no-cost lease in perpetuity of the top floor.  Construction is underway to adapt the lower two floors into a Community Arts Center with two film theaters, two classrooms, performance space, and galleries.  The St. Johnsbury Academy building trade students restored all of the interior woodwork, milling new trim to match the original as needed.  In addition, their master teacher is serving as the Project Manager.  This grant will help support the project.
Orleans County Fairgrounds, Barton, VTOrleans County Fairgrounds, Barton: $60,000.  The existing grandstand and racetrack were built when the Fair began in 1867.  This grant will help with repairs to the grandstand and structural repairs to the two most significant barns on the property.   

News from the Preservation Trust 

Preservation Retreat, Grand Isle Lake House, Grand Isle, VT
Upcoming PTV Retreats at the Grand Isle Lake House
Every summer, the Preservation Trust of Vermont hosts a series of 2-day retreats at the Grand Isle Lake House.  Lake House Retreats are for groups who are undertaking historic preservation or community development projects.  The Lake House is the perfect venue for sharing ideas and challenges, funding opportunities, and technical assistance resources.  There are two retreats left this year:
  • September 9-10  Preservation Projects with a special focus on fundraising
  • October 7-8  Community Development and Historic Preservation
  • October 1-2 Community Supported Enterprises Retreat

Click here for more information on our Retreat Program

The Bobcat Cafe, Bristol, VTCommunity Supported Enterprises on the Web The Preservation Trust has created a new, inspiring web resource highlighting clever community supported projects throughout Vermont.  Something akin to Community Supported Agriculture, projects such as the Bobcat Cafe in Bristol and Claire's Restaurant in Hardwick owe their success thanks to significant community investment.  Click here to read more about Community Supported Enterprises.  
Vermont News
Yellow Barn, Arlington, VTVermont Barn Census
How many barns are there in Vermont?  What kind of condition are they in?  Are we losing significant numbers each year?   What can be done to preserve these icons of our history and landscape?  The goal of the Vermont Barn Census is to carry out, for the first time, a state-wide census of Vermont's barns that will lay the foundation for further efforts to preserve them. Visit the Vermont Barn Census website for more information and how you can be a part of it.  Also read recent article in the Burlington Free Press
New Preservation Education Institute Website
The newly designed Historic Windsor/Preservation Education Institute website is up and running: Upcoming workshops include:
  • Window Repair- Danville, Vt.  August 21-23
  • Preservation Philosophy- Cornish, NH August 25-29
  • American Building Design and Technology-August 26-27 in Cornish.
  • Marble as Architectural Ornament- Middlebury, VT  September 11-12

See details.

Funding for Community Projects
Celebrate your community's heritage and identity by sharing it with a local and worldwide audience in 2009 -- the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial -- and for future generations. There are a variety of programs available to fund the restoration of local landmarks and the installation of outdoor interpretive markers. Click here to read on. 
Events at State Owned Historic Sites
Bennington Battle Day, Mt. Independence Rocks, the Plymouth Folk and Blues Concerts, Old Tyme Craft Day, Hike Into History, a Wild Mushroom Hunt!  Special events at Vermont's state owned historic sites continue through the summer and into the fall.  Click here to read more.
National News 

