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William Pitcher Farmstead HSR

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WILLIAM PITCHER FARMSTEAD

Historic Structure Report

Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


CONTENTS

____________________________________________________________________________

INTRODUCTION

HISTORY

The Schuyler Patent and the Palatines 3

The Pitchers, Generations I-III 9

The Pitchers, Generations IV-VII 13

The Last 73 Years 19

DESCRIPTIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The Site 20

The House

Exterior 22

Recommendations 31

Interior 32

Recommendations 97

Green Renovation Recommendations 98

APPENDICES

I

II

III

IV

V

VI

VII

VIII

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Deed Chronology and Maps

Pitcher Genealogy

Pitcher Population Schedule

Drawings

Existing 2004

Structural Evolution

Masonry Analysis

Wood Analysis

Finishes Analysis

Wallpaper Samples


INTRODUCTION

____________________________________________________________________________

The William Pitcher farmhouse is located near the hamlet of Upper Red Hook, New York

and was likely built between 1725 and 1746, but certainly prior to 1768. On May 25

of that year, the property was deeded to William Pitcher by his father and referred to

as “the farm now in the possession of the said William Bitcher(sic).” 1 It is an important

domestic building for the fact that is one of the oldest surviving examples of timberframed

Dutch/German vernacular architecture in the area. The house is set back 250

yards from the north side of Pitcher Lane, a quiet east-west road, a mile and a half long

connecting Route 9, known prior to 1776 as the King’s Highway, to County Route 79,

formerly referred to as the road to Red Hook Landing.

Members of the Pitcher family lived in the house continuously until the later years of

the 19th century. After that it became an incidental structure. The farmhouse

remained in the family, likely a lodging for seasonal workers on the large fruit farm,

until 1942. The larger farm property was sold seven times in the second half of the

20th century, becoming a dairy enterprise by the 1970s. The William Pitcher house

was intermittently occupied, most recently by the herdsman of Linden Farms and his

family. Since 2000, the farmhouse has been vacant, home to raccoons and occasional

vandals. The roof, which is at least 100 years old, has kept the weather out, but there

are some failures in the building envelope.

1

Dutchess County Clerk’s Office, Poughkeepsie, New York


This historic structure report is intended to document the farmhouse, should it prove

to be beyond repair; or to serve as an owner’s manual to assist in restoration, should

the current owner choose such an undertaking.

The information in this report was collected and assembled between February 2014

and April 2015 in fulfillment of the capstone project requirement for the University of

Massachusetts Master of Science in Historic Preservation program. The process has

involved investigation of deeds, wills, and church records; census and agricultural

schedules; newspapers, maps, and tax rolls; structural assessment and analysis of

bricks, mortar, wood, plaster, finishes, and coverings. It has also involved vagrant and

large animal exclusion. Additional information about this building will certainly be

uncovered through future physical exploration and further sleuthing through human and

institutional repositories.

The William Pitcher Farmstead is historically significant for its association with early

settlement, architectural patterns, and economic development of this area of the

Hudson Valley. The amount of local interest that this project has generated to date

bespeaks an enthusiasm that has been encouraging.

2


HISTORY

THE SCHUYLER PATENT AND THE PALATINES 1688-1725

The primary interest of the Dutch in New Netherland was the collection of beaver pelts.

As such they had established nearly evenly spaced trading posts along Hudson’s River

at New Amsterdam (Manhattan), Wiltwyck (Kingston), and Beverwyck (Albany), but

the rest of the colony was essentially a howling wilderness. The Treaty of Breda, which

ended the Anglo-Dutch War, confirmed the blood-less conquest of New Netherland by

the English on July 21, 1667. Colonial Governor Thomas Dongan was tasked with

settling the land between Manhattan and Albany in order to generate revenue, as well

2

as to secure the Crown’s claim to it. To that end, he granted patents of large tracts of

land to entrepreneurial and well-connected men of means, and turned over to them the

responsibility for populating and clearing the land, hoping that self-interest and the

promise of profit would provide adequate motivation.

Pieter Schuyler, the first mayor of Albany, having first purchased land from the natives,

was granted a patent to it by Governor Dongan on June 2, 1688. This patent was

confirmed and recorded in 1704. The 22,400 acres was thus described,

“Situate, lying and being on the east side of Hudson’s River in Dutchess County, over

against Magdalene Island, beginning at a certain creek called Metambesem, thence running

easterly to the southmost part of a certain meadow called Tanquashqueick, and from that

meadow easterly to a certain small lake or pond called Waraughkameek; from thence northerly

so far till upon a due east and west line it reaches over against the Sawyer’s creek, from thence

2 “Colonial Land Grants in Dutchess County, N.Y. A Case Study in Settlement,” William P.

McDermott, The Hudson Valley Regional Review, September 1986, Volume 3, Number 2

3


due west to the Hudson’s river aforesaid, and from thence southerly along the said river to the

said creek called Metambesem” 3

The Schuyler patent was bounded to the north by the Livingston Manor, 160,000 acres

awarded to Robert Livingston in 1686; by the Little Nine Partners patent to the east;

Dutchman Henry Beekman’s Rhinebeck patent on the south; and the Hudson River

along the western edge (MAP 1).

Although a patent for Kipsburgh Manor, the present hamlet of Rhinecliff in the town of

Rhinebeck, had been granted to Kingston Dutchmen Adrian Roosa, Jan Elting, and

Hendrick and Jacobus Kip by Governor Dongan June 2, 1688, on account of Henry

Beekman’s considerable influence and enthusiasm for development, the Kipsburgh

patent was subsumed by Beekman’s Rhinebeck patent, which was confirmed by

Governor Cornbury in 1703.

In 1689 Peter Schuyler sold approximately one half of the north quarter of his patent

bordering Livingston Manor to Harme Van Gansevoort, an Albany brewer, who

transferred the land in 1704 to Harme Janse Knickerbacker. In 1722 Peter Schuyler

had the north quarter of his patent surveyed and divided into 13 lots; seven were

granted to the Knickerbacker heirs, the other six were sold to Captain Nicholas

Hoffman of Kingston. The remaining three-quarters of Schuyler’s patent had already

been divided into six lots of approximately 3,000 acres each and sold in pairs as

4

described in a deed dated February 11, 1717/18. The southern pair, bordering Henry

Beekman’s patent, were sold to Tierck DeWitt of Ulster County; Joachem Staats of

Rensselaerwyck and Barent Van Benthuysen of Dutchess County bought two lots each

3 Documentary History of Rhinebeck, Edward M. Smith, Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, NY, 1881

p.22

4

History of Dutchess County, James H. Smith, D. Mason & Co., Syracuse, NY, 1882, p.173

4


5

(MAP 3). By 1725, Tierk DeWitt had sold his lots to Henry Beekman, and the heirs of

Staats sold their land to Barent Van Benthuysen and his sons: Pieter, Jacob, Abraham,

6

and Gerrit; and his nephew Andries Heremanse(sic)(MAP 5).

The Van Benthuysen and Heermanse families, who moved across the Hudson from

Kingston, were related by marriage. Three Van Wagenen sisters: Jannetje, Annatjen

and Neeltje, daughters of Gerrit Aartsen, one of the original patentees of Rhinebeck,

married Barent Van Benthuysen, and brothers Hendricus and Andries Heermanse

respectively. Jannetje and Barent Van Benthuysen married in Kingston in 1701 and

had Gerrit, Jan, Catryntje, Anna, Peter, Jacob, and Abraham between 1702 and 1718.

Annatjen and Hendricus Heermanse settled in Rhinebeck to raise their six children on

land that would become “Ellerslie,” the estate of Levi P. Morton. Neeltje and Andries

Heermanse had fourteen children between 1711 and 1737: Jan, Engeltie, Jacob,

Annatje, Janneka, Clara, Gerrit, Petrus, Hendricus, Catrina, Wilhelmus, Nicholas, Phillipus,

7

and Abraham. The Van Benthuysens and Heermanses, along with the Hoffmans and

Vosburgs, who also moved from Kingston around the same time, intermarried and

populated their purchase.

In the census of 1714, there were 67 heads of households, 445 residents total,

including 29 slaves, recorded in what was then Dutchess County; from the north line of

Westchester County to the Roelof-Jansen Kill (creek) in what is now Columbia County.

By the first tax assessment in 1723, there were 97 households in the North Ward alone

8

(MAP 2).

5 referenced in a deed dated April 3, 1720 between heirs of Barent Staats and Pieter, Jacob,

and Abraham Van Benthuysen, recorded November 27, 1744

6 Dutchess County Clerk’s Office, Liber 10: 137, April 1, 1747 between Pieter, Jacob, Abraham,

and Barent Van Benthuysen along with Andries Heremanse; and Gerrit Van Benthuysen

7

8

Documentary History of Rhinebeck, E.M. Smith, Rhinebeck, New York, 1881, p.35

Historic Old Rhinebeck, Howard H. Morse, Pontico Printery, Tarrytown, New York, 1908, p.421

5


This population increase was due in large part to the arrival in 1710 of an indentured

workforce from the Palatinate region of southwestern Germany, sent to New York by

Queen Anne at the invitation of Robert Livingston. This group, referred to as “the

Palatines” or “the Poor Palatines,” had left their homes in the Rhine Valley en masse as

conditions deteriorated. French troops, engaged in the War of Spanish Succession,

went wilding through the southwest in 1706. The brutal winter of 1708 and the

instability of living in an area of tiny, ill-managed principalities made for a restive

population. In 1706 a Lutheran minister from Wurttemberg named Joshua Kocherthal

wrote a promotional pamphlet called A Complete and Detailed Report of the Renowned

District of Carolina Located in English America. In 1708 Kocherthal and fifty followers

went to London where they secured passage to the colonies by claiming to be victims

of attacks by the French. This successful gambit, although they had been taken to New

York rather than Carolina, encouraged Kocherthal to return to the Palatinate and try

again. Kocherthal enhanced his pamphlet with even more glowing descriptions of the

colonies, so much so that it was referred to as “The Golden Book,” exciting such

9

interest that three new editions were printed in 1709. Kocherthal’s pamphlet implied

that Queen Anne was eager to have her colonies settled and would be happy to provide

passage to anyone willing to go. This unsupported claim caused a stampede of 13,000

souls to London, where encampments were hastily set up at Camberwell and

Blackheath. Public sentiment turned against the immigrants as their numbers

increased. In December 1709 Robert Hunter, the recently appointed Governor of New

York, proposed a plan that would both benefit the Crown and remove the Palatines

from London.

The British Navy relied on trade with Sweden for “naval stores”(tar and pitch) that

were necessary for waterproofing the ropes and sealing the hulls of ships. For financial

and security reasons, this was not an ideal situation. Hunter suggested that the

9 Becoming German: The 1709 Palatine Migration to New York, Philip Otterness, Cornell

University Press, Ithaca and London, 2006, p.27

6


Palatines could be settled in New York along the Hudson River and would serve the dual

purpose of producing naval stores from the forests there AND their presence would

serve as a deterrent against the French. Hunter’s plan was that the Palatines would

repay the Queen for the cost of their transport and early settlement from the profit

from this enterprise, and, once their debts were repaid, each person would be granted

40 acres of land.

