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SYRACUSE

MISSION PARTIALLY ACCOMPLISHED

Exterior restoration of Craftsman furniture maker Gustav Stickley’s home is finished

Rick Moriarty rmoriarty@syracuse.com

The exterior of famed Craftsman furniture maker Gustav Stickley’s home in Syracuse has been restored to its 1902 appearance.

Preservation, local and state officials gathered last week at the house at 438 Columbus Ave. to mark the occasion, a milestone in a years-long effort to restore the 118-year-old home.

Fundraising is underway for the second phase of the project, the restoration of its interior.

Stickley bought the home in June 1900 and rebuilt its interior in 1902 following a fire.

It is widely regarded as the first comprehensive Craftsman-style residential interior in the nation. Much of Stickley’s interior design remains intact on the first and second floors.

Stickley, who died in the house in 1942, is famous for his Craftsman, or mission, style furniture. He was also a major promoter of the Arts & Crafts movement in the U.S. in the early 1900s.

He owned the house from 1900 to 1911 and lived there again from 1919 until his death. The home is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The exterior work consisted of extensive repairs to the siding and trim; window restoration; structural stabilization; a new roof; asbestos abatement; and painting the house with

SEE STICKLEY, A12

The exterior of famed furniture maker Gustav Stickley’s home at 438 Columbus Ave. in Syracuse has been restored to its 1902 appearance. At left is the exterior as it appeared in January 2017 and a rendering of the restored exterior. Below is the completed restoration.

Photos by Rick Moriarty, rmoriarty@sy racuse.com

Gustav Stickley


STICKLEY

FROM A1

the same colors that research determined Stickley used on his home.

It also involved reconstruction of the 1902 front porch, which was removed more than 50 years ago.

Project manager Beth Crawford, of Crawford & Stearns Architects and Preservation Planners, said bricks recovered from an old Iowa bank destroyed by a tornado were used in the reconstruction of the porch. The bricks exactly match the original bricks on the home’s foundation, she said.

L. & J.G. Stickley Inc., the Fayetteville-based furniture company started by Stickley’s brothers Leopold and John George, bought the home in 1996. The company donated the home to the University Neighborhood Preservation Association in 2016.

Two state grants totaling $700,000 covered the $689,500 construction cost of the exterior restoration. They consisted of a $500,000 grant from state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and a $200,000 grant from New York State Homes and Community Renewal.

Other organizations donated money to pay for professional, architectural and other non-construction costs. They consisted of the Central New York Community Foundation, the William and Mary Thorpe Charitable Fund, the Arts & Crafts Society of Central New York, the New York State Council on the Arts and Preservation League of New York State, and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Fund for Historic Interiors.

The University Neighborhood Preservation Association plans to transfer the house to the Onondaga Historical Association after fundraising is completed for the interior work.

The OHA plans to restore the Craftsman-style interior and furnish it with reproductions of furniture designed by Stickley, then open it for public tours and operate it as a tourist destination and site for community events.

The project included reconstruction of the period front porch. The original porch had been removed.

Restoration of the interior of the home is next. Exterior work included structural stabilization, asbestos abatement, masonry repair and repointing, new roofing, window restoration and preservation and completion of an historically accurate paint scheme

Wood trim was repaired or replaced as part of the project. Photos by Rick Moriarty, rmoriarty@syracuse.com

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