FALL 2017

Tuesdays 1:15 - 4:15 PM, Wheeler House, Room 101
Professor Thomas Visser, Wheeler 204
Office hours: Tuesday and Wednesdays 10:30-11:30 AM or by appointment
email: thomas.visser@uvm.edu
Course syllabus web site: http://www.uvm.edu/histpres/307/hp307syl2017.html

Aug. 29

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

Historic structures reports and architectural conservation assessments
Weaver: Chapter 1 "Introduction" & Chapter 2 "Investigating Old Buildings"
Young: Chapter 1, Overview, 1-16 (recommended)
Association for Preservation Technology International (APT)
AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice
Canadian Association of Heritage Professionals
Appleton Charter
Parks Canada - Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada
Burra Charter/ Australia ICOMOS
Vermont Historic Preservation Consultants List
36 CFR Part 61 Professional Qualifications Standards

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
Collections Asessment for Preservation (CAP) Program/ AIC
Theron Boyd Place- Vermont Historic Site
Shelburne Museum
Aug. 30
5-8 PM
Historic Preservation Annual Welcome Event

Wheeler House- West Veranda
Guests invited

Sept. 5

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; Chapter 14, Synthetic Resins, 254-259
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
Wooden Window Repair Methods- NPS & The Preservation Education Institute
Testing the Energy Performance of Wood Windows in Cold Climates- NCPTT
Efficiency Vermont - Home energy saving information
Burlington Window Catalogue (1940)
Float glass
PB 13: Steel Windows
PB 33: Stained and Leaded Glass
Ives Window Hardware Catalogue (c. 1926)

Saving Windows, Saving Money

Sept. 12

Condition assessments
Structural analysis
Foundations, dampness & drainage

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

PB 39: Controlling Unwanted Moisture in Historic Buildings
All wet...Managing Moisture in Your Historic House
Sept. 19
Condition assessments (continued)
Roofing issues
Flashings and gutters

Building envelope assessments

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

Sept. 26

Flooring & floor coverings


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

Oct. 5

HP 303 Internship Presentations

9 AM - noon - guests invited

Oct. 3
Architectural metals
Weaver, Chapter 9, Architectural metalwork, 175-215
Young, Chapter 7, Architectural Metals, 131 - 154 (recommended)

GSA - NPS Standards for Rehabilitating Historic Buildings: Metals

TPS Metals #3 In-Kind Replacement of Historic Stamped Metal Exterior Siding
TPS Metals #4 Rehabilitating a Historic Iron Bridge
Save Outdoor Sculpture!
Do You Have Lead Pipes in Your Home? (NPR)
The City That Unpoisoned Its Pipes (Next City)
 Oct. 10

Preventative Conservation
Maintenance plans
Emergency stabilization and mothballing

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)
Historic New England: Condition Assessments
New Orleans Charter

Monitoring Temperature and Relative Humidity (NEDCC)

Oct. 13-14
(Friday & Saturday)

Historic New England Field School in Preservation Practice: Using Easements to Protect Historic Properties

At Shirley Center Meetinghouse, 41 Brown Road, Shirley, Massachusetts. Registration is required. Space is limited to 20. Call 617-994-6644 for more information or register online. (Student rate available.)

Oct. 13-14
(Friday & Saturday)

Association for Preservation Technology (APT) annual conference

At Westin Ottawa & Chateau Laurier Hotel, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Presented in association with the National Trust of Canada and the Canadian Association of Heritage Professionals (CAHP-ACECP)
Pre-registration is required. (Student rate available.)

Oct. 17

Conservation in a Museum Context
Site visit: Shelburne Museum
Conservation Lab, collections care
Meet at 1:15 PM at Shelburne Museum Conservation Lab, Route 7 / 5555 Shelburne Road, Shelburne, VT. Parking lot is on east side, opposite the covered bridge. Conservation lab is at rear right.

Guest speakers: Nancie Ravenel, object conservator; Chip Stulen, director of buildings; Ron Wanamaker, carpenter, Shelburne Museum



Oct. 24

Conservation in a Museum Context (continued)
Site visit: Shelburne Museum
Environmental management and collections care
Meet at 1:15 PM at Shelburne Museum Conservation Lab, Route 7, Shelburne, VT.


Oct. 31

Sustainability and Historic Preservation: "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
Other health concerns
Young: Chapter 22, Sustainability, 389- 401 (recommended)
APT Technical Committee on Sustainable Preservation
Pocantico Call to Action on Climate Impacts and Cultural Heritage
EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting Rules
EPA "A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home" EPA Sick Building Syndrome
EPA Asbestos
EPA Pentachlorophenol
EPA Chromated Copper Arsenate (CCA)
Beyond Pesticides CCA Fact Sheet

OSHA methylene chloride

The Fatal Attraction of Lead (BBC)
PCBs in Caulk (US EPA)
Hantavirus (CDC)
 Nov. 7

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 11, Entrances and Porches, 221-238 (recommended)