Three thousand Palatines set sail for New York in April 1710, 4,000 were given

passage back to Rotterdam, a few hundred remained in London, and the rest dispersed

to Ireland and Jamaica. Due to casualties in transit, 2,200 Palatines arrived in New

10

York City, which at the time had only 6,000 inhabitants.

During their long journey from their homes, the Palatines had become a tight group.

Adversity had broken down regional, religious, and material differences. Losing such a

large portion of their number on the voyage had left many adults single and many

children orphans. Since Hunter’s plan had a narrow profit margin to begin with, he was

not inclined to provide for those who would not be contributing to the naval stores

project. He arranged for orphans and children of widows to be apprenticed out as

11

young as three or four. The remarriage rate among the Palatines was high due to the

importance of each member of the nuclear family for the survival of the group. This

intermarriage further cemented the bonds among the group, who were also bound by

their dissatisfaction with the naval stores enterprise. The average age of the Palatines

was 35. They had left their homeland on the promise of freedom from serfdom in the

bloated duchies of petty princes. They wanted to be farmers, not to live as servants,

dependent upon the whims and wishes of others.

10

11

Otterness, p.81

Otterness, p.81

7


In September 1710, Governor Hunter purchased 6,000 acres of land on the Hudson

River, 100 miles north of New York City, within the manor of Robert Livingston. The

trees from which the Palatines would be deriving the naval stores were a few miles

inland, also on Livingston’s land. This arrangement had many benefits for Livingston:

the Palatines would be clearing and improving his land, which had been previously

unsettled; Livingston would have right to all trees cut down; and he was given the

contract to provide the Palatines with bread and beer. Three camps were established

on the west side of the Hudson and four situated on the east side, south of the Roelof-

Jansen Kill: Haysbury, named for Hunter’s wife, Lady Hay; Queensbury and Annsbury,

both named for Queen Ann; and Hunterstown.

While the Palatines’ resentment was growing, Governor Hunter was running into trouble

from England. The naval stores project was far from reducing the British navy’s

dependence on Sweden, having not produced even one barrel of tar. Parliament

refused to reimburse Hunter for the money he had put out for the support of the

Palatines. In early September of 1712, the naval stores endeavor was shut down and

the Palatine project was abandoned.

Aside from his early arrangement with Harme Van Gansevoort, Pieter Schuyler appears

to have been content to let the rest of his patent languish. In contrast, Henry

Beekman was eager to get his land settled and actively encouraged the families of

12

disenfranchised German immigrants to rent or purchase farms from him. Culturally,

the Dutch and the Palatines were quite similar, having come from an area sharing a

border. Thirty-five Palatine families took Beekman up on his offer and moved to

Monterey, renaming the larger area Rhine (for their homeland) beck (as a nod to

Beekman). A union church, which served both Lutheran and Dutch Reformed

congregations, was established in 1716. Lutheran minister and author of “The Golden

12 Frank Hasbrouck ed., The History of Dutchess County New York, Chap. XXIX, S.A. Matthiew,

Poughkeepsie, NY, 1909

8


Book,” Joshua Kocherthal, who had sailed from London with the Palatines and

ministered to them at the camps, shared the pulpit with pastor Johann Fredrick Haeger,

who had served the Reformed congregation. The Lutherans and the Dutch Reformed

congregations shared the church until 1723, when the Lutherans built a stone church,

St. Peter’s, approximately half a mile north on the Post Road.

As of 1718, there were still 91 Palatine families, 359 people living on the east camp

land in what had become known as Germantown. Apparently they were holding out for

title to the land that had been promised them by Queen Anne. In 1724 Palatine

settlers Jacob Sharpe and Christopher Hagadorn petitioned the Provincial Council on

behalf of the 63 families that had been willing to remain, to be granted title to the

land. Cadwallader Colden, the Surveyor-General at the time, supported this petition and

the patent was granted on August 26, 1724. 13

THE PITCHERS, GENERATIONS I-III

Johannes Hermann Betzer (alternately written as Bitzer, Pitsier, Pitzer, and finally

Pitcher) and his wife, Elsen Maria Franz, were born in Hachenburg, in the Rhineland-

Palatinate region. They were 40 and 43 respectively when they arrived in New York in

July 1710 with their seven children. Arriving on the eighth of Governor Hunter’s ten

ships, the Betzers were settled at Annsbury, the most northern of the east camps,

located on the Hudson River at what is now considered North Germantown. Johannes

Betzer was among those who volunteered to join the Walker Expedition to Quebec in

14

1711 to fight in “Queen Anne’s War.” As of 1717, Johannes Hermann and Elsen

13 History of Columbia County, New York, Captain Franklin Ellis, Everts and Ensign,

Philadelphia, 1878

14 Documentary History of New York,Vol.III, E.B. O’Callahan, Weed, Parsons & Co. Public

Printers, Albany, New York, 1850, p. 571-572

9


15

Maria were still living in Annsbury with two of their children. In 1724 he was among

the signers of the petition submitted to the Provincial Council as being willing to stay if

land were finally granted.

Johannes and Elsen Maria had three sons: Peter, born 1697; Adam, born 1702; and

Johan Theiss, born 1708. Apparently Johann Theiss was the first of them to move

16

south. Early tax records for Rhinebeck place him there in 1732. In 1740, Cadwallader

Colden surveyed the land that had been granted to the Palatines as a result of their

petition in 1724; the resulting map shows Adam and Peter Pitcher each owning two

17

parcels of land (MAP 4). Perhaps they had inherited this land from their father. Adam

Pitcher held onto his Germantown land and purchased 123 acres from Nicholas

Hoffman in the north portion of the Schuyler patent in 1746 where he established his

homestead farm. He also acquired land in the Little Nine Partners patent; in 1747 he

bought 2/3 of small Lot 8 from the Van Benthuysens and Andries Heermanse, just east

of small Lot 7, which Peter Pitcher had purchased the year before.

On March 17, 1746 Peter Pitcher, age 49, purchased Lot 7 from the Van

Benthuysens and Andries Heermanse for the sum of 550 pounds current money of the

province of New York “together with all and singular the houses barnes buildings lands

meadows pastures commons feedings trees woods underwoods profits advantages and

with all the appurtenances to the said lott number seven.” 18

Peter Pitcher’s neighbor to the west, on Lot 6, was Andries Heermanse himself. It is

possible that, since reference is made to existing structures “houses” and “barnes” in

15 “Ulrich Simmendinger Register, 1717”, http://immigrantships.net/v4/1700v4/

simmendinger17100100A_L.html, also at New York Public Library Rare Books Room

16 Dutchess County New York Tax Lists 1718-1787, Clifford M. Buck, Kinship (Press),

Rhinebeck, New York, 1991

17

18

see Colden map

Dutchess County Clerk’s Office, Deeds; Liber 2 Page 349, 17 March 1746

10


the deed, Peter and his family had already been living on the property as tenants

before the purchase, and that more than one house was on the property prior to 1746.

The Heermanse homestead farm, located in the northeast quadrant of that parcel is

listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is noted for being a rare example of

an 18th-century (circa 1733 or 1745) stone farmhouse. The Heermanse farm is on a

road that connected the King’s Highway (now Route 9) to the Hudson River at

Hoffman’s Landing, which was subsequently known as Cantine’s Landing, Upper Red

Hook Landing, and now is called Tivoli. In 1749, Pieter Pitser (sic) is listed as having

been the overseer of the road to “Hoffman’s Landing,” which is now County Route 78

(Kerley’s Corners Road). 19 This information places the original Pitcher farm to the east

of the Heermance Farm, near the intersection with the King’s Highway (MAP 6). In

1719, Peter Pitcher married Anna Catherine Phillips and they had Maria Catherine,

Wilhelm, Magdalena, Gertraudt, Christina, Elizabeth, and Adam between 1720 and

1738. Wilhelm was baptised at the union church in Rhinebeck in 1725. 20

At the age of 71 on 13 May 1768, Peter Pitser (sic) divided his property in half, north

and south (MAP 7). He deeded his own dwelling house and 275 acres to his younger son

Adam. Two weeks later Adam, only 30 years old but “weak in body but of sound and

perfect mind,” willed all his property to his wife, Anna Maria Richter, but gave his father

continued use of half of the farm that had been deeded over to him, and refers to the

arrangement that they have made regarding said farm. He also instructed that his

three daughters (Elizabeth, Gertien, and Catherine) be sent to school to learn “reading,

writing and sewing.” In this instrument, Adam Pitcher also makes reference to his

21

“negro girl named Flora” and to his indentured boy, Fred.

19 H.H. Morse, Historic Old Rhinebeck, Pocantico Printery, Flocker & Hicks, Tarrytown-on-

Hudson, NY, 1908

20

21

“Dutch Selected Reformed Church VItal Records, 1660-1926,” Holland Society of New York

Dutchess County Surrogate Court, will of Adam Pitcher, probated 12 September 1768

11


The southern half of the property Peter deeded to his older son William “in

consideration of the natural love and affection which he hath and beareth to his

22

son...also for the sum of five shillings.” The deed specifies “the parcel of land...or

farm now in the possession of William Pitcher.” In 1768 William Pitcher was 43 years

old. According to the Rhinebeck tax records, he had been paying property taxes there

23

since 1753.

William Pitcher married Magdalena Donsbach on 5 November 1748 at the Germantown

Reformed Church, when he was 23 and she was 21. The first of their children, Peter,

was born in 1750 and baptized at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Rhinebeck.

Subsequent children of William Pitcher were baptized at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in

what is now Red Hook. They did not precisely follow the tradition of the Dutch and

Germans of naming the first son after the paternal grandfather, the first daughter after

the maternal grandmother, second son after the maternal grandfather, and second

daughter after the maternal grandmother. After Peter (named for Peter Pitcher) came

Margaretha in 1752 (for Margaretha Scheffer), Magdalena in 1754, then Wilhelm in

1756, Heinrich in 1762 (for Heinrich Donsbach), and Catherina in 1764 (for Catherina

Phillips). It is not clear what happened to Magdalena Donsbach.

After Adam Pitcher’s death in 1768, his widow, Anna Maria Richter married his brother,

William Pitcher. Together they had Elizabeth in 1771 (named for Elizabeth Stahl), Philip

in 1774 (sponsored by Philip Staats and Anna Maria Benner), John W. in 1776 (named

for Johannes RIchter), Anna in 1779 (sponsored by Hendrick Bender and Annatjen

24

Richter), and Jacob in 1781 (sponsored by Jacob Richter and Magdalena Phillips).

The first US Census data, from 1790 has nine people in the household of William

22

23

Dutchess County Clerk’s Office, Deeds, “Peter Bitcher” to “William Bitcher,” 25 May 1768

Dutchess County New York Tax Lists 1718-1787, Clifford M. Buck, Kinship (Press),

Rhinebeck, New York, 1991

24

“Dutch Selected Reformed Church Vital Records, 1660-1926,” Holland Society of New York

12


Pitcher: four free white males, one over 16 years old and three under 16; three free

white females; and two slaves. The free white males would have been William and his

sons, Philip, John W., and Jacob; the free white females, Anna Maria Richter, Elizabeth,

25

and Anna.

