Good documentary on historic home restoration?
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GhostStoryWriter



Joined: 18 Apr 2010
Posts: 3
Location: Harrisonburg, VA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 3:06 pm    Post subject: Good documentary on historic home restoration? Reply with quote

Hi. I just joined and though I'm interested in someday restoring historic homes, I'm actually here because I'm writing a novel on this topic. My characters are restoring an American Civil War era home and I don't know very much about the "nuts and bolts" things that go on when you take on this type of project.

Could anyone recommend a good documentary or home preservation film that I could watch, just so I could get a sense of what the process is like? It doesn't necessarily need to discuss a Civil War era home, although that would be wonderful. Thanks!

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jade



Joined: 11 Feb 2005
Posts: 785
Location: Hawley MA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hello gsw and welcome to the site...

how exciting that you are setting out to write anovel whose characters will be restoring a mid 18th century home...

i'm not familiar with documentaries or films but i would suggest any number of books to get a good sense of construction, style and vernacular...

++a field guide to american houses--virginia and lee mcalester

++historic preservation, curatorial management of the built world--james marston fitch

++renovating old houses--george nash

++restoring old houses--nigel hutchins

another website you may want to visit is www.oldhouseweb.com/forums lots of good information and experiences from those who are taking good care of their old house...plenty of 'before & after' photos too...

this may also be a place from which to cull good information: http://centennial.historicnewengland.org/events-programs/the-preservation-movement-then-and-now/the-preservation-movement-then-and-now

hope that helps.....
......jade
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rncx



Joined: 21 Jun 2008
Posts: 660
Location: Little Rock, AR

PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 1:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

or if you're looking for something specific, just ask ;).

i'm renovating mine from the inside out, recreating what was.

i'm sure lots of others on here are doing or have done basically the same thing.

if you're just interested in the process, and scenarios that arise, we could probably just give you examples if you tell us what you're looking for.
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GhostStoryWriter



Joined: 18 Apr 2010
Posts: 3
Location: Harrisonburg, VA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2010 6:27 pm    Post subject: Thanks! Reply with quote

Thanks to those of you who suggested books and online resources for the novel I'm writing! Sorry the response is so late, but I had trouble getting on the site for awhile and things have been very busy. Anyway, I really appreciate your advice and am always open to hearing more!
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GhostStoryWriter



Joined: 18 Apr 2010
Posts: 3
Location: Harrisonburg, VA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2010 6:38 pm    Post subject: Specific Questions...hmm Reply with quote

After doing a bit of research, I think I now know enough about historic restoration to ask a few more specific questions. I'd be grateful to anyone who would indulge me with a reply!

1. What types of repair projects did you tackle first?

2. What would be the most common repairs that would need to be done on an American Civil War era home that has been sitting empty for say...5 years? (One that hasn't been used for family living in decades)

3. What sorts of challenges have you run into, as you tried your hardest to keep the home "historically accurate"?

4. Which repair projects were "too much" for you to handle and required outside help from contractors, etc.?

5. What mistakes would you expect a rookie in home restoration to make (ranging from the distasteful to the catastrophic)?

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