Heritage Restoration project at Dundurn Castle, Hamilton ON. Entry 2

As the heritage building restoration project moves along and we have removed as much of the failed original plaster as we need to, There have been a few interesting things uncovered along the way. Certain areas have exposed previous changes in the structure of the building which obviously cannot be seen when the plaster is in place.

 

One of these findings indicates that the original staircase at some point may have been altered slightly. Another shows one of  the original timber frame principal uprights that is now part of the larger structure and surrounded by brick infill. It has always been known that the timber frame structure that first stood there was used as a foundation for a later larger building built around it, but what this gives is an idea of exactly where those key timber members were. I guess what I have found ineteresting about this project and other heritage projects that we have undertaken, is although we are essentially there to do a specific job, our job can sometimes open doorways into the past that give us all a better idea of the history that is held in these great heritage buildings and the importance of preserving them.

As you can see by the picture of the underside of the staircase above left, the type of lath changes from riven on the left to a later sawn type on the right. This would indicate a later repair or as we mentioned before an alteration to the staircase structure.