DuBois House Status - 2014

There has been a flurry of activity in the DuBois House for the last few weeks - thanks in part to Elaine Weed who has been relentless in her search for a cabinet to display school records from the One-Room-Schoolhouses. She found a curio cabinet in the newspaper and I investigated and found there were 2 for sale and they would not sell one but they were perfect and a great bargain. After talking with Elaine and Mary DuBois Wright they said "get them both and we will figure out how to pay for them".
With that both were in the DuBois House by that afternoon.
Mary said they were great and she would buy one and after discussions with the board, the other came out of the Ronk One-Room-Schoolhouse Fund

The next issue was where the 2nd curio cabinet would go. The board decided that it could go in the other front room but the room was far from ready for such a nice cabinet. Some of the more optimistic members (Adam) said we could redo the room before the December 3rd meeting when we planned on dedicating the One-Room-Schoolhouse. With that it was agreed that we would have our December 3rd meeting at the DuBois house with dedication of the One-Room-Schoolhouse and the other front room as a museum. Much activity began in the North Front Room:
The first issue was the flaking white paint from the Ceiling. The 1800's ceiling were painted (whitewashed) because candles were the only source of light at night.

Adam said we could "sandblast" with walnut shells and he had all the equipment to do the job but we needed 220 volt for his compressor. An adapter had to be made to go from the stove outlet to Adam's plug:

Adam's equipment was brought and the stripping began.

Meanwhile work started in the Cellar cleaning out the remains of a coal bin and moving historic bricks to the Cellar.

The town Water Supply people were called about our issue with the pipes that froze last winter and they came and worked with Al & Joe to replace the valve and supply water to the outside faucet and an inside faucet.

The next issue was the trim painting in the North Front Room:

The first thought was to just repaint the trim and doors but after investigation it was discovered all the trim was painted with "faux Wood grain" painting that was started in the late 1700's and was very popular in the 1880's. It is very possible that the last the trim was painted was when there were major renovations in 1860.

The "faux" painting method is to first paint with a lighter color as shown where the darker layer has flaked off and then to paint with a darker color and "squeegee" the wet paint off leaving a pattern that looks like wood grain. This was done until the early 1900's when stains were developed that would enhance the wood grain.

The next decision was what to do with the wallpaper that was falling off.

After consulting with "wallpaper experts" areas were marked off where it would be "framed" and protected.

Still moving at light-speed at 70

The blasting started after several problems were solved: Plugged valves, hose broke, walnut shells not screened. The finished job looks great>

The wallpaper cut at the marked areas and the rest removed.

Then the remaining wallpaper was cleaned with archival methods by Libby

Then the plastering began by Bob. The fake fireplace was in bad shape but after a little plaster looks good and will be ready for paint.

Fireplaces fell out of favor in the mid-1800's and were a sign of lower class people and the fireplaces were likely removed when they did major renovations in 1860. All fire places were removed in the house and replaced with wood stoves that were much more efficient at heating a house.

Stoves similar to this were used for heating in the mid-1800's. Thanks to Jim Mallow for donating this stove that will be placed in the Front North Room when finished.

We look forward to seeing you for the
December 3, 2014 meeting at the DuBois House



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