The Pitchers, Generations IV-VII

Before William Pitcher died in 1800, he willed that his property “all that farm which I

got from my father, Peter Pitcher, on which I now live and reside, together with the

houses, and buildings standing on the same” go to his three youngest sons: Philip (26),

John W. (24), and Jacob (19). William Pitcher instructed that the remainder of his

estate be divided between all of his children: Peter, Hendrick, Philip, John, Margaret,

Catherine, Elisabeth, and Annatie, and the children of his son Wilhelmus. Jacob

Pitcher’s health or habits were questionable based on the following line in his father’s

will: “…if in case my son Jacob should die before he can receive the estate hereby

divised to him… .”

At the time of his death, William Pitcher’s house and farm were valued at $4,370 and

his personal property at $824. In 1800, after their father’s death, Philip and John W.

were jointly assessed (no mention of Jacob) for the house and farm valued at $4,370

and personal property, presumably farm equipment and livestock, of $257. Their tax

bill was $8.09.

John W. and Philip Pitcher owned their father’s farm jointly, but apparently lived

separately on it. The 1800 US Census lists John W. and Philip Pitcher each as heads of

households. A map surveyed by Alexander Thompson in 1797 (MAP 9) shows five

houses on the north side of Pitcher Lane and a red building labeled “Martin’s Inn.” The

25 1790 United States Census, s.v. William Pitcher, Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

13


uildings, matched with the names on the 1800 census are, from west to east,

Nicholas Hoffman, William Vredenbergh (sic), John W. Pitcher, Philip Pitcher, Ebenezer

Punderson, and Henry Martin. A map surveyed in 1799 by Philip Reichert confirms the

properties at the west end of Pitcher Lane (MAP 10). John W. Pitcher had married

Catherine Kip on 4 November 1797 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, and in 1800 they

shared their household with a free white female between 10-16, probably a servant; a

26

free white female under 10; their infant daughter Helen; and two slaves. Philip

Pitcher had married Catherine Wilson around 1796, and in 1800 they were living with a

free white male (servant) between 16 and 26; two young daughters, Elizabeth and

27

Anna Maria; and two slaves.

Rhinebeck tax records, available through 1803, assess John W. and Philip jointly for the

28

house and farm. In 1806, the brothers divided the farm north and south based on a

survey by their neighbor Nathan Beckwith (MAP 8), but the division was not recorded

until 1860, after both Philip and John W. were dead.

In 1810 the household of John W. Pitcher and Catherine Kipp Pitcher was comprised of

themselves, their sons John Henry (5), Abraham (3), and William (0), their daughter

Helen (9), two white male and one female laborers between 10 and 15 years old, and

29

two slaves, for a total of eleven people.

26 1800 United States Census, s.v. John W. Pitcher, Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

27 1800 United States Census, s.v. Philip Pitcher, Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

28 “Assessment of all the Real and Personal Estate in the Town of Rhinebeck” 1799-1803,

Series B0950, New York State Archives, Albany, New York

29 1810 United States Census, s.v. John W. Pitcher, Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

14


John W. Pitcher is always referred to with his middle initial because a John Pitcher, born

in 1750 and distantly related, also lived in Dutchess County in the nearby town of

Northeast.

By the early 19th century, Pitcher Lane had become a major thoroughfare between

Upper Red Hook and beyond into Northeast and Connecticut and also the landings on

the Hudson River at Barrytown and Tivoli. The Hudson had always been a link to the

steady demand of New York City for produce, livestock, and grains. Robert Fulton

perfected the steamboat in 1807, which made trade on the river more reliable and

efficient. John W. Pitcher had inherited a large agricultural operation and increased its

acreage by purchasing land that had belonged to his grandfather Peter. According the

1816 Agricultural Schedule, the assessed value of John W. Pitcher’s farm was $6,700

and he had personal property of $400. Until the opening of the Erie Canal in 1825,

farmers in the Hudson Valley, along with taking care of their own and local needs, grew

wheat for production as well as potatoes, onions, and other sturdy crops that could be

easily shipped. Competition from the West, along with an insect blight in the

mid-1830s, pushed local farmers toward sheep, which supplied the woolen mills on the

nearby White Clay Kill and Sawkill creeks, and fruit, which the loamy soil of the area

proved well suited.

Along with being a successful farmer, John W. Pitcher was an active member of the

Upper Red Hook community. He served in the New York State Militia, attaining the rank

30

of First Lieutenant in 1807 and Captain in 1812. Along with his brother Philip,

Nicholas Hoffman, Nathan Beckwith and other neighbors, John W. contributed to the

founding of the Mountain View Academy in 1822, with the following statement:

Believing that well conducted schools affording the opportunity of moral and literary

improvement to our youth are in every respect highly beneficial, and desirous of establishing a

Classical School or Academy in the village of Red Hook, which is intended to place under the

30 Military Minutes of the Council of Appointment of the State of New York, 1783-1821 Vol.I, J.B.

Lyon, State Printer-New York, 1901, p.939 and Vol. II, p.1324

15


direction of twelve trustees to be annually elected by the subscribers to the Academy in which

school it is intended that reading, writing, arithmetic, English grammar, surveying, navigation,

geography, public speaking together with the Latin and Greek languages shall be taught and a

scrupulous attention to the moral and religious habits of the students shall be observed: Under

these impressions and desirous of public utility, we, the subscribers promise to pay to the

Trustees of Red Hook Academy the sums affixed to our respective names to be appropriated for

the object above mentioned. 31

The Pitchers—John W. and Catherine, Philip and Catherine, all of their children and their

extended families—were members of St. John’s Reformed Church, which was built in

1787 as an adjunct to the Red Church at the Lower Red Hook Landing (now Tivoli) in

response to the developing settlement at Upper Red Hook. The new church was

referred to as “the Church at the Road” because it was located at the Post Road. John

W. and Catherine became members of St. John’s Low Dutch Reformed Church in Upper

Red Hook in 1806, transferring their allegiance from St. Paul’s. John W. became a

deacon in 1807 and their youngest son, born in 1812, was named Andrew Kittle

Pitcher after the long serving minister, who was also instrumental in the founding of

the Academy, Andrew Kittle.

The Pitcher household reached a peak population of 14 in 1820 with John W.,

Catherine, John H., Abraham, William, Andrew, Helen, one white male over 45 (a laborer

or father-in-law), one free white female 26-44, in addition to Catherine (a servant or

other relative), one slave male under 14, one slave male over 45, and two

32

“foreigners.”

Prior to 1850, only the name of the head of household is listed on the US Census, and

each census records slightly different data. Between 1790 and 1820, individuals were

31 St. John’s Reformed Church archives, printed in Upper Red Hook: An American Crossroad,

Roger M. Leonard, published by the author, 2012, p.70

32 1820 United States Census, s.v. John W. Pitcher, Red Hook, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

16


noted based on gender, age, race, and free or slave status. Slavery was outlawed for

all in 1827, but in the 1830 census only gender and age were recorded. In the 1840

record, gender, age, and race were noted. After 1820, the Pitcher household gradually

declined in size: son John Henry became a minister after attending Union College in

Schenectady and New Brunswick Seminary; Abraham acquired land on the south side of

Pitcher Lane to farm and built or moved into an existing house there; William graduated

from Williams College and Princeton Seminary, becoming a minister as well

33

; Andrew

K., the youngest son, stayed on his father’s farm. In 1830 there were eight people

34

living in John W. Pitcher’s house. In 1840 there were only six: John W., his wife

Catherine, their son Andrew, a 15-20 year-old female (white), a ‘free colored male’

10-24, and a ‘free colored female 24-36.’ 35

Beginning in 1851 the Hudson River Railroad became the mode of transportation for

shipping farm goods to market in New York City and abroad. The river landings at

Tivoli and Barrytown became station stops. Red Hook became known for its apple

orchards. In 1855 the town production was 14,873 bushels; by 1865 it was up to

36

38,230 . On the 1850 Gillette map (MAP 11), the farms along Pitcher Lane from west

to east belonged to Cornelius Elmendorf, who had married John W. Pitcher’s niece Anna

Maria; John W. Pitcher; William W. Pitcher, son of J.W.P.’s brother Philip (who had died

in 1844); and on the south side of the road John W.’s son Abraham. In 1850,

according to the census, John W. Pitcher shared the house with his son Andrew (38),

Andrew’s wife Mary Ann Hoffman (36), their children Laura (5), and William (2), and

Susan Hoffman, Mary Ann Hoffman Pitcher’s mother (66). John W. had by then

33 Upper Red Hook: An American Crossroad, Roger M. Leonard, published by the author, 2012,

p.60

34 1830 United States Census, s.v. John W. Pitcher, Red Hook, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

35 1840 United States Census, s.v. John W. Pitcher, Red Hook, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

36

Benedict Seidman, “Agriculture in Red Hook,” Bard College Senior Project, 1940

17


transferred his farm to his son. Andrew Pitcher’s property was valued at $7,000 and

his farm implements at $200. In 1850 he had 78 acres of improved land and 10 acres

of wood lot; 2 horses, 6 milk cows, 1 other type of cattle, 22 sheep, 5 swine, all valued

at $422. He was producing rye, corn, and oats. After John W. Pitcher’s death in

1859, Andrew lived in the farmhouse with his wife, five children, one 28-year-old

37

female servant, and a laborer, John Millham (50). The Agricultural Production

Schedule of 1860 shows that Andrew Pitcher had increased his yield of rye from 260

bushels to 300, and doubled his oat crop since 1850; but his Indian corn production

decreased by 75% . He had also replaced all of his sheep with swine.

Andrew K. Pitcher’s cousin and neighbor to the east, William Wilson Pitcher, died in

1864 and his one-fifth portion of the original Peter Pitcher farm was sold to P.H. Coon.

Abraham Pitcher died in 1874 without a will. Six months later a fire destroyed his

house. Abraham’s wife, Eliza Sanderson Pitcher, and their children sold his piece of the

original Peter Pitcher land on the north side of Pitcher Lane in addition to the land he

had purchased on the south side to Francis and Margaret Elting.

On the north side of Pitcher Lane, to the west of Andrew Pitcher’s house, the Eltings

built a large, ornate Victorian house with a cupola. In 1881, Andrew Pitcher sold all of

his land to the Elting’s son, Henry Snyder Elting. One year later, Andrew Pitcher’s

daughter, Sarah Jansen Pitcher, married Henry Elting. Andrew Pitcher lived in the old

house until his death in 1885.

When Margaret Elting died in 1905, she willed all of the land that had belonged to her

and her late husband to her son. Henry Elting farmed this land, growing primarily fruit

and grains until his death in 1927. Henry Elting and Sarah J. Pitcher’s daughter

Florence and son-in-law Ezra Cookingham continued farming until 1942 when they sold

37 1860 United States Census, s.v. Andrew K. Pitcher, Red Hook, Dutchess County, New York,

accessed through ancestry.com

18


the enterprise to Victory Farms Inc. based in New York City. Intact through several

transfers, the property was sold in 1955 to Robert G. Greig, who in 1942 had

purchased and was farming the land next door that had belonged to Philip Pitcher. For

a short time, the south half of Peter Pitcher’s original farm was reassembled.

The Past 73 Years

The William Pitcher farm was sold again several times between 1955 and 2000.

Six generations of Pitchers and their descendants lived within the original 550 acres

purchased 200 years before. Andrew was the last Pitcher to live in the old farmhouse.

