Historic Stone Masonry Restoration
Why: As the number of new buildings constructed of solid stone masonry has diminished over the past century, so too has the number of skilled artisans available to restore these structures as they age. With few craftspeople proficient in the treatment of traditional stone structures, building owners may unwittingly employ inexperienced tradesmen, whose repair efforts may cause more damage than they resolve. Too often, that damage is irreversible.
What: Restoration of historic stone must address not only the treatment of age-related wear and decay, but also the best ways to arrest and, to whatever degree possible, undo the damage caused by poorly conceived repairs.
To best treat a historic stone structure, the architect must consider ongoing concerns, such as leaks and deterioration, in the context of past repair work, as well as properties and features of the stone itself.
How: This article outlines how to evaluate masonry construction to understand its history and condition, basic characteristics for evaluating stone masonry, types of deterioration in natural stone, and selecting a preservation treatment. The article also contains a list of historic stone buildings for which the authors have designed rehabilitation solutions.