Preservation in Progress, NTHP Conference 20082008 National Preservation Conference
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Online Registration Deadline:  October 20, 2008
Are you dedicated to protecting historic resources in your community? Do you want to strengthen your professional network, meet new partners in the fight for preservation, and rekindle old friendships?  Come to Tulsa and then return home with newfound energy rededicated to your mission knowing you have strong allies in the battle to save our heritage. Tulsa has a wealth of historic resources including a vibrant Art Deco scene and preservation successes and challenges to learn from. We could think of no better location from which to explore such a diverse variety of people, histories and experiences.  Click here for more information.
Dozen Distinctive Destinations
The National Trust for Historic Preservation is now accepting nominations for its list of 2009 Dozen Distinctive Destinations«. Since 2000, the National Trust for Historic Preservation has annually selected communities across the United States that offer cultural and recreational experiences different from the typical vacation destination.  From dynamic downtowns and stunning architecture to cultural diversity and commitments to historic preservation, the selected destinations boast a richness of character and exude an authentic sense of place. To date, there are 108 Distinctive Destinations located in 42 states throughout the country.  Deadline for applications is August 29th.  Click here to read more.
Upcoming Grants
Cultural Facilities Grant, Vermont Arts Council
Deadline: October 1, 2008
Grants to improve facilities used for providing cultural events and activities for the public.  Includes wiring, heating, lighting, stage work, bathrooms and accessibility improvements.  Read on...
National Trust Preservation Funds
Deadline:  October 1, 2008
National Trust Preservation Funds provide two types of assistance to nonprofit organizations and public agencies: 1) matching grants from $500 to $5,000 for preservation planning and educational efforts, and 2) intervention funds for preservation emergencies. Matching grant funds may be used to obtain professional expertise in areas such as architecture, archeology, engineering, preservation planning, land-use planning, fund raising, organizational development and law as well as to provide preservation education activities to educate the public. Read on...
Vermont State Historic Preservation Grants
Deadline: October 6, 2008
50/50 matching grants for the repair and restoration of historic buildings that are used by the public such as town halls, churches, grange halls, museums, etc.  Read on...
Vermont Barn Preservation Grants
Deadline: November 3, 2008
50/50 mathcing grants for the repair and restoration of historic agricultural buildings listed on or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.  Read on...
For Homeowners 
Deteriorating Concrete StairsJohn Leeke's Historic HomeWorks™
This is the third installment of a regular question and answer column on the maintenance and preservation of historic (and just plain old) buildings by John Leeke, American Preservationeer.
As an historic building specialist, Leeke has been helping owners, tradespeople, contractors and architects understand and maintain their historic buildings for 20 years. he has been restoring historic buildings in New England for over 35 years and still spends a good part of his time "with hammer in hand". He has written on restoration and preservation topics for Old-House Journal magazine, Fine Homebuilding, The Journal of Light Construction and other national publications. He now writes and publishes the Practical Restoration Reports.

Back issues of Leeke's Q & A's are now posted on PTV's website:
Q&A 42 , Wood Clapboard & Concrete Stair Repairs
Copyright 2007 John Leeke

I've removed aluminum siding on a house and am going back to the original painted clapboards. We're removing the siding from the gables to use for repairs, then redoing the gables in shakes. Many of the clapboards we've removed have cracks on the back side.  Some cracks are new (I know what caused this, and we've changed our method of removal) and some are old cracks.  Is there a thin glue, or method of thinning glue, that would make these cracked boards useable? Also, is it best to somehow introduce moisture into these before reattaching them, so they're not prone to crack (or maybe just predrill the holes). Thanks. - Tim S., Indiana
Here are two methods to repair splits and cracks in clapboards.
Where the splits can be opened up a little, clean any debris, old paint, caulk and dust out of the gap. Use a thin artist's pallet knife to work a Type-1 exterior waterproof wood adhesive into the gap. A foaming polyurethane adhesive such as Gorilla Glue would be good. Then lay the clapboard on a flat board covered with 6-mil poly sheeting. The poly will keep the adhesive from sticking to the board. Finally, weight down the clapboard to align the wood on both sides of the gap and wedge the clapboard to close the gap.
Wood-epoxy repair materials can be used effectively on bigger splits as well as cracked wood when there is no gap. The epoxy consolidant or primer will penetrate into the gap and tend to act as an adhesive. Apply the epoxy material 2 or 3 time during an hour or two. As the first applications soak into the sides of the crack and begin to harden, the later applications will fill in the slight space, boding the sides together.
For more on using epoxies, see the Practical Restoration Report, Wood-Epoxy Repairs:
Also, see this video at my website:
Exterior Wood 1, Field Report 5,