After his death it was insconsistently inhabited by seasonal or tenant farmers. In each

census after 1880, the names in the house are different and they are all listed as farm

laborers and renters.

The house has been empty since 2000, but the land is under cultivation, providing feed

crops and produce for local consumption and farmers’ markets as far south as

Manhattan and into southwestern Connecticut.

Other than the one-story circa 1900 addition, which may have been added as a second

kitchen to make the house more comfortable for two families at a time, and the later

insertion of a bathroom, no major alterations have been made to the house since

before 1800.

The Pitcher house is an excellent example of an early to mid-18th-century Dutch

building with a Palatine overlay, which was common in this area. For the sake of study,

neglect has been its salvation.

19


DESCRIPTIONS

THE SITE

The William Pitcher Farm is set back 250

yards from the north side of Pitcher

Lane, approximately three miles north

of the village of Red Hook. Pitcher Lane

is a quiet east-west road, a mile and a

half long connecting Route 9 (formerly

known as the Post Road or the King’s

Highway), to County Route 79, also

known as Budds Corners Road, formerly

referred to as the road to Red Hook

Landing. The house faces due south

with a line of large locust trees marking

the route that the driveway followed

years ago.

The current driveway continues past the

house on the east side to a barn

complex. The core of this structure is a

mid-19th century, square-rule Englishstyle

hay barn, built into a bank, with a

dry-laid bluestone foundation that has

remnants of limewash or parging on the

Aerial photo of the William Pitcher farm property,

house and barns in south-east corner, 2014.

(http://geoaccess.co.dutchess.ny.us)

inside. On the north side there is a late

19th-early-20th century addition that housed calves. Attached to this section is a

concrete silo. Beneath the hay barn, and extending out from the west

20


side is a mid-20th-century concrete-block

framed dairy barn. This section has a concrete

floor with gutters, remnants of stanchions, and

a dairy room. The last addition is a two-bay

structure coming off the south gable end of the

hay barn. One bay is for storage and the other

appears to have been a common room for

laborers with lockers and a table and chairs. To

the east of this complex are a free-standing

horse shed and a corn crib.

The house and barns are located at the southeast

corner of an 86-acre parcel of land, nearly half of which

is under cultivation. The property is bordered to the

north, east, and west primarily by open agricultural land.

The southern boundary of the property is Pitcher Lane.

Carved out of the southern edge of the property to the

west of the WIlliam Pitcher farmhouse is a three-acre

parcel of land with a large Italianate Victorian house on

it that dates to 1875. This lot was part of the Pitcher

family property until the mid-20th century.

21


DESCRIPTION +

CONDITION ASSESSMENT

EXTERIOR

The Pitcher house is a one-and-one-half story, five-fenestration bay, Dutch-framed

wooden structure with a moderate to steeply pitched gable roof that runs parallel to

the main facade, a small, one-story addition off the west gable end, and an ell that

extends from the north side of the east end. The main house and the ell sit on

foundations of dry-laid bluestone, and both are clad in cement-asbestos siding.

There is an inboard brick chimney at the peak on the east gable end and a patch on the

west gable end, where a chimney was removed following a chimney fire in the later

20th century. There is also one brick chimney at the north gable end of the ell.

The roof is covered with hand-worked, standing-seam metal.

The house appears to have been a nine-bent structure of two rooms with a Dutch-style

jambless fireplace located in the middle. The ell was a free-standing, five-bent

structure, perhaps a summer kitchen, which also had a jambless fireplace set off about

eight feet to the north of the house and staggered eight feet to the east. Visible

evidence inside the house supports the contention that the two structures were joined

near the end of the 18th century.

Recommendations for repair in this section are merely for stabilization and preservation

purposes as first steps toward a full renovation. A more comprehensive approach is

outlined in a later section.

22


SOUTH ELEVATION

South elevation 2004 (Darlene S. RIemer Architect P.C. ) The dotted line shows the east end of the original house.

The main section of the house is 46’ long by 25’ deep with a one-room addition at the

west end. The main entrance is located two feet off center to the east. The

architrave around the door and 6/6 sidelights date to their installation, but the door is

a “colonial-style,” six-panel metal door that is substantially both narrower and shorter

than the original, and the door frame is filled to make up the difference. This entrance

configuration was likely created during the major renovation around 1775, which saw

the east gable end extended by two anchor bents (eight feet) in order to line up with,

and join with, the auxiliary five-bent structure; abandonment of the center jambless

fireplace in favor of English-style fireplaces at the east and west gable ends; creation of

a center hall by removing an anchor beam and reframing the ceiling.

The asbestos siding was installed around a porch, nine feet wide, which had handrails

that returned to the building. This may have been a version of an early Dutch-style

stoop with facing benches.

There are two 1/1 replacement windows nearly symmetrically placed on either side of

the entrance. Early flat window casing is visible with aluminum triple-track storm

23


South elevation 2014

windows applied to it. A wall-dormer with 6/6 single-hung sash sits off-center two feet

to the west above the entrance, with its face on the same plane as the front of the

house.

CONDITION ASSESSMENT

• The standing-seam metal roof is in fair condition. It was last recoated with aluminum

paint around 2004.

• The asbestos siding is in poor condition, especially at the lower courses as a result of

the house being at grade, with no drainage.

• All six panes of glass are missing from the bottom sash of the west sidelight.

• All of the window sills are deteriorated.

• All door and window trim need consolidation and repair, replacement, or

reconstruction.

24


• A 6’x8’ concrete slab, poured directly against the sill outside the entrance door,

caused catastrophic rot and failure of the mortise pocket holding the joist spanning

the depth of the house. This joist has been jacked up and supported recently.

East elevation 2004 (Darlene S. RIemer Architect P.C. ) The dotted line shows the end of the five-bent structure.

EAST ELEVATION

The east elevation of the William Pitcher house faces an expanse of fields, which were

part of the original Peter Pitcher farm. At the far east end of these fields is a small

house that was built by William’s son Philip, around 1800.

The east elevation of the William Pitcher house, which is 25’ wide and 22’ tall at the

peak, has a bulkhead to the basement, which replaced an earlier entrance on the south

side. The brick of the back of the fireplace is exposed as is common in this area. On

either side of the brick, asymmetrically placed, are two 1/1 double-hung replacement

windows with triple-track storm windows. Above there are two windows, the southern

is a single nine-light sash, which appears to be quite old, and the north is a single-hung

6/6 unit that appears to be original to the circa 1775 renovation. The windows are

25


East elevation 2014

not evenly spaced in relation to the peak. The brick chimney extends up through

through the roof approximately three feet at the peak. The north ell 27’ deep and is

shorter than the main house by 18”. There are two 1/1 double-hung replacement

windows with aluminum storms on the east side of the ell.

CONDITION ASSESSMENT

• Biological growth is overtaking the chimney at the east gable end.

• Asbestos siding is compromised, broken, and in some places missing.

• The bulkhead door is missing, leaving the basement open to the weather and

intruders.

• The house is sitting right at or slightly below grade, which has likely caused sill

damage.

• Window sills are rotted due to moisture trapped by storm windows.

26


NORTH ELEVATION

North elevation 2004 (Darlene S. RIemer Architect P.C. )

The north gable end of the ell is 22’ wide and 20’ tall at the peak. The ground slopes

away to the north, exposing two feet of the dry-laid stone foundation at this end. One

foot in from the east corner is a single-light metal door with brick-mold casing. This

door opens onto a wooden landing with three steps down to grade. Placed

symmetrically above are two window openings, covered with sheets of plexiglass. The

trim around these windows is wood. The roof does not project out beyond the walls of

the house beyond an inch or two. There are no eaves or rakes. The brick chimney at

the north gable end of the ell extends up through the roof at the peak by one foot or

less.

The north elevation of the main house, which is nine feet high at the eave in addition to

two feet of exposed foundation, has no visible windows or doors. A 20th-century

block chimney for a wood stove runs up the outside, piercing the eave and extends up

another nine feet.

There is a bulkhead opening to the basement (B1) under the west addition.

27


The north elevation of the west addition has one 6/6 double-hung sash with an

aluminum storm.

North elevation 2014

CONDITION ASSESSMENT

• Biological growth is causing damage to the chimney and the siding.

• The chimney is in need of reconstruction above the roof.

• Asbestos siding is missing, exposing asphalt shingle siding and sheathing beneath.

• The metal door is badly rusted.

• Door and window trim are rotted as a result of years without maintenance.

• There is no bulkhead door covering the stairs to the basement.

• The stone foundation on the north side was at some point, perhaps when the west

addition was added, coated with concrete, which over time has trapped moisture and

in places damaged the foundation through freeze-thaw cycles.

28


WEST ELEVATION

West elevation 2004 (Darlene S. RIemer Architect P.C. )

The story-and-a-half ell extends out 25’ from the north side of the main house. There

is one 6/6 single-hung window with an aluminum storm, which lines up with the window

on the other side of the ell, nine feet in from the gable end. One foot in from the main

house, beginning four feet up, is a late 20th-century, single-pane, awning window.

The west gable end of the main house has one replacement 1/1 window on the first

story, tight against the west end addition. There are two replacement 1/1 windows

above and nearly centered on the peak.

The one-story addition on the west end, circa 1900, is stepped back five feet from the

front facade and sits on a poured concrete foundation. The extension, which contains

a kitchen, extends west 16’ and is 14’ wide across the gable end. On the front, the

south side, there is an entry door with a 6/6 double hung window to the right. The

west and north sides each have one 6/6 double-hung sash. The exterior cladding is

asbestos shingle, with asphalt shingle beneath and novelty siding as the original finish.

The north side of the main house is windowless. The ell off the north side on the east

end extends back 25’ and is 22’ wide at the gable. The west side of the ell has one

29


original 6/6 single-hung window on the first floor, a door in the north wall and a

replacement 1/1 double-hung window on the east side.

West elevation 2014

CONDITION ASSESSMENT

The west side of the ell has experienced significant failures and losses.

• The corner where the ell meets the main house has been significantly damaged by

water over time. Siding, sheathing, and the small awning window are gone.

• The 6/6 window in the ell took on and held water at some point, which caused the sill

to rot away completely, taking with it all the nogging, sheathing, and siding in and on

the wall beneath. Given the amount of water damage, and that the house is very

near grade along the west wall of the ell, the sill is likely compromised as well.

• Asbestos siding is missing, exposing asphalt shingle siding and sheathing beneath.

• Window sills are rotted from storm windows and years without maintenance.

• The stone foundation on the west side was at some point, perhaps when the west

addition was added, coated with concrete, which over time has trapped moisture and

in places damaged the foundation through freeze-thaw cycles.

30


IMMEDIATE EXTERIOR RECOMMENDATIONS

• Remove all biological growth from exterior.

• Reconstruct, repoint chimneys as needed.

• Remove flaking roof material and rust; repair as needed (where ell meets main house)

and coat with elastomeric acrylic.

• Regrade around the building and install curtain drains daylighting to low area to the

northwest of the house.

• Remove cement from foundation on north and west; repair as needed.

• Remove lower courses of siding and sheathing to inspect sills; scarf in repairs/replace

sills as needed.

• Remove aluminum storms and repair, restore, reglaze old sashes. Remove

replacement 1/1 units, repair and restore old jambs, sills, and trim.

