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  • Carrie Taylor, Museum Director

(Fund) Raising the Roof!

Updated: Nov 19, 2020

Since 2012 Lippitt House Museum knew we needed to implement a plan (and raise the necessary funds) to replace the failing asphalt shingle roof. Through the generous support of individual donors, private foundations, and competitive capital grants from the state of Rhode Island, we are now able to embark on this major restoration project.

This summer, the current 1983 asphalt shingle and EPDM rubber roof is being replaced with a historically accurate metal roof based on the original design Henry Lippitt had installed in 1864. The original batten seam roof can be seen below in this 1957 photograph. (Photo credit: Historic American Buildings Survey, Laurence E. Tilley, Photographer April 1958, Library of Congress.)

Historic American Buildings Survey, Laurence E. Tilley, Photographer April 1958, Library of Congress.

Another part of part of the project is fixing the gutters and repairing the classical style cornice at the top of the building. Made of cast iron and wood, the cornice elements will be repaired, refastened, and painted to protect them from the weather.

While we have scaffolding access, we are also going to have historic finish analysis done of the paint so we can learn more about the various painting campaigns on the house and come up with an accurate color match for the new paint job.

The project started at the end of April with scaffolding installation and should be finished by the end of the August 2018. While the work is underway the museum will maintain regular summer hours: Fridays and 3rd Saturdays, 12- 4pm. Come by and check out the work.

Funding for this project was provided by the State of Rhode Island’s State Preservation Grant, Cultural Facilities Grant, The Champlin Foundation, Felicia Fund, Sachem Foundation, The 1772 Foundation and generous individual supporters.

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