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Walpole Carriage House

21 February 2010

Front after Renovation

   

Since I’m a bit nervous about blogging, I thought it would be easiest to start with a project that is near and dear to my heart, my own home which, except for the landscaping, is now complete after 15 years.

History

The building dates from the mid-1800’s.  It was a livery barn on the farm when draft animals were used.  Horses were stabled there, and the sloped floor allowed wheeled vehicles stored there to be rolled through, using the large barn doors at either end.  The upper level was a hay loft, and a stone-walled ramp that leads up from the side enabled hay to be carted in.  The timber-framed structure with a gambrel roof features 22-inch thick fieldstone walls at the lower level.

The second floor is framed with timbers that were recovered from an even older building – many are notched for mortise-and-tenon joining.  Posts on the lower level are unhewn cedar trunks.   In the 1920’s the upper level was converted to living quarters.  Gas-powered equipment was stored in the barn by then, replacing horses, so the hay-loft was expendable.  The three-bedroom quarters created by the addition of dormers were intended for a farm manager and family, and were appointed with ribbon-fir flooring and pressed tin ceilings, which remain.

The exterior is now clad with cedar shakes, and tongue and groove siding.

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