• Repair bulkhead door areas and enclose.

31


DESCRIPTION +

CONDITION ASSESSMENT

INTERIOR

The Pitcher farmhouse consists of three levels: the cellar, the main floor, and the

garret. The house originally had two rooms on the main floor, separated by a central

jambless fireplace, a garret above, and a cellar below under the east half. The house as

originally built was a nine-bent structure, 38’ along the eave by 25’ deep. It was

framed in the Dutch style typical of the area.

“The hallmark of Dutch American framing logic is its simplicity.” 1

Dutch structures consist of a series of H-

shaped “bents that are lined up, one

behind the next (figure 1). Massive beams

connect each pair of posts with a pegged

mortise-and-tenon joint, to form a bent.

Bents are closely spaced, typically 3-1/2’

and 5-1/2’ apart. Each bent is mortised

into sill and top plates that run the length

of the eaves. Rafter pairs are generally set

above each bent. The typical joint

between the rafter and collar beam is a

half dovetail. The size of the house is

determined by the number of bents. For

example, a five bent house would be

between 14’ and 22’ long and as wide as

the anchor beam. The Dutch tended to

live compactly, often in a one-room

structure with a garret for storage and

figure 1- the eight-bent, center-chimney Winne

House 1751 (Timothy J. Gallagher 2005,

Metropolitan Museum of Art)

1 Clifford W. Zink, p. 273, “Dutch Framed Houses in New York and New Jersey,”

Winterthur Portfolio, Vol. 22, No. 4

32


some sleeping, accessible by a ladder or by an

enclosed set of stairs to keep the heat in the living

space. The defining feature of a Dutch house is the

jambless fireplace (figure 2). The large open hearth

supported by either an arch or a cradle braced

against a lintel or corbel stone projecting from the

foundation wall, and a chimney beginning on the

second floor, supported by short trimmer beams,

to extend through the roof. What is now the ell off

the north side was a separate five-bent structure,

with a jambless fireplace at the north gable end,

and a garret above. This structure, likely a summer

kitchen, was situated approximately eight feet to

the north of the main house and offset about eight

feet to the east.

The interior spaces reflect, with the exception of

the insertion of a bathroom into the front hall, a

reconfiguration and renovation that likely

occurred in the last quarter of the 18th century.

figure 2- jambless fireplace (Dutch Barn

Preservation Society, Newsletter Spring 1998,

Vol. 11, Issue 2)

There were three campaigns of alterations to this structure, each likely corresponding

to a population increase, to a death in the family, and a change of ownership.

This change of configuration from center chimney to center hall was a common update

to mid-18th-century houses in the area. The first and most structurally significant

renovation involved removal of the center chimney, shifting the third anchor bent,

removing the fourth anchor bent completely, creating a center hall, adding two bents

to the east gable end of the house, which increased the total length to 46’ and

brought the gable end in line with the east wall of the summer kitchen, constructing

English-style fireplaces at the east and west ends, applying Federal-style windows and

moldings, and attaching the free-standing five-bent summer kitchen building to the

north side. These alterations reflect stylistic changes that were appropriate between

2

1770 and the early 1800s. The renovation also reflected changes in the life of William

2

Nancy Kelly, Dutchess County Historical Society 2005-2006 Yearbook , Vol. 85, p.76

33


Pitcher. When he received title to the farm, house and 275 acres from his father Peter

in 1768, William was already living in this house with his wife Magdalena Donsbach, five

children, and probably two slaves. Six years later, William Pitcher had married a second

time and had produced five more children with his brother Adam’s widow, Anna Maria

Richter. The confluence of the death of his father, becoming the owner of a substantial

farm, and the increased population of his household, likely spurred the first campaign of

improvements to the homestead. Often, as in the case of the Christian Moore house

approximately one mile away to the northwest, and in the Heermance house one mile

to the northeast, the later 18th-century renovation involved adding four or five bents

and an end chimney to an existing five-bent structure that already had a chimney at

one gable end.

The door hardware upstairs—HL hinges and the ghosts of HL hinges, and Norfolk

latches—suggests that rooms were first partitioned in the late 18th or early 19th

century. William Pitcher died in 1800, leaving the house to his son John W. Pitcher.

The population of the household grew from nine people in 1790 to thirteen people in

1820. The combination of these factors, along with changing attitudes toward privacy

and access, would have contributed to this second campaign.

The last significant stylistic change to the house occurred around 1860, when Andrew

Pitcher inherited the property upon the death of his father, John W. Pitcher. Plain

beaded door trim and baseboard on the main floor in rooms 106 and 107 reflect the

taste of that time.

34


THE CELLAR: Description and Condition

N

B4

LINTEL

B3

B2

B1

patched opening

sill rotted

Cellar- plan view 2004 (Darlene S. Riemer Architect P.C. )

B1 B2 B3

Section view, from rear/north 2004 (Darlene S. RIemer Architect P.C. )

35


CELLAR SPACE B1

Beneath the eastern end of the main house, the east room (105) and the center hall

(103/104), Room B1 is 26’ east-west by 25’ north-south and 6’ 6” from the floor to

the bottom of the beams.

Floor: The cellar appears to have a dirt floor, but it is unclear if this is due to

infiltration.

Walls: The foundation is bluestone rubble, which appears to have been laid up with

mortar. It has been repointed and there is remnant lime parging indicating that the

space was functional. The foundation was expanded 8’ to the east to accommodate

the enlarged circa 1775 footprint of the house. It appears that the bulkhead entrance

was relocated at that time, allowing access from the east side rather than from the

south.

At the west end of B1, 3’ from the floor surface, the lintel stone for support of the

hearth projects out 5”. This stone is 8’ long and centered on the wall (photo B1-1). In

the northwest corner are stairs leading up to an exterior door (hidden behind asbestos

siding) on the north side, and to a door beneath the stairs, which would have opened

into the center hall (now Room 104).

Rubble walls support the English-style fireplace above at the east end. This enclosed

area has rough plank shelves.

Ceiling: The ceiling is made of the original floorboards from the rooms above. The

massive beams that span the cellar north-south are 10”x14” by 25’ long and appear to

be chestnut. Trimmer beams, 10”x14” by approximately 4’ long span the first two

beams at the east and west ends.

Systems: An oil-fired furnace was installed in B1. It appears to be at least 40 years

old and is vented through the chimney. There is also a retro-fitted 55-gallon drum for

burning wood attached to the duct system. Sheet metal ducts deliver hot air through

floor vents downstairs. Crude openings in the foundation on the west and north side

allow vents to pass heat to the rest of the main floor. There is a panel box to the left

of the lintel stone on the west wall. Also visible in the basement is the plumbing for

the only bathroom in the house (104), including the main waste line that exits the

building on the north side. None of these systems are functional at this time.

36


Condition: B1 has moisture issues. Water is able to infiltrate through several large

openings in the envelope. Most notably, there is a lack of appropriate covering over

the bulkhead opening, and the area under the front entrance where the sill rotted away

completely due to having had a concrete pad poured against it sometime in the 20th

century (photo B1-2). The loss of this section of sill caused one of the main support

beams spanning the cellar to drop about two feet, taking the trimmer beams with it.

This beam has since been jacked back up and stabilized.

Lack of gutters and the fact that the house sits at grade or slightly below on the south

side are contributing to this moisture problem.

The foundation is bowing in considerably where the original bulkhead entry was located.

The vertical lines of the patch are quite clear where the opening was.

37


photo B1-1- bulge in foundation at orignial

bulkhead

photo B1-2- top view of lintel stone projecting out from west wall of basement

38


photo B1-3- fallen beam due to water

and concrete slab

photo B1-4- furnace and ducts

39


CELLAR SPACE B2

Due to the position of ductwork, it is not possible to get more than a peek into the

crawlspace that is B2 and verify that it is, in fact, a crawlspace and support beams,

similar to those visible in B1.

CELLAR SPACE B3

At the west end of the main house, beneath the circa 1900 addition is cellar space B3.

The cellar is accessed through a bulkhead on the north side of the addition.

Foundation: The foundation is poured concrete, 16’ east-west, 14’ north- south and 7’

deep with a slab floor.

NOTE: At this time it is not possible to get into B3 for further inspection. This

situation will be resolved with a bit of effort and a machete.

CELLAR SPACE B4

Due to the position of ductwork, it is not possible to get even a peek into the

crawlspace that is B4.

B3-1 access to B3

40


IMMEDIATE CELLAR RECOMMENDATIONS

• Remove ALL systems and related ducting, wiring, pipes, etc…

• Support all framing for examination and stabilization.

• Rebuild and repoint foundation as needed.

41


THE FIRST FLOOR: DESCRIPTION

107

106

104

101 102

105

103

Main level plan view 2004 (Darlene S. Riemer Architect P.C. )

The main block of the William Pitcher house is a one-room deep rectangle, 46’ along

the eaves and 25’ deep, with a small one-room, one-story addition at the west end and

a story and a half ell off the north side. As it stands now there is a central entry

chamber 10’ wide and 14’ deep. A doorway through the left wall of the entry leads to

the west parlor (102), which is 17’ wide. At the far west end of the west parlor is the

circa 1900 addition that appears to have housed a modern kitchen. A doorway

through the right wall of the entry hall leads to the east parlor (105), which is also 17’

wide. At the back of the entry hall are two doors: the left hides a stair that rises and

turns to the left; the right leads to a pass-through full bathroom, beyond which is a

narrow hall that runs along the west side of the ell. The hall gives access to 106,

which is also accessed through the east parlor (105), and opens onto the dry kitchen

(107).

42


ROOM 101, WEST ADDITION

Description: Room 101 is a one-story addition 16’ wide by 14’ deep. Based on the

poured foundation, novelty-style siding and interior finishes of wainscot paneling, it was

built around 1900. Except for the insertion of the bathroom into the center hall, this

was the last major change to the Pitcher house.

A modern, metal-clad door gives entry to this room from the outside on the south side

of the house. In the northwest corner is a pantry closet, with a trapdoor cut into the

original sub-floor, which leads to the B3 Cellar Space. The flooring in the rest of the

room is linoleum tiles on top of at least one layer of plywood, on top of the original

pine flooring. Walls are a combination of wallboard and 1960s chipboard paneling over

plaster on lath on all but the north wall and on the outside of the pantry closet, which

are plaster on lath. There is a simple chair rail on the north wall and on the outside of

the pantry with vertically installed bead-board paneling beneath, which appears to be

original. Door trim is flat 1”x6” pine. The windows are 6/6 double-hung sashes which

appear to be from the date of construction. There is one window on each of the south,

west, and north walls. The windows have rounded sills that match the chair rail, and are

trimmed with flat 1”x4” pine. The east wall has a doorway into the west parlor (102)

and a half-wall with a pass-through “window” taking up most of the wall. This opening

was likely created in the 1980s after a fire in the chimney that stood against this wall.

Systems: Room 101 has an antique enamel covered gas stove on the north wall and

feed and drain lines for a sink, which have been cut off at the floor on the east wall.

Electric service in this room consists of one 110-volt outlet on the north wall where BX

wiring has been snaked through the wall; one 220-volt outlet on the west wall for a

stove or dryer; and a florescent light fixture recessed into the wainscot-paneled ceiling.