It shows repairing a split clapboard still on the wall, but the method would be good for removed clapboards working flat on a bench or board.
Pre-drilling, or using a brad-awl for nails is standard practice when re-installing old woodwork. Select a twist bit that is just slightly smaller in diameter than the shank of the nails.
I have some cracking and chipping damage on my front concrete steps probably due to wear & tear and rock salt. The previous owner obviously skim coated the top of a few of the steps and that's what is chipping away. I'd like to put some slate treads on top and repair the risers with concrete or brick if it's not too thick.
I have a few questions:
1. What is the best thickness of slate when using it for steps?
2. Does anyone have suggestions as to which product would be best to use when laying in the slate?
3. What is the best (longest lasting) product to use for fixing the non-slated areas?
Covering the treads with slate may not be the best approach. According to Joe Farrell, restoration contractor in Fayville, MA, slate and bluestone may not hold up well to water freezing and salt that causes flaking and deterioration. Also, the thickness of the slate will make the rise of the top and bottom steps different than the rest, which may cause people to stumble. It's always best to keep keeping the rise of east step consistent along the entire stairway.
Since your deterioration is highly localized in a few spots consider treating just those spots with  filler. This patch and repair approach can be done effectively with epoxy materials designed especially for this purpose. One company is Abatron, which makes several products for concrete repair including, AboWeld and AboCure.
You can mix these two-part epoxy resins and apply them to cracks. Mix it with clean dry sand to fill in voids. For an even appearance you can coat the entire surface of the stairway with the epoxy, then sprinkle on dry sand. After the epoxy has cured sweep off the excess sand.
Get advice from the manufacturer on how to use these materials and practice on some junk concrete before working on your stairway.
262 653-2000
ORDERS: 800 445-1754
Contact Leeke directly for answers to your questions and more information on techniques for restoring and maintaining your historic building. Write to John Leeke, Preservation Consultant at 26 Higgins St. , Portland ME   04103 , 207 773-2306; or by E-mail at or visit his Internet Web Site at

New Publications

Wood WindowWood Window & Energy Efficiency
Are you thinking about dealing with your wood windows in anticipation of high fuel costs this winter?  If so, you may want to read about Greening Your Historic WindowsRead more... 
Additionally, a tip sheet from the National Trust is now available on the importance and how-to's of retaining and repairing your wood windows.  Download the free pdf... 
Historic Barns: Working Assets for Sustainable Farms
A publication that guides barn owners in the adaptation of historic barns for sustainable agriculture practices.
In the Media 

Twain, Wharton homes join others in financial peril
By STEPHANIE REITZ - HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Mark Twain, Edith Wharton and other boldfaced names among the dead have something in common with living Americans in these hard financial times: Their homes are in jeopardy. For scores of historic house museums, simply keeping the lights on has become a challenge...Read full story...
Owners around town revitalize small-scale retail
Rutland Herald - Rutland, VT, USA 
Not that long ago you could find one in every neighborhood in any given town, perhaps more than one. Today, they're the business version of an endangered species: the corner mom-and-pop store. Some do survive by reinventing themselves, finding a niche that includes personal service and home made food and sandwiches... Read full story...
Historic site chief to retire this year
Rutland Herald - Rutland,VT,USA
The foundation and the state Division for Historic Preservation have joint plans to build a new $3 million museum and education center, attached to the ...
Read full story...
Douglas assesses town fire damage
Rutland Herald - Rutland,VT,USA
Engineers hired by both the Wisch family and the Preservation Trust of Vermont say the building can be saved. The building is in the town's historic ... Read full story...
Shard Villa to close
Addison County Independent - Middlebury,VT,USA
SALISBURY - Faced with mounting expenses, soaring fuel bills, lower client rolls and the prospect of major new competition, Shard Villa - one of the oldest and most historically significant senior care facilities in Vermont - will likely close its doors this November.   Read full story...
Petitioners push for Wallingford post office move
Rutland Herald - Rutland, VT,US
A growing number of residents want the Wallingford Post Office moved to another site within the same zip code.  Local businessman Tony Esposito informed the town's Select Board last week he had gathered about 500 signatures on a petition requesting the post office be relocated ... Read full story...