The 1980’s was a time of stylistic turmoil. We can all agree on that, right?
I mean, basically we all dressed like this every day.
Or, maybe that was me in a Halloween costume in third grade. Not much difference, probably.
SPEAKING of Halloween, which you all should know is a HUGE DEAL on Martin Place, where we live – the most common thing that kids told us at our house was “You have the scariest porch ever.” Oh, honesty, how I love you. But seriously – the fact is that over 1,000 kids trick-or-treat on our street each year, and it is LEGEND in the state of Indiana for being the best place to go… I worry about the porch being safe and having kids with masks falling off of it.
Martin Place at Halloween : Artwork by local artist Tom Peters.
I wish I had a bit more information on the porch, besides the fact that it is being systematically eaten by water. And carpenter ants. But, we DO know that it underwent a restoration to its current style in the 1980s. Stylistic turmoil.
In the description of the house from the National Register of Historic Places nomination form, we read this :
Now, I don’t know too much about how architecture was researched in the 80s, but the porch columns do not – at all – reflect the “Queen Anne Style of the house.” They were boxy and foreboding and really cut off the visual circulation of the house.
The earliest picture I have of the house is from 1910.
The white (!) house on the left, is our girl. It looks like the house is much closer to the ground, and has cement or stone steps. There is no railing, and the columns are quite simple. The brick base at the bottom is solid.
The porch was re-built in the 1980’s. In this picture from the Indianapolis Star, you can see that the ceiling of the porch hasn’t been built yet, and there are temporary posts holding up the roof. PERFECT opportunity to take a field trip, and have kiddos sitting in the construction zone! Note that the brick base is brought back, but it is not solid. This picture is from 1986.
Also from 1986, we have this picture. The witch’s hat has been added, and the porch columns are taking shape. Now, in this picture, if I pretend that the base of each column is an extension of the brick, I think I would like this (and agree that it has Victorian sophistications). Also, notice the awesome station wagon, and the fact that the house has no fence out front, and also no arbor.
The end result, or course, was this porch :
With these columns :
We didn’t tackle the porch with the initial restoration of the exterior, because we just flat-out ran out of money. We weren’t sure if we were going to be able to do it this summer or not, but we were able to make it happen! Much like the rest of the house, the porch was primarily in bad shape because of water. I mean, this porch made it almost 30 years. Not too bad, all things considered.
Some of the damage :
One last look at her – then she’s getting her much-deserved facelift.
We hired the same guys who did the exterior of the house to come and do the porch. Doug and I are helping on this project, but we needed to hire out the majority to get it done this century. First, ripping off the floor!
There structure wasn’t in too bad of shape. There certainly was rot on the edges.
And they rebuilt some of the interior with sister joists to be able to have something really solid to nail the floor to.
Under the porch was a wealth of trash, building supplies, and a plethora of beer cans. SO much was under here!
The porch posts came down –
– and temporary posts went up.
The guys have been working really hard in some seriously hot weather to get all this done!
The porch floor showed up, and so did the porch posts – we are duplicating the posts we put on the balcony.
The center of the porch floor was sagging, and since no one likes a saggy porch, cement and a jack went in, to live forever underneath.
Ready for floorboards! The first pieces of tongue-and-groove flooring is going in!
At the end of the first couple of days, this was the new view of the house! More changes to come! (Oh, yeah. We took down the arbor. I’ll cover more of that in the next post!).