HPHA was awarded a Keystone Historic Preservation Grant in 2005 in the amount of $90,000 to cover portions of the restoration of the property. This was a matching grant that was secured by a pledge from a private donor in the amount of $90,000. The project was delayed, however, when this pledge was not met and HPHA was forced to find additional sources of funds to match this grant.
The following is taken from the grant proposal and final report:
(from our grant proposal..) We plan repairs of chimneys, stucco, doors, windows and trim. The Penrose/Strawbridge House has three chimneys. The chimney that services the walk-in fireplace in the pre-1810 room and the two fireplaces in the 1830 second floor addition needs to be completely rebuilt. The chimney on the eastern façade that services the fireplace in the living room needs to be inspected and repaired. The western façade chimney stack is comprised of two chimneys. The external stack was added when the central heating system was added to the house by the Strawbridge’s in 1926. The internal chimney is original to the house and services the library fireplace. Both chimneys need to be repaired.
The restoration plan calls for the removal of post-1900 improvements, upgrades for public access and better road access. The project plans for the repair and adaptation of the exterior, the interior and preparing the site for museum use. For use as a living farm, the work includes: repair of the chimneys and stucco, gutters and downspouts, restoration of the windows and doors, removal of the Strawbridge additions, reinstallation of certain ca, 1875 features, restoration of the interior finishes, and, structural, electrical and mechanical upgrades. Additional work for a Living History Farm includes outbuilding restorations, new buildings, new bathrooms and paved parking.
The exterior portion of the project is scheduled for the second year of the five year project. The first year work is currently underway. It consists chiefly of updates to the electrical and plumbing. Caretaker, storage and HPHA office space is being created on the second and third floors. Structural improvements are being made to provide for public access to the museum areas on the first floor. Those rooms will be back-dated to the time periods being planned. They are proposed to be: 1925 library, ca. 1875 parlor, the original pre-1810 (1721?) Pen Plan cabin and ca, 1875 kitchen.
The Keystone grant request work is detailed as follows;
Items 1 thru four will take approximately five months. Items five and six will take about six months. The last item will take about three months. There will be some overlap in tasks. All work will be monitored by Herbert Levy, George Felbin, and Peter Choate
The Horsham Preservation and Historical Association has been able to complete all the items on the original grant request approved in June of 2005. We needed three six month extensions due to the difficulty in raising funds after our key donor failed to keep his pledge of $90,000. After a slow start, we were able to complete 95% of the work on the original plan. As of this point in time only some of the upper shutters are unrestored, although they are in various stages of completion. That work is scheduled for completion by volunteers this month. All the first floor shutters have been restored. The underground water conduction system and removal of the 1930’s sun room are not completed due to the need to complete archaeological work during this process. Our budget estimates were close overall, but due to one contractor completing work across multiple Keystone grant work categories, individual totals are off. Some items, such as the site signs were not budgeted by HPHA.
Essentially, the entire exterior of the house was restored and all elements sanded, primed, and painted. The stucco was repaired and painted. All wood elements were cleaned, repaired as necessary, caulked, sanded, primed and painted.
June 25, 2008 Peter J. Choate Executive Director of HPHA
The total cost of this project was $200,811. The Keystone Grant covered $90,000 of this. HPHA covered the remaining amount with funds from other sources. The project also included volunteer support which we estimate to be worth $37,000. (keystonebudgetfinaljune08.xls)