Finishes: The bead-board ceiling is coated with a thick calcimine-type product. The top

layer of finish on the walls is a latex paint. The surface layer of paint on the door and

window trim contains lead. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

43


101-1 looking west from room 102 doorway

44


ROOM 102, WEST PARLOR

Description: Room 102 is 17’ wide and 24’ deep.

The flooring material is plywood, laid over 2”x3”

sleepers, on top of the original flooring. The

north and south walls are plaster on top of riven

lath, nailed to the posts of the anchor posts.

Wall infill is the local version of wattle and daub,

which consists of splits of wood, approximately

3” in diameter and 4’ long, which are tapered at

the ends and fitted horizontally into v-grooves

cut into the sides of the posts of each anchor

bent. (figure 3 and figure 4) The splits serve as a

matrix to hold an infill of mud and straw. At the

west end, next to the doorway and pass-through

window opening to 101, a patched area of the

floor approximately 8’ wide by 3’ deep is

evidence of there having been a hearth stone in

the floor, for a fireplace that was removed in the

1980s. The east wall divides room 102 from the

entry hall (103). The doorway between the two

is centered. To the left of the door, the wall is

covered with horizontally laid planks 12” wide.

To the right of the door, the wall is plaster over

wattle and daub. A portion of the south wall,

between and beneath the windows, is clad in

drywall, as is the west wall. This was likely done

when the replacement windows were installed,

after the west end fireplace and chimney were

removed. The anchor beams are partially clad in

painted “1-by” pine. Macro and microscopic

analysis has determined that they are poplar, as

can also be seen in the Palatine Farmstead of

Franz Nehr and the Mathias Progue house in

Rhinebeck, both of which date to the mid-18th

century. The anchor beams, which

figure 3- split lath infill matrix with

mud and straw removed

figure 4- detail of grooved post

45


were 10” wide by 14” deep, have had the bottom 6” cut off, sometime in the 19 th

century, as was the fashion, to give more headroom. Nail holes and lime burns show

that the ceiling was, at that point, plastered over (photo 102-2). The ceiling space

between the anchor beams is filled with patches of plywood, T-111 paneling, and

acoustical tiles. There are two windows on the south wall and one on the west wall. All

three are 1/1 replacement windows installed in existing openings. Older sills are visible,

but otherwise there is no casing. Casing on the doorway between 102 and 101 is flat

1”x4”. Casing on the doorway between 102 and 103 is a typically Federal-style

architrave, about 5” wide with a 3/4 round-bead and a back band (photo 102b). This

reflects the major renovation that took place in the second half of the 18th century.

Systems: There are outlets run through conduit along the baseboard and two registers

in the floor for hot air.

Finishes: The surface coating on the walls and flat pine trim is latex paint. The top

layer of finish on the door trim between 102 and 103 is a lead paint. (APPENDIX VII:

Finish Analysis)

46


102-1 view from southwest corner; stones

stacked against north wall behind

woodstove, small closet, doorway into

entry hall (103), half-clad anchor beams

102-2 south wall between windows, brick

infill of alterations, arrow to tenon of cut

portion of anchor beam

47


ROOM 103, ENTRY HALL/STAIR and ROOM 104, BATHROOM

Description: The configuration of the center hall is due to the installation of a

bathroom sometime in the second half of the 20th century. Originally, this space

would have been the west end of the east room. The jambless fireplace was positioned

on the west wall, where the doorway to 102 is now. A ghost of the crown of the

jambless fireplace smoke hood is visible on a post within the stair area (photo 203-1). In

the renovation circa 1775, the anchor beam (IV) to the east of the central chimney

was cut out, as were the trimmer beams on either side of the chimney. The ends of

these are visible where they were cut off in their mortises (photo 203-2) Lighter framing

members were installed in the ceiling between anchor beams III and V. Flooring above

was installed running north-south, in contrast to the rest of the house. At this time, a

staircase was added at the rear of the hall, on the west wall, where previously there

had likely been a ladder or very steep enclosed stair to the garret. This staircase would

have risen toward the north side to a landing and then turned to the east, based on the

what can be observed in the flooring above, and in other local examples such as the

Palatine Farmstead. To allow for the installation of the bathroom, the stairs above the

landing were turned to the west and three feet from the northern end of anchor bent V

was cut out to make room for the steps. In order to create the center hall, anchor

bent III was shifted approximately 2’ to the east. The center hall is 10’ wide and,

before the insertion of the bathroom, was 24’ deep. On the south wall is the main

entry, a door more than 3’ wide and approximately 86” tall, hung with strap hinges as

evidenced by the top pintel, which remains in place, and flanked by 6/6 single-hung

sidelights (photo 203-4) The bottom pintel, still visible, is below the level of the flooring.

The west and east walls each have a doorway into 102 and 105 respectively. As it is

now, the entry hall is 10’ wide and 14’ deep. The flooring is 1”x10” pine laid on top of

“2-by” sleepers, linoleum, at least one layer of plywood, and finally the original flooring.

The walls, south, east and west are plaster over riven lath.

Entering through the main door, which is metal-clad, colonial-style, straight ahead are

two flat-panel hollow-core doors that swing into the entry room. The door on the left

opens to the stairs (photo 203-6). The door on the right opens onto the bathroom. This

wall is vertically-installed, 20th-century, 1/4” thick bead-board strips, except for the

area over the door that opens to the stairs. This area is drywall suggesting that the

stairs were enclosed before the bathroom was created.

48


The ceiling of the front hall is the flooring of the floor above, planks approximately 12”

wide, laid down on top of the 6”x6” framing. Casing around the entrance door and

doorways into 102 and 105 are 5” wide Federal architrave with a back band. The stair

door has flat 1”x4” trim, and the bathroom door trim is missing. The baseboard is

mostly buried behind layers of flooring material and is covered by painted wallpaper.

The bathroom inserted into the hallway is a pass-through into the side hall of the ell

(photo 203-7). Immediately upon entering, there is a small vanity cabinet with sink on

the right and next to that, the toilet. On the left wall is a fiberglass tub surround with

2”x4” walls built around it, almost to the ceiling. The flooring is linoleum over plywood.

Because it is at the same level as the entry hall, there is likely a similar stratigraphy.

The walls and ceiling are drywall. There is no casing on the entry hall door or on the

hollow core door that leads to the side hall of the ell. The most interesting feature of

room 104 is the door to the basement, under the stair. It is a clinch-nailed, chamferedbatten

door, with a primitive wrought handle and a box lock made of wood, also held in

place with hand-wrought nails (photo 204-1). Based on the angle cut across the top

batten, which faces out into the room, and the modern brass-coated hinges, this door

was not originally hung this way. It appears to have been turned around and hung on

the face of the plank wall to accommodate the raised floor. On the other side of this

door, on the landing of the basement stairs, is a door to the outside, which has been

covered over with siding on the exterior.

Systems: Room 104 has water and drain lines, an overhead light fixture with a pull

chain, and a heat register in the floor.

Finishes: The ceiling, walls, hollow-core doors, and new pine trim are coated with latex

paint. The door to the basement has a lime-based finish. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

49


103-1 empty mortise for trimmer beam

above post with jambless hood ghost

103-2 west wall; arrow to cut off end of south trimmer beam

50


14”

105-3 Federal architrave and full height of anchor beam

105-4 view from south looking north into 106

51


103-3 entry door and sidelights

103-4 sidelight detail


52


103-5 astrigal detail

103-6 north wall of entry; stair door door open


53


103-7 north wall of entry; bathroom doors

open to side hall of ell

104-1 bathroom door to basement (B1)

54


ROOM 105, EAST PARLOR

Description: The east parlor is 16’ wide by 24’ deep, with an English-style fireplace

(photo 105-1) at the east end. Before the circa 1775 renovation and the partitioning of

the center hall, the east room of the Pitcher house was approximately 19’ wide and 24’

deep. The addition of 8’ to the east end of the house at that time lined up the gable

end with the five-bent summer kitchen allowing for attachment. Evidence of this 8’

extension is visible on the south wall of 105. Where the rest of the main block of the

house has the split wood matrix with mud and straw infill between the anchor posts,

this two-bent add-on and the entire east gable wall has an infill of unfired brick nogging

with lime-less clay mortar. (APPENDIX V: Masonry Analysis) Also, the original southeast

corner post, anchor post I, has an empty mortise pocket that would have held the knee

brace and a vertical groove that would have held the split wood infill matrix of the

gable end wall. (photo 105-2)

Flooring material in 105 consists of 1”x10” pine atop “2-by” sleepers, linoleum,

plywood, and the original floorboards. Walls are plaster. The ceiling and anchor beams,

which were cut down like the beams in 102 to allow for more headroom, are clad in

beadboard. There are two 1/1 replacement windows on the south wall and one on

either side of the chimney breast on the east wall. Window casing is flat 1”x4”. The

doorway casing into the center hall has the 5” wide Federal architrave (photo 105-3),

while the doorway trim on the north wall into 106 is approximately 4” wide with a 3/8”

bead (photo 105-4). The baseboard in 105 is inconsistent. The west wall is mostly

buried in flooring material; the area in front of the fireplace has 1”x4”; the rest of the

east wall has 5/4”x 6”or 8” with a 3/8” bead on top. The chimney breast was opened

up to allow for the installation of a cinderblock flue to vent the furnace in the

basement. After this intervention, the whole fireplace structure was framed up with

2”x4”s and covered with particle board.

Systems: Heat is delivered through floor registers. There are two overhead light

fixtures with pull chains and outlets along the baseboard with exposed bare Romex.

Finishes: Walls are covered with wallpaper that has been painted over. The woodwork

has accumulated between four and ten layers of paints and varnishes. (APPENDIX VII:

Finish Analysis)

55


105-1 English-style fireplace at east gable end

105-2 anchor post I, south wall, arrow to

empty knee brace mortise; unfired brick

nogging and lime-less mortar

56


ROOM 106, SOUTH ROOM OF ELL

Room 106 is 16’ wide and 12’ deep. There is a 1/1 replacement window on the east

side with 1”x4” casing; a doorway on the north wall with 4” wide casing with a 3/8”

bead, leads to the north room of the ell; a doorway on the west wall also with 4” wide

casing with a 3/8” bead leads to the west side hallway of the ell. Room 106, which is a

5” step down from 105 clearly shows the means of connection between the original

main house and the separate five-bent structure. The flooring is random-width, wide

pine running east-west for the first 8’ from 105 with a discernible hump in the floor.

This signifies the location of the sill of the summer kitchen structure. Beyond that

point, the floorboards are laid north-south. The walls are a combination of plaster and

plywood. The ceiling is 4” wide, 3/8” thick, fir tongue-and-groove with a single bead.

Where ceiling boards have been removed, the framing above is visible. The joists

running north-south connecting the south gable end of the summer kitchen structure

to the north wall of the main house are rough-hewn red oak on the north half, and

finished poplar on the south side. The poplar joists have a delicate ogee detail on the

bottom edges. This profile also appears five miles north as a facia detail at the Ten

Broeck family home, The Bouwerie, in a section that was constructed in 1762.

A sideboard type of cabinet, approximately 6’ long and 40” tall and 20” deep, is built in

against the north wall of 106, to the right of the doorway into 107 (photo 106-1).

