Restoration

Skee's Diner: A Slice of Americana in Progress

Posted on: May 9th, 2013 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

 

Written by Mallory Somerset, Preservation Intern

Skee’s Diner in Torrington, Conn., c. 2008. Credit: Improbcat, Wikimedia Commons
Skee’s Diner in Torrington, Conn., c. 2008

The American dining car evokes a mid-century nostalgia like nothing else. Perhaps the most recognizable (though not necessarily by name) are dining cars manufactured by the Jerry O’Mahony Company between 1917 and 1941.

Stand-alone Streamline Moderne coaches were manufactured in a factory in New Jersey and brought by flatbed to their final destinations across the States. They had model names like “Victory” and “Monarch” and were built to last 30 years, according to the brochures. Though details such as length and roof shape differ with each model, the interiors are almost identical, and it is this assembly-line sheen of uniformity that give the O’Mahony diners their appeal to vintage diner enthusiasts even today.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

The Curtain Rises Again for the Culpeper State Theatre

Posted on: May 8th, 2013 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

 

Written by Erica Stewart, Manager, Public Affairs

The State Theatre of Culpeper before and after renovation. Credits: LWPrencipe, Flickr; Ed Bednarczyk
The State Theatre of Culpeper before and after renovation

After sitting vacant for almost a decade, the 1938 Art Deco State Theatre of Culpeper, Va., is back in business.

For years, the theatre sat abandoned, coming perilously close to demolition before being purchased by Culpeper natives Greg and Liz Yates. At the time, there was a hole in the ceiling near the stage and the building was seriously dilapidated. But thanks to a committed group of community members, led by the State Theater Foundation, a $9.3 million historic rehabilitation has raised the curtain on the former vaudeville and movie house, revealing a gorgeous 560-seat live theatre.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

 

The wood shakes on the house were deteriorating by the time Fenton purchased the property. He consulted with architects, fellow historic homeowners, and manufacturers of products designed for historic buildings in order to learn how to best repair them. He eventually stripped and re-stained each shake by hand.

It is said to be the largest Craftsman residence ever built, and now, after an extensive 25-year restoration, the three-story house in the Hollywood Hills of Los Angeles known as Artemesia is celebrating its centennial.

Built in 1913, Artemesia was designed by architect Frank A. Brown for the family of engineer Frederick E. Engstrum, whose father founded a major Southern California construction company.

After passing through the hands of several owners, the house sat largely neglected since the early 1940s, until advertising executive Leonard Fenton purchased the house in 1987 at the tender age of 23.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser is the Los Angeles-based Field Editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys writing and thinking about history, art, architecture, and public space.

A Modern Use for a Modernist Gem in Palm Springs

Posted on: March 22nd, 2013 by Katherine Flynn

 

A rendering of the Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center, Edwards Harris Pavilion. The museum is tentatively scheduled to open the fall of 2014. Credit: Courtesy Marmol+Radziner and Palm Springs Art Museum
A rendering of the Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center, Edwards Harris Pavilion. The museum is tentatively scheduled to open the fall of 2014.

When Sidney Williams and the the Palm Springs Art Museum staff decided to invest in an old bank building downtown for a new architecture and design center, it helped that the museum and the bank already had something in common -- both were designed by the same Modernist architect.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Katherine Flynn

Katherine Flynn

Katherine Flynn is an assistant editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys coffee, record stores and uncovering the stories behind historic places. Follow her on Twitter at @kateallthetime.

"Oregon Trail" Comes to Life at the Pioneer Mothers Memorial Cabin

Posted on: March 21st, 2013 by David Robert Weible 5 Comments

 

A school group gathers in front of the Pioneer Mothers Memorial Cabin. Credit: Volunteers of the Pioneer Mothers Memorial Cabin
A school group gathers in front of the Pioneer Mothers Memorial Cabin.

If you spent any portion of your childhood in the 1980s or '90s, then invariably your favorite part of the school day was bucking the lesson plan in computer class and rabidly killing bison, fording rivers, and visiting Chimney Rock in the Oregon Trail video game. If you were unfortunate enough to have missed this phenomenon of modern pedagogy, then suffice it to say that the game, in which the player acted as the wagon master for a family that set out on the Oregon Trail from Missouri, was the greatest video game of all time.

In the video game, once you made it to Oregon’s Willamette Valley, where many who traveled the actual Oregon Trail between the 1840s and 1860s settled, you were safe from the dangers of the trail and your educational experience ended. But in the case of the Pioneer Mothers Memorial Cabin, located about 40 minutes southwest of downtown Portland on the banks of the Willamette River, the education and the danger (albeit not from raiding parties or diphtheria), continue today.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

David Robert Weible

David Robert Weible

David Robert Weible is an assistant editor at Preservation magazine. He came to DC from Cleveland, Ohio, where he wrote for Sailing World and Outside magazines.