Friday, April 18, 2008

The Year of the Roof

2008 is indeed the year when many of our properties are receiving much needed new roofs (rooves?) An earlier post celebrated the completion of the one on Historic Smithfield and the John Marshall House is waiting the start of that replacement process. Yesterday, I stopped by The Old Stone House here in Richmond to view progress on that project. This is of course not directly operated by APVA Preservation Virginia, but is an owned property. The Edgar Allan Poe Foundation raised the money and is overseeing the project. We did have approval on the type of material used. As you can see from the photos of the completed rear face, they are using a good quality cedar shingle. This is encouraging in that the same company doing this job (Paul Saunders Roofing) is under contract for the Marshall House roof. I suspect the Marshall House may have to wait until this one is completed before they move there for that job. The staff member at the Stone House says that Saunders is expected to undertake the front face next week.

Note the deteriorated shingles on the front face in the shot taken yesterday afternoon. Wooden shingles are the most authentic and historically appropriate roof covering for this and for the Marshall House. The urban environment will certainly shorten the life of a wood shingled roof. However, with the accessibility of this roof to view, using a synthetic product is more problematic. We have chosen to go with a cement based Hendricks Tile on the Marshall roof in the hope it will last longer. Being a two story house with even more elevation from the street, the roof of the Marshall House is less visible to the average viewer. We expect that the trade off in life versus strict authenticity will work in the Marshall situation where it may not have worked as well at the Old Stone House.

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