There is a doorway in the north wall of 106, offset slightly to the west, which leads

into 107. The casing on this doorway is 1”x4” flat stock with a 3/8” bead. There is

also a doorway in the west wall, similarly clad, which leads into the side hall (photo

106-2).

Systems: There are two ungrounded outlets and a thermostat mounted approximately

48” off the floor on the east and south walls; an overhead light with a pull chain; and

two floor registers.

Finishes: The walls and hollow-core doors are covered with latex paint. The ceiling,

door trim, and sideboard top finishes contain lead. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

Interpretation: Due to the presence of the sideboard in 106 and proximity to 107 that

was, for most of the life of the structure a dry kitchen, it seems that 106 may have

served as a dining room. Without any furnishings, and given the condition of the

house, it is hard to know how the spaces were used. Knowing that the Pitchers always

57


had at least one domestic servant until the census of 1870, the side hall between the

kitchen and the front hall makes sense. In 1880 Andrew Pitcher was living in the house

with his son William (27) and daughter Sarah (32), both of whom married within the

next two years. WIlliam married Laura Lasher and moved to Tivoli to live with her

parents. Sarah married Henry Elting whose parents lived next door in a house built on

the site of Andrew’s brother Abraham’s house, which had burned down in 1875.

Perhaps the west addition (101) was constructed to be a second kitchen in order that

the large house could be divided into a two-family dwelling.

58


106-1 floor board direction change; sideboard; doorway into 107

106-2 ceiling covering; doorway into side hall


59


ROOM 107, NORTH ROOM OF ELL

Description: Room 107 is 12’ deep and spans the interior width of the ell at 20’. This

room was originally a separate building, likely a summer kitchen or perhaps an entire

small house, possibly moved from somewhere else. The latter option seems less likely

since the Pitchers went to a great deal of trouble to align the two buildings before

joining them together. If 107 could have been moved easily, arguably it would have

been.

Based on visible framing, 107 is 4/5ths of a

five-bent building that originally had a jambless

fireplace at the north end. At approximately

20’ wide by 16’, this building would have looked

like the summer kitchen at the Mabee Farm in

Rotterdam, New York. (figure 107a)

The posts of the bents are infilled with the

same matrix of split lath with mud and straw, as

in the original block of the main house. The

exception to this is to the left of the window on

the east wall, which is a 1/1 replacement with

no trim, where a post was added about 4”

inches from the anchor post, and the space

between was filled with stacked bricks (photo

107-1).

figure 107a- Mabee Farm summer

kitchen

On the north wall there is a one-light, metal-clad door with flat 1”x4” casing. The west

wall has an old 6/6 single-hung window, which, based on the muntin profile, dates to

the circa 1775 renovation (photo 107-2). The casing around this window is 4” wide with

a bead stop and a back band. The infill beneath this window is the split wood matrix,

but instead of a groove in the posts, the splits are held in place between vertical strips

of wood, affixed to the posts with small wrought nails. Perhaps this was an early

doorway, or a new opening was created for this 6/6. Paint sampling shows 18 layers

of finish on this window trim (see Paint Analysis).

Flooring in 107 is 1/4” masonite over random-width wide pine. The baseboards in 107,

as in 106, are 1”x6” with a 3/8” bead. The walls are plaster directly over mud and

straw, no lath. The ceiling is the same fir material as in 106. In the northwest corner

60


of 107 there is a closet 90” wide by 37” deep. This closet, a mid-19th-century

addition based on visible cut lath and 1”x4” trim with a radius bead on each doorway

inside and out, has two doorways and is plastered outside and clad with plywood inside

(photo 107-3). The left door was access to a very steep staircase as evidenced by the

angle at which the right door trim is cut inside the closet (photo 107-4). A charred

trimmer for the jambless fireplace is visible. The door on the right probably served as

access to a pantry cupboard. In the middle of the north wall, a brick chimney with a

stove pipe thimble is cantilevered approximately 3’ down from the ceiling. Visible lath

in the support for this chimney appears to be the same era cut lath as that which is in

the stair closet. Both 106 and 107 appear to have had their last major alterations in

the middle of the 19th century. The trim details are appropriate for that time period

and, if that is the case, it is also possible that the doorway between 105 and 106 was

cut through at that time.

Systems: Floor registers. Ungrounded outlets on the south wall and an overhead

fixture with a pull chain.

Finishes: The bead-board ceiling of 107 is coated with an oil-based paint that contains

lead. The walls are covered with multiple layers of wallpaper. The wood work—

baseboards, window and door trim, and stair closet—has a top coat of paint that

contains lead. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

61


107-1 east half of 107; north door; visible anchor posts; arrow to brick nogging

62


107-2 view south from 107, through

side hall and bathroom to front entry;

6/6 single-hung window

107-3 northwest closet/stair; chimney with stove thimble

63


THE SECOND FLOOR: DESCRIPTION

Upper level plan view 2004 (Darlene S. Riemer Architect P.C. )

64


ROOM 201, WEST BEDROOM

Description: Room 201 is at the west end of the upper level. It measures 24’ along

the gable end by 12’ along the eave. Entry is from the hallway. There are two 1/1

replacement windows in the gable end, which flanked the chimney that has been

removed. Knee-walls are approximately 3’ high.

The flooring is random-width wide pine, lightly nailed, mostly at the ends, with handwrought

nails. There are visible marks from a water-driven, sash-style reciprocating

saw. The floor boards appear to date to the original construction, due to their width,

irregularity, saw marks, and type and pattern of nailing (photo 201-1).

The north and south knee-walls are drywall over a thick lime coating applied directly to

mud and straw infill between the anchor posts. The plaster and the posts have a thick

coating of a limewash or casein-based paint (APPENDIX V: Masonry Analysis). The east

wall covering, north of the hall doorway, is horizontal planks that appear to be 1”x8”

tongue-and-groove. The east wall covering, south of the hall doorway is T-111

paneling, installed vertically. There is a decorative, scalloped valance nailed to the

collar tie that is the top of this wall.

The hand-hewn collar ties are exposed and wallboard is applied between them. The

sloping sides are wallboard over tongue-and-groove 1”x8” (photo 201-2).

The door into the hall is a 6’ tall clinch-nailed, chamfered-batten door. The beveled

battens are on the hall side of the door.

There is no baseboard. There is no casing on the windows. The door is trimmed in flat

stock which sits flush with the horizontal planks.

Hardware: The hinges are modern, but there are ghosts of earlier HL hinges. The

thumb latch is a decorative Norfolk latch that appears to be original to the door, as

there is no evidence of an earlier latch (photo 201-3a, 201-3b).

Systems: There is a ceiling fixture with a pull chain. The wire runs out of the south wall

and is draped to the fixture. There are no outlets. Heat arrives through a hole cut in

the floor with a decorative register grate over it.

Finishes: The drywall and other woodwork are top coated with latex paint. There is no

suggestion that there was ever a finish on the flooring. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

65


201-1 saw marks in flooring

201-2 collar beams, anchor posts…

66


Evolution: Room 201 shows evidence of having been divided into two rooms of equal

size. A paint ghost on the floor shows the absence of a wall that ran from the middle

of the gable end wall to the middle of the hallway wall. There appears to have been no

door between these two rooms. The room on the north was accessed through the

existing doorway. The room on the south was accessed through what is now 202.

This south doorway is hidden behind the T-111 paneling (photo 201-4).

201-3a, 201-3b door with HL ghosts, Norfolk-style latch detail

67


201-4 view from northwest corner; dotted line marks former doorway to 202 (dormer room)

68


ROOM 202, DORMER ROOM

Description: Room 202 is situated over the entry hall. The room is 10’ deep and 13’

6” along the eave. A dormer is centered on the south side.

The floor of the eastern two-thirds of 202 is planks of approximately 12” wide, laid

north-south. The western 4’ of 202 has plywood as flooring. This 1/2” plywood, along

with a platform framed with 2”x6” stock, compensates for the drop of 6”.

The walls are covered with particle board or masonite. The east and west walls have

machine-cut lath beneath the masonite, affixed to dimensioned studs. The north wall

has no lath, but the studding, which is more primitive, shows lime burns implying that

there was lath at an earlier point, or that the material was reused from elsewhere

(photo 202-1).

The western 4’ of the south wall has mud and straw with stick matrix as infill covered

with thick coats of limewash or casein-based paint, as in Room 201. The rest of the

south wall is open and the changes that were necessary to create the center hall are

visible (photo 202-2).

All of the ceiling surfaces and the cheeks of the dormer are clad in 1”x10” planks with

a small bead. Beneath the planking on the flat section there is plaster and lath. The

dormer has a band molding at the roof line on a 1”x12” with a 3/8”- 7/16” bead at

the bottom (photo 202-3).

The dormer has a pair of 6/6 sashes, the profile of which matches that of the

sidelights in the entry hall and the window in 107.

The door to the hall is not extant. The door casing is a variation on the delicate Federal

trim of the main floor, but it is a bit coarser. The band molding is not quite as refined

and the bead at the inside edge is a 3/8”- 7/16” simple bead rather than the 5/16”

bead rounded over. There are two doorways that were covered over with wallboard.

One is in the north end of the west wall and leads to the south room that was half of

102, and the other is in the north end of the east wall, and leads into the east room,

1-4. Both of these doorways are cased with flat 1”x4”.

69


Hardware: The only hardware in 202 is the top pintel that was driven into the trim on

the left-hand side of the doorway to 203 (photo 202-4). There is a slightly rectangular

hole where the bottom pintel had been.

Systems: There is a electric box hung on the hall doorway. A piece of Romex runs from

the south wall and spans the room droopily. A second length of Romex runs up from

the south wall and pokes out the dormer window, through the gap above the sash, for

an outside light.

Finishes: The surface coat of paint on the ceiling paneling and woodwork in 202 is an

oil-based paint that contains lead. The drywall is coated with a latex-based paint. On

the south wall, where the framing is exposed, the top plate, anchor posts, and

plastered infill are covered with a whitewash containing lime. (APPENDIX VII: Finish

Analysis)

Evolution: Reconfiguration of the building to create the front hall required the removal

of anchor bent IV, numbered from east to west. The split lath infill was removed in this

area and the siding was turned over and repurposed as flat sheathing. Paint lines are

visible to support this assertion (photo 202-2). A lighter piece of hewn framing, which

appears to be tapered like an English-style gunstock post, was inserted in place of

anchor post IV as a siding nailer. There are three pieces of true 2”x4” beneath the top

plate, which have lime burns showing that they once supported lath and plaster.

Perhaps the south wall had lath, but it seems equally plausible that the knee wall was

planked. This wall was opened up again and dimensioned 2”x4”s were inserted

vertically among the true 2”x4”s, fiberglass batts were stapled up, and drywall was

nailed on.

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202-1 view of northwest corner, dotted lines mark former doorway to 201

202-2 south wall; infill partially removed for center hall project

71


202-3 dormer cheek; beaded plank paneling, back band on beaded board

202-4 pintel in door trim between 202/203

72


ROOM 203, UPSTAIRS HALL

Description: Room 203 is situated above the bathroom and incorporates the stairs.

This area is 13’6” deep and 13’ 6” along the eave. The stairs rise to a 30”x30”

landing at the north wall of the house. At that point they turn to the west and rise one

step to another landing approximately 30”x30”. Turning to the right, one rises one

more step to face south and proceed into the hall area. A person of average height

cannot navigate this course without hitting their head. A 3’ section at the north end of

anchor beam V on the west side of the stairs was cut out to allow for the landings.

