FALL 2013

Tuesdays 1:00 - 3:45 PM, Wheeler House, Room 101
Prof. Thomas Visser, Wheeler 207, email: thomas.visser@uvm.edu
Course web site http://www.uvm.edu/histpres/307/hp307syl2013.html
Aug. 27

1. Course introduction
Conservation and preservation philosophy
Charters, standards and treatment recommendations
Preservation consulting, project proposal development and cost estimates
Preservation ethics

Weaver: Chapter 1, Introduction
Young: Chapter 1, Overview, 1-16 (recommended)
AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice
Canadian Association of Heritage Professionals
Burra Charter/ Australia ICOMOS
Sept. 3
2. Architectural conservation assessments
Historic structures reports
Conservation of historic public landmarks
Weaver: Chapter 2, Investigating Old Buildings, 3-11
PB 17: Architectural Character
PB 43: The Preparation and Use of Historic Structures Reports
HABS Historical Reports Guidelines
California State Parks - Historic Building Condition Assessment
George Rogers Clark Memorial HSR
Sept. 10

3. Windows & doors
Wooden windows and glass
Window energy efficiency issues
Window & door surveys
Window and door conservation strategies
Non-wooden windows conservation and preservation issues

Assignment 1 Proposal due
Weaver: Chapter 11 Architectural Glass, 232-238
Young: Chapter 10, Windows, 199-220; Chapter 15, Art and Stained Glass, 289-302 (recommended)
Window surveys template
Secretary Standards & Guidelines - Windows

PB 9: Repair of Historic Wooden Windows
PB 44: The Use of Awnings on Historic Buildings Repair, Replacement & New Design

Saving Windows, Saving Money - NTHP
Testing the Energy Performance of Wood Windows in Cold Climates- NCPTT
Efficiency Vermont - Home energy saving information
English Heritage - Sash windows: Why they are worth keeping
English Heritage - Research into the Thermal Performance of Traditional Windows
Burlington Window Catalogue (1940)
Float glass
PB 13: Steel Windows
PB 33: Stained and Leaded Glass

Sept. 17

4. Foundations, dampness & drainage



Weaver, Chapter 12, Foundations and Footings, 239-248
Young, Chapter 3, Building Pathology, 31-44

PB 39: Controlling Unwanted Moisture in Historic Buildings
Managing Moisture in Your Historic House
Sept. 24
5. Building Envelopes
Home inspections
Invited guest speaker: Henri de Marne, nationally syndicated columnist and home inspection consultant


Oct. 1
6. Architectural metals

Roofing, flashing and gutters
Weaver, Chapter 9, Architectural metalwork, 175-215
Young, Chapter 7, Architectural Metals, 131 - 154 (recommended)

NPS Standards for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings: Metals

(or) NPS metals - preservation guidelines

TPS Metals #3 In-Kind Replacement of Historic Stamped Metal Exterior Siding
TPS Metals #4 Rehabilitating a Historic Iron Bridge
Save Outdoor Sculpture!

Weaver, Chapter 13, Restoring Slate Roofing, 249-253
Young, Chapter 8, Roofing, 155-174; Chapter 12, Storefronts, 239-252 (recommended)
TPS Metals #2: Restoring Metal Roof Cornices
PB 34: Composition Ornament
PB 4: Roofing for Historic Buildings
PB 19: Repair of Wooden Shingle Roofs
PB 29: Slate Roofs
PB 30: Clay Tile Roofs
 Oct. 8

7a. Preventative Conservation
Maintenance plans
Emergency stabilization and mothballing

7b. Conservation Assessments for Museums

Architectural conservation assessments and historic structures reports for museums and institutions

Assignment 2 Window & Door Assessment due

Visser, Thomas. "A Primer on Conservation Assessments and Emergency Stabilization for Historic Farm Buildings." Association for Preservation Technology Bulletin 25, no. 3-4 (1994): 64-69. (JSTOR)

Young, Chapter 9, Exterior Wall Cladding, 175-198 (recommended)
Feilden: Chapter 16, Preventative maintenance, 235-250 (recommended)
PB 31: Mothballing
Conservation Assessment Program (CAP)
Heritage Preservation
Conservation Assessment Program: Handbook for Assessors
Historic New England: Condition Assessments
New Orleans Charter

Oct. 9

HP Internship Presentations - 8:30 - 12:30

Billings - North Lounge

Oct. 15

8. Conservation in a Museum Context
Site visit: Shelburne Museum
Conservation lab, collections care
Meet at 1:00 PM at Shelburne Museum Conservation Lab, Route 7, Shelburne, VT. Parking lot is on east side, opposite the covered bridge.

Weaver: Chapter 14, Synthetic Resins, 254-259



Oct. 22

9. Conservation in a Museum Context (continued)
Site visit: Shelburne Museum
Environmental management and collections care
Meet at 1:00 PM at Shelburne Museum Conservation Lab, Route 7, Shelburne, VT.


Oct. 29

10. Sustainability and "The Green Issue"

"Green" building conservation
Mold and Dampness Issues
IR imaging assessments
Sick Building syndrome
Rehab hazards

Lead paint hazard mitigation and historic preservation
Solvents, strippers, adhesives & preservatives
Young: Chapter 22, Sustainability, 389- 401 (recommended)
EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting Rules
EPA "A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home"EPA Sick Building Syndrome
EPA Asbestos
EPA Chromated Copper Arsenate (CCA)
Beyond Pesticides CCA Fact Sheet

OSHA methylene chloride

CMHC Moisture and Mold
CMHC Fighting Asthma in Your House
Lead and bisphenol A concentrations in the Canadian population
PCBs in Caulk (US EPA)
 Nov. 5

11. Mechanical & Electrical Equipment

Energy efficiency and HVAC issues in historic buildings

IR imaging assessments (continued)




Assignment 3 Exterior Envelope (Walls, Features, Foundation, and Roof) Assessment due

Young, Chapter 19, HVAC systems, 353-364; Chapter 20, Building Service Systems, 365-376; Chapter 21, Lighting and Electrical Systems, 377-288; Chapter 11, Entrances and Porches, 221-238 ((recommended)

National Park Service - PB 3 Conserving Energy in Historic Buildings
PB 24: Heating, Ventilating, and Cooling
Weatherization Guide to Older and Historic Buildings - NTHP
LEED Existing Buildings
English Heritage: Climate Change and Your Home
National Institute of Building Sciences: Sustainable Historic Preservation Guidelines
The Greenest Building: Quantifying the Environmental Value of Building Reuse
NREL: Implementing Solar PV Projects on Historic Buildings and in Historic Districts
Parks Canada - Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada
NREL-Implementing Solar PV Projects on Historic Buildings and in Historic Districts
Nov. 12
12. Interiors

Flooring & floor coverings

Weaver: Chapter 15 Historic Wallpapers, 260-264
Eaton's Wallpapers Catalogue (1938)
Young, Chapter 13, Floors, 255-270; Chapter 14, Walls and Ceilings, 271-288 (recommended)
Armstrong Linoleum Catalogue (1940)

Nov. 13 Comprehensive Examinations 8:30 - 12:30 PM Wheeler 103
Nov. 19

13. Code Compliance for Historic Buildings
Fire and life safety strategies

ADA and accessibility strategies

Emergency management and preparedness


Feilden: Chapter 17, Fire, 251-260 (recommended)
Young, Chapter 2, Health and Safety, 17-30 (recommended)
PB 32: Making Historic Buildings Accessible
PB 14: New Exterior Additions
PB 18: Rehabilitating Interiors
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
FEMA Environmental, Historic Preservation, and Cultural Resources Programs
Heritage Preservation: emergency preparedness information resources
ACHP/Federal Emergency Management Agency Model Statewide Programmatic Agreement
Heritage Preservation/FEMA Heritage Emergency National Task Force
Accessibility for Historic Buildings: A Field Guide (7.7MB pdf)
2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design
NEA Accessibility Planning and Resource Guide for Cultural Administrators
Fire & Building Safety Code Compliance for Historic Buildings: A Field Guide (10.2 MB pdf)
Flame Spread Performance of Wood Products
International Existing Building Code
Vermont Fire & Building Safety Code
Vermont Flood Guide: Preparation, Response & Recovery

Nov. 25–29

Thanksgiving break


Dec. 3

14. Structural and Seismic Issues

Student presentations & discussion

Professional practice and career development strategies in architectural conservation

Assignment 4 Interior Assessment due
PB 41 The Seismic Retrofit of Historic Buildings Keeping Preservation in the Forefront
Architectural issues in the seismic rehabilitation of masonry buildings
USGS Earthquake Hazards Program

Course goals, assignments and expectations


Assignment 1 - Proposal

Develop a formal proposal for your architectural conservation assessment survey project. In addition to a formal cover letter, provide a separate proposal that includes the following information:

  • A. Your name and contact information
  • B. The full building address to be researched and a concise summary of its history
  • B. Owner and location (If applicable. Permission for access is your responsibility. You must bear all liabilities. Be concerned about your safety at all times!)
  • C. An outline of the scope of activities and describe the final product format
  • D. An estimate of your total research time in hours and your expenses in dollars. (These are your responsibilities.)
  • The criteria for grading your proposal will be how effectively it communicates your plan for the project in a professional manner.

    Assignment 2 - Window and Door Assessment

    Conduct a window survey of exterior windows and doors on an historic building. For each window and door, document the location, design, and features. Assess the condition and functionality of each visible component feature that you can access directly or from observation from the outside. Determine the causes of deterioration or malfunctions. Offer appropriate treatment recommendations to the extent of your expertise and qualifications. The window survey report may use as a guide the outline at http://www.uvm.edu/histpres/307/windowsurveys.html . Include in the final report annotated measured sketch drawings of the building elevations and of each type of window and door. Condense information into tables and charts if possible. These drawings should be bound into the report. Also include images of all windows and doors surveyed.

    Assignment 3 - Exterior Assessment

    Conduct an exterior envelope assessment of the roofs, walls, features and foundation of an historic building. Select a building for which you will access to both the interior of the basement and the exterior of the foundation, the exterior walls, and for which you can clearly see the roof from the ground or adjacent buildings. For safety reasons, this project is to be done without the use of ladders and without directly accessing on the roof.

    Document the materials, construction techniques, design, and features of the exterior envelope and the foundation. Assess the conditions and determine the causes of deterioration. Also document the materials, construction techniques, design, and features of the roofing and flashings. Based on your observations from the ground and from inside the building, assess the conditions and determine the causes of deterioration. Offer appropriate treatment recommendations with estimates of the urgency of any repairs to the extent of your expertise and qualifications. Condense information into tables and charts if possible. Include in the final bound report annotated measured drawings or annotated digital images of all the exterior wall and foundation elevations and at least one representative basement wall from the inside. Also include annotated digital images of the roof as can be gathered from the ground or adjacent buildings. Provide specific information on any recommended replacement products or treatment materials in an appendix.

    Assignment 4 - Interior Assessment

    Conduct an assessment of the accessible spaces on the interior of an historic building. For each significant character defining feature (including ceilings, walls, wallpapers, wall coverings, floorings or floor coverings, stairways, built-in features, cabinetry and mechanical and electrical components) document the feature and its materials, installation techniques, design, function and details. If historic, estimate its age. Assess the conditions and determine the causes of deterioration or malfunctions to the extent of your expertise and qualifications. Conduct an IR assessment of at least one interior space. Offer appropriate preservation treatment recommendations with estimates of the urgency of any repairs. Also discuss potential strategies to improve the energy conservation performance of the buildings. Condense information into tables and charts if possible. Include annotated digital images in the final bound report. Provide specific information on any recommended replacement products or treatment materials in an appendix.

    Travel Grant Scholarships

    Historic preservation graduate students enrolled in HP 307 are eligible to apply for a travel grant scholarship to help with expenses incurred to attend a professional architectural conservation and historic preservation conference or workshop during the fall semester.


    Grades on assignments will reflect the quality of the work and its professional appearance and organization.
    Grades in the "A" range will reflect work that has achieved a professional level of expectations in the preservation field.
    Grades in the "B" range will reflect work that would require additional work to be well-received by a client or supervisor.

    Grades below "B" will reflect professionally unacceptable work that could be rejected by a client or supervisor or could diminish one's professional reputation. Course grades will be computed as follows:

    Assignment 1 Proposal
    Assignment 2 Windows & Doors
    Assignment 3 Exterior
    Assignment 4 Interior

    Required texts

    Weaver, Martin. Conserving Buildings. New York: John Wiley. 1997.
    Technical Preservation Services, National Park Service
    Preservation Briefs, National Park Service
    Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties, National Park Service

    Recommended texts

    Feilden, Bernard. Conservation of Historic Buildings. Architectural Press. 2003.
    Young, Robert A. Historic Preservation Technology. New York: John Wiley. 2008.

    Recommended readings and references

    Fischetti, David. Structural Investigation of Historic Buildings: A Case Study Guide to Preservation Technology for Buildings, Bridges, Towers and Mills. Wiley. 2009.
    Fitch, James Marston. Historic Preservation. Charlottesville: Univ. of Virginia Press. 1992.
    Garvin, James. A Building History of Northern New England. Hanover: Univ. Press of New England. 2001.
    Green, Sara Wolf, ed. The Conservation Assessment. Washington: National Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Property. 1990.
    Jandl, H. Ward, ed. The Technology of Historic American Buildings. Washington: APT. 1983.
    Jester, Thomas C. Twentieth-Century Building Materials. Washington, D. C.: National Park Service. 1995.
    Klemisch, Jürgen. Maintenance of Historic Buildings: A Practical Handbook. Dorset, UK: Donhead Publications. 2011.
    Moss, Roger. Lighting for Historic Buildings. Washington: Preservation Press. 1988.
    Nylander, Richard. Wallpapers for Historic Buildings. Washington: Preservation Press. 1992.
    Rosenstiel, Helene. Floor Coverings for Historic Buildings. Washington: Preservation Press. 1988.
    Shivers, Natalie. Walls & Moldings. Washington: Preservation Press. 1990.
    Spennemann, Dirk H. R., and Look, David W., ed. Disaster Management Programs for Historic Sites. San Francisco: National Park Service. 1998.
    Stubbs, John. Time Honored: A Global View of Architectural Conservation. Wiley. 2009.
    Visser, Thomas. Various examples of Architectural Conservation Assessment professional reports
    Waite, Diana S. Ornamental Ironwork. Albany: Mount Ida Press. 1990.
    Weaver, Martin. Conserving Buildings. New York: John Wiley. 1997.
    Welchel, Harriet, ed. Caring for Your Historic House. Heritage Preservation and National Park Service, ed. New York: Abrams. 1998.

    Additional online resources

    APT Bulletin (Off-campus access to JStor through UVM Library)
    Preservation Education & Research | PER Journal
    Conservation Principles for the Sustainable Management of the Historic Environment
    Standards for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada

    Interpreting the Standards Bulletins
    Building Technology Heritage Library

    ©UVM Historic Preservation Program
    Last updated: November 18, 2013