National Park Service - PB 3 Conserving Energy in Historic Buildings
LEED Existing Buildings
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
Nov. 8
Historic Preservation Comprehensive Examinations 8:00 - 12:00 PM Wheeler 103
Nov. 14
Mechanical & Electrical Equipment (continued)
Lighting & Heating

PB 24: Heating, Ventilating, and Cooling

Young, Chapter 21, Lighting and Electrical Systems, 377-488 (recommended)

Nov. 21
Thanksgiving recess

No class

Nov. 28

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 - Historic Preservation
ACHP/Federal Emergency Management Agency Model Statewide Programmatic Agreement
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
Accessibility in Burlington (Seven Days)
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
Disaster Resources - Texas Historical Commission

Dec. 5

Structural and Seismic Issues

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
Even Buildings with Seismic Retrofits Damaged in Napa Earthquake - LA Times
How concrete buildings fail in earthquakes - LA Times
L.A.'s epic task: Fixing buildings that earthquakes could flatten- LA Times

Dec. 13
Graduate Hooding Ceremony Ira Allen Chapel

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. Include 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 include how effectively it communicates your plan for the project in a professional manner.

    ** The Shelburne Museum has kindly offered an invitation to students in this class to conduct volunteer architectural conservation assessments on Museum buildings. For further information on this option, contact Laura Need <lneed@shelburnemuseum.org>, volunteer coordinator at Shelburne Museum.

    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 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.


    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, NPS

    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

    Arbogast, David. How to Write a Historic Structure Report. Norton. 2010.
    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 on reserve
    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

    *Optional HP 307 travel grant scholarships

    Enrolled students in HP 307 may request a travel grant scholarship to attend either the 2017 Association for Preservation Technology International annual conference in Ottawa, Ontario or the 2017 Historic New England Field School in Professional Practice in Shirley, Massachusetts. Both events are scheduled for October 13 & 14, 2017.

    Up to $1000 for allowable expenses may be requested for a HP 307 travel grant scholarship. Allowable expenses may include transportation and accommodation expenses and conference/worshop fees at student rates. According to University and federal policies, these will be considered scholarships and will be handled according to University accounting procedures discussed at http://www.uvm.edu/policies/acct/scholarships.pdf. Funding for the HP 307 travel grant scholarships is provided by the Historic Preservation Program Endowment Fund through the generosity of private donations to the UVM Historic Preservation Program.

    All travel shall be at the student's own risk. All travel and lodging arrangements and liabilities are the responsibility of each student. Students are also responsible for passports required for international travel. The University of Vermont, its faculty and staff shall bear no liability for risks associated with the travel supported by these grants. The attendance of any faculty or staff of the University of Vermont at any conferences, events or places visited by award recipients shall not imply any liability for the students by the faculty or staff or the University of Vermont.

    Students will be required to sign a Memorandum of Agreement before travel grant scholarship funds are provided. Only complete and satisfactory applications will be receive awards. Advance arrangements must be made so as to avoid conflicts with any scheduled classes or teaching assistantship responsibilities.

    As pre-registration is required to attend either professional event, travel grant scholarship applications may be submitted by students enrolled in HP 307 by email to Prof. Visser in advance. The deadline for HP 307 travel grant scholarships applications will be one month before requested travel dates.

    HP 307 travel grant scholarships applications shall include the following information:

    1. Name, email address, mailing address and telephone number of the applicant;
    2. A statement of purpose for the grant, including a discussion of how this award will support the development of professional historic preservation career goals;
    3. A planned day-to-day itinerary including modes of travel and accomodations and names, addresses and telephone numbers of the conferences or training workshops to be attended. Note: The purpose of these grants is not to fund expenses associated with sight-seeing or pleasure trips.
    4. A detailed budget of anticipated expenses for which reimbursement is being requested.

    HP 307 travel grant scholarships applications will be assessed according to the following criteria:

    1. The potential for learning about the professional practice of historic preservation;
    2. Exposure to the roles of preservation professionals;
    3. Potential for career development;
    4. Schedule and itinerary;
    5. Budget.

    Each HP 307 travel grant scholarship will be awarded through written notification that will include a letter of agreement that must be signed by the recipient and returned to Prof. Visser, the director of the Historic Preservation Program before travel commences and before expenses are incurred.

    HP 307 travel grant scholarship completion reports are required to be submitted to Prof. Visser by all travel grant recipients within one week of return from travel. These will then be reviewed and forwarded with a request to initiate payments through the University of Vermont as scholarships. This process of review for possible scholarship reimbursement may take a month or more. If satisfactory completion reports are not submitted by two weeks before the last class in the semester, the grant will be forfeited. The following information is to be included in the travel grant scholarship report:

    1. A letter of acknowledgment;
    2. The actual travel itinerary including names and addresses of the conference events and/or training workshops attended;
    3. An expense accounting on a travel form that meets the requirements of the UVM Accounting Department with original receipts attached for all reimbursable expenses.

    © T. Visser, UVM Historic Preservation Program