The stairs and landings are partially carpeted. The floor is random-width wide pine.

The western 4’ of the hall area and Room 202 are 6” lower than the rest of the upper

level of the house. Floor boards run east-west in the previously described area,

perpendicular to the anchor bents. The flooring in the rest of 203 is not uniform. It is

all installed perpendicular to the framing that was put in to create the center hall, but

there is a large, patched area to the east of the existing stair throat. Two pallets stand

in place of a railing (photo 103-1).

The walls are random-width horizontal planks with a 3/16”-1/4” quirked bead. They

are butted together at intervals; the joints are not staggered. The planks are hand

planed (photo 203-2). The western 4’ of the south wall was built later based on the use

of round-headed, wire nails as fasteners. The door casing on the hall side of 201 is flat

1”x4”, flush with the wall planking. The door casing on the hall side of 202 is 1”x4”

with a 3/8” bead, flush with the wall planking. On the east wall, the door casings to

204 and into the garret of the ell are 1”x4” with a bead as well.

The flat and sloped areas of the ceiling are clad in the same beaded planking as the

walls. Beneath the planking on the flat section, there is plaster and lath.

There are no windows.

Systems: There is a box hanging from the ceiling for a fixture with exposed BX wire to

it.

Finishes: A portion of the ceiling of 203 is top coated with latex paint. The remainder

of the surfaces are covered with oil-based paint. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

Evolution: This area didn’t exist as proper living space before the circa 1775

reconfiguration. Prior to that time, the upstairs was likely just a garret for storage and

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perhaps sleeping. It was accessed by a ladder or steep staircase on one side of the

central jambless fireplace, which was a common placement. The current awkward

placement of the stairs and the crude way that the anchor beam was cut to allow for

them, along with the patched flooring, imply that the staircase was previously laid out

with a turn to the east rather than west. There are square holes in the outboard side

of each step tread for spindles, verifying that the stairs are on the proper side of the

hallway. This alteration was made in the later mid-1900s to allow for the installation

of the bathroom in the main level hall. At the same time, the wall with hollow-core

doors was put up to separate the bathroom and the stairs from the entry hall, and the

stair wall was clad in 5/16” tongue-and-groove wainscot strips. There is a similarly

clad wall dividing the stairs from the east half of the stair area on the upper level.

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203-1 upstairs hall, looking east; pallet railing; middle left door to passage into garret

(Room 206); view into Room 204

203-2 west wall; plank wall and ceiling


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ROOM 204, EAST BEDROOM

Description: Room 204 is at the east end of the house. Access is from the hallway.

The room is 18’ wide at the gable and 17’ along the eave. The knee-wall on the south

side is approximately 3’ high. The north wall is a full height partition wall. There are

two windows in the gable end. One window is on either side of the fireplace. The

chimney is 5’ wide and protrudes 2’ into the room. On the left side is a small fireplace,

2’ high, 30” wide, and 1’ deep. The sides and back are sharply angled, rising to a small

flue. The brick to the right of the fireplace was opened to allow for the installation of a

cinderblock flue for the furnace. The chimney was, at one time, covered with plaster,

then later framed out with modern, kiln-dried 2”x4”s and clad in drywall (photo 204-1).

The flooring is random-width pine, ranging from 6”-13”. This is the only floor in the

house that is painted.

The walls are covered with drywall. On the west wall, to the north of the doorway to

the hall (203), the drywall is hung over plaster; south of the doorway drywall is hung

on sleepers that horizontally span the wall, hiding a doorway to the dormer room (202)

and the rest of the wall, which is framed with true 2”x4”s and cut lath (photo 204-2).

The drywall on the south and east wall is undamaged. The north wall is drywall over

modern, kiln-dried 2”x4”s (photo 204-3).

The ceiling is a particle board material with 1/4”x 2” strips covering the joints, beneath

which plaster and lath are visible.

The north window at the east gable end is a single-hung 6/6. The muntin profile

matches that of the 6/6 in the dormer, the north window in 107, and the entry side

lights (photo 204-4). The south window sashes at the east gable end are missing. The

jamb, which matches the one to the north, is still in place. There is a nine-light sash

hung from the exterior trim, serving as a storm window.

The door to the hall is a clinch-nailed batten door, constructed of four beaded planks.

The door has been modified. The paint evidence suggests that at least 2” was cut off

the latch side (photo 204-5).

Hardware: The door swings south into the hallway on an HL and H hinge that are not

original. The ghosts of pancake hinges are visible on the batten side of the door, which

leads to the inside room of 204 (photo 204-6). There is not an operable thumb latch on

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the door to 204. There is a broken Norfolk latch; only a portion of the back plate and

the handle remain. The size of this door, along with the paint ghosts of strap hinges,

suggests that it may have been the original door to 202 at the time of the circa 1775

campaign of renovation.

Systems: There is a ceramic light fixture with a pull chain on the ceiling. There is a hole

in the floor to the south of the chimney with a grate to allow heat to rise from below.

Finishes: The ceiling and walls of 204 are coated with latex paint. The flat stock trim is

coated with latex as well. The jamb of the south window on the east gable end which,

based on it being single hung and having the muntin profile, dates to the later 18th

century (along with the 103 sidelights and the 107 west window). It has traces of a

grainy bright green pigment. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

Evolution: Room 204 is the most finished of the upper level rooms. The relatively

recent partitioning of the storage area 205, painted floor, drywall cladding, baseboard

molding, closed ceiling, and the fact that it is the only room upstairs with a fireplace,

make it by far the most comfortable seeming room in the house. (Note: 201 may have

also had a fireplace before the chimney was removed in the 1980s.) Given that at

some point in the 19th century, there were two doors into 204, one from the hallway

and one from the dormer room, it is likely that 204, like 201, was divided into two

rooms.

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204-1 looking east

204-2 looking west into hallway (203) through right doorway; into dormer

room (202) through drywall covering doorway on the left

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204-3 looking east; north wall partitions off a storage area (205) accessed

through the garret.

204-4 window to the north of the chimney

breast

79


204-5 door to 204; ghosts of pancake hinges; battens cut back and latch

edge ripped

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ROOM 205, STORAGE AREA

Description: Room 205 is tucked into the eave at the north side of 204, and accessed

through a door just inside the “foyer” to the garret (206).

The floor in 205 is random-width pine.

The gable end wall is clad in 1”x8” planking. The inside of the partition wall is unclad.

The knee-wall is plaster over the matrix of horizontal riven sticks, mud, and straw,

except for the eastern two bays, which are infilled with unfired brick nogging.

The ceiling is clad in 1”x8” planking as well.

Windows: None

The door to 205 is a two-plank, clinch-nailed batten door, which is original to this

location. The top of the door is cut to match the roof-line. (photo 205-1)

Hardware: The door is hung with HL hinges.

Systems: None

Finishes: All of the layers of finish on the door to 105 are chalky and react with

vinegar. (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

Evolution: Room 205 is separated from 204 by a wall of modern kiln-dried 2”x4”s,

which are not covered on the 205 side. The west end of this dividing wall, however, is

framed with light riven and hewn posts, suggesting that the bulk of this wall is a 20thcentury

addition, dating to the improvements to 204, which included closing off the

door to the dormer room, covering the plaster ceiling with particle board, hanging

drywall and installing baseboard trim. The western 3’ of this wall, however, was put up

earlier in order to create a passage from the garret above the ell, into the upper level

hall of the main house. (photo 205-2 & photo 205-3)

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photo 205-1 view of outside of 205 door, seen from upper hall area (202)


photo 205-2 view into passage way from

upper hall area (203) into the garret (206)

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photo 205-3- view from north end of garret; red arrow points to passage to upper level hall

(203); knee brace at original northeast corner of main house

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ROOM 206, GARRET

Description: Room 206, the garret of the north ell, is 21’ wide across the gable end

and 26’ deep. Room 206 is an unfinished space, except for Room 207 which is

partitioned off in the northeast corner (photo 206-1). Current access is through the

passageway described previously.

The flooring in 206 (and 207) is random-width pine. The widest board is 25” across.

The flooring is fastened lightly with hand-wrought nails.

The south end of 207 is the exterior of the main house: beneath the top plate are

various infill materials, covered with thick layers of whitewash or limewash (photo 206-2).

The other walls have no cladding or infill.

There is no ceiling, as such. The roof structure is exposed. The rafters of 206 are

slightly tapered to a pegged lap or bridle joint at the peak. The rafters are either

pegged or nailed to the top plate (photo 206-3), there is no bird’s mouth. The collar ties

are lapped and pegged (photo 206-4). Live edge slabs serve as purlins, to which wood

shingles are nailed.

Window: At the north gable end, there is a window opening on either side of the

chimney. The sashes have been replaced with a single piece of plexiglass.

The door from 203 into the passageway to 206 is like the other doors in the upper

level of the house. It is a clinch-nailed, beaded plank, chamfered-batten door (photo

206-5, 206-6).

Hardware: The door to 206 has HL hinges, clinch-nailed in place, which appear to be

the only hinges that have ever been on this door. There is an intact Norfolk thumb

latch that matches the broken one on 204 (photo 206-7, 206-8).

Systems: None

Finishes: (APPENDIX VII: Finish Analysis)

Evolution: The northern five bents of 206 comprised a separate structure as evidenced

by the change in rafter material after Bent V; nail holes corresponding to siding at what

was the south gable end; knee braces at the four corners of the original building (photo

206-9); and the change in flooring direction from north-south to east-west at the point

84


where the ell is attached to the main house with short lengths of assorted light framing

material (photo 206-10). When this small structure stood alone, the garret was accessed

via a steep staircase, or a ladder, on the west side of the jambless fireplace. The

throat of this opening is now covered over with plywood (photo 206-11).

Room 206 provides a clear view of the evolution of the house in total. The two bents

that were added to the east end of the house are visible, as is the fact that bent III was

shifted east from its original position to allow for the width of the center hallway (photo

206-2).

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206-1 view from southwest corner, room 207 and roof structure; dotted line at south

gable end rafter of original five-bent structure, note the different collar ties

I

I

II

II

III

III

206-2 looking south; marriage marks in red; arrow to main attic access

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206-3 nails holding rafter of main house to top plate

206-4 collar tie joint

87


206-5 door to garret, standing open

206-6 batten detail

206-7 latch on door between 203 and 206 206-8 latch on 204 with broken plate

88


206-9 knee brace at southwest corner of

original five-bent building

206-10 looking south; change in flooring direction

89


206-11 covered stair throat, northwest corner

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ROOM 207, SERVANTS’ ROOM

Description: Room 207 is the northeast corner of 206, divided from the rest of the

garret by walls that appear to be the first rips off of trees sent to a sawmill, arranged

vertically. The outside of the room, the live side of these off-cuts, is whitewashed

(photo 207-1). The room is 11’ 6” wide, slightly more than half the width of the garret,

and 13’ deep.

The flooring is a continuation of the flooring in 206.

The walls are clad with riven lath nailed to the vertical boards, plaster, and then a 1/4”

thick cardboard-type material that has a two-layer, dense cellulose core. