Brickyard House Diary

Update – September 7, 2010

Journey Beneath The Floorboards

As part of our detailed study to get exact costs of restoring the inside, we used special equipment to inspect the soundness of the floors and understide of the structure, finding no major problems.


Update – June 11, 2009

Phase I Complete!

The State Historical Fund has inspected and given the thumbs up to the exterior restoration of the Brickyard House. Phase I, the outside of the building, is now complete, a nice present just in time for Golden’s 150th birthday! Stay tuned in coming months as preparations for Phase 2, the interior, commence. Phase I Complete

Update – June 5, 2009

The front porch is now complete, including being painted in its original coloring. The modern railings being installed are required by building code.


Bonus Update 2 – May 14, 2009

The restored front door is now in place!


Bonus Update – May 14, 2009

Here’s the view from the revitalized front porch, from just outside the front door.


Update – May 14, 2009
The porch is taking on a more and more finished appearance, with all columns, brackets and dentils (the series of square blocks beneath the overhang edges) in place, as well as the new decorative shingles on the sides.

Update – April 29, 2009

The roof of the porch is now fully enclosed, and people can get a feel for how comfortable this may be on a hot summer afternoon.


Update – April 23, 2009

The new front columns of the porch have arrived and are in place, and work on the new porch roof has commenced. These columns have been replicated after the still remaining original rear pilasters (half columns) of the porch, which the 1920s historic photo showed were mirror images of each other.



Bonus Update – April 15, 2009

The resurrection of the front porch has begun. It started with the five brick front piers, and continues with the structural platform of the porch, as well as new front steps. A historic photograph from the 1920s has been used as one of our guides to figuring out what the missing elements of the porch looked like, along with physical evidence those elements left behind.


Update – April 15, 2009

After many years without glass, all of the windows of the Brickyard House are at last restored or replicated. These include the two rear wall windows shown here which were bricked up, as well as all the windows which needed new glass in their restored frames. These will all be covered from the outside with protective covering, until the house is to be occupied, to ensure against vandalism so the house is not deprived of its glass again.


Update – March 13, 2009

Our new roof is complete! The roof consists of rustic colored asphalt shingles complimented on the dormers (and when it gets rebuilt the porch roof sides) with decorative cedar shingles. The new roof was carefully considered by Golden Landmarks to stand up to the west winds and harsher elements this site can have.


Update – March 5, 2009

At last the new roof is being installed! Decades of wear and tear from the elements penetrated the roof and the building has been vulnerable, but with the new roof it will be fully sheltered for the first time in many years. It will be at once both historically acceptable yet more durable than either roof the house had before.


Update – February 13, 2009

Workers have started cleaning the bricks now that the masonry is well along. The cleaning brings out the building’s original beautiful colors after decades of dust and soot have covered them, and helps make the seemingly splotchety reassembled bricks look more uniform with the rest of the house. With weathering in time the bricks will look as similar to each other as they did in times past.


Bonus Update – February 7, 2009

Today both the asphalt and wood roofing layers were removed and the roof was stripped down to its original underpinnings. The roof structure, though pierced by the elements in several places, was remarkably intact, a testament to the house’s original construction despite the severe damage to each layer of roofing. The installation of our new stronger roofing has begun, enabling the house to stand up to the elements for years to come.


Update – February 7, 2009

The brickwork of the rear projection is complete! This unusual part of the building was never an addition but is an original part of the building made to appear as an addition. Although the rebuilt brickwork doesn’t match the main building as closely as originally, with weathering over time it likely will. When dismantling the walling around the narrow window opening half of its original framing was found and will be salvaged if possible.


Update – February 6, 2009

Topping Out Unseen in this way for many years, the chimneys of the Brickyard House have been fully rebuilt to their original heights, complete with their original crowns. It is likely that the harsh winds known to come to this site edited the chimneys downward over time. The larger chimney had to be completely dismantled during previous work, and was completely rebuilt now. Topping out the Brickyard House was a fitting thing to happen on the day Golden was honored as a Preserve America community at the Saving Places 2009 conference.


Update – January 23, 2009

The dismantled kitchen walls are now finished, though without the traditional “topping out” ceremony! Perhaps that should be done with the chimneys instead. At this time almost all dismantled masonry is complete, and the kitchen is nearing readiness for its new windows and door.


Update – January 16, 2009

Who Took The Porch? The porch is gone! Actually it’s not gone very far, since its dismantled components are currently lying inside the house awaiting restoration treatment before being reconstructed upon the front of the house along with new footers for a base. In the meantime, take in a view of the house that has not been seen in a century!


Update – December 29, 2008

Santa Waving Most of the windows were installed in the main house just in time for Christmas! Rumored to be an early Santa present, each window is the restored original just like the first reinstalled in November painted in the same Christmassy green. They are shielded on the outside by translucent virolite panels to prevent their getting damaged by vandals while the house continues in restoration. Elsewhere, the resurrecting brick walls of the kitchen are up to the top of the highest level of fancy shaped brick, the “quarterpipe” brick band which spans the building at the arch base level.


Update – December 9, 2008

Bricks In A Bubble The cold weather has not deterred construction at the Brickyard House at all. The workers from Building Restoration Specialties put up a plastic bubble around the northeast end of the house, draped on scaffolding and weighed down by cinder blocks, within which all is toasty warm as the Kitchen walls continue to be rebuilt. Inside the workers have all they need including the bricks, mortar, scaffolding, heat and protection from the wind. The rebuilding of these walls has a deliberate pace as workers make sure they are exactly straight and plumb for the building.


Bonus Update – November 24, 2008

The first restored window has been reinstalled in the house! Fresh out of the restoration shop of Spectrum windows, the first one to go in was the southeast front window of the place. Workers removed the original sash, restored it and placed new single-pane glass in it. A new counterweight chain mechanism was installed, as the original rope would not prove durable over time, and the chain uses the original pulley system. Both upper and lower halves of the window are operable, and for the present the upper half will be sealed shut while the lower half will be used. However, at any time in the future both halves can be enabled. The windows are painted the original beautiful shade of green the Brickyard House had, successfully lifted from the paint of the front main and screen doors. The remaining (only 3 left!) original glass panes of the house, all in the upper dormers, will remain while new glass is added where the panes are missing. Most windows will return in time for the holidays!


Update – November 24, 2008


The cloned bricks have arrived! Created using ground up matter of broken bricks cast in a mix using special rubber molds made of the originals by Chris Wolfe, these bricks were sealed today and began to be laid atop the foundation of the Brickyard House. These are the half-dome shaped water table bricks, and are the first new Golden bricks to be created in 45 years. They are the first of our fancy shaped bricks to be made in many more years than that.


Update – November 4, 2008

Nearly all the arches have been repaired on each side of the building. Their cracks are repaired by taking out the bricks surrounding the cracks and re-placing the bricks just a little further apart to make up for the building’s settling over time. It’s barely noticeable by the untrained eye, and adds yet another way the building’s architecture can fool you!


Update – November 3, 2008

Repointing of the foundation of the main house is approaching completion. Workers are continuing to repair the mortar on the walls and arches of the house, while the window frames are continuing to be stripped. The windows have by now been taken away to be restored.


Halloween Update – October 31, 2008

The spooky old house was heavily haunted by the living today as workers began work on the windows. This workman is taking out destabilized bricks and repointing the arch of the southeast window and will put the bricks back. Other workers around the house were stripping paint (at least two layers, green and white) from the window frames.


Update – October 30, 2008

Rebuilding began with the first courses of brick laid for the resurrected northeast wall. It has proceeded up to the level of the water table brick, awaiting replica clones of this shaped brick.


Update – October 29, 2008

The remaining unstable portion of the northeast end of the house was dismantled brick by brick, just as its eastern wall had been taken down earlier. With the help of photographs taken in the early 2000s these walls will be put back just as they were before. The eastern foundation has been repointed and awaits rebuilding of the missing walls upon it. All windows (such as they are without glass) have been removed, to be taken by the Spectrum window folks for restoration and new glass.


Update – October 21, 2008

The construction work on Phase 1, restoring the outside, has started! Today the frame shed addition to the house was demolished, revealing the original rear wall of the house with all of its openings, original, bricked up and modified.

Rear Wall

Contact Golden Landmarks Association at 303-279-1236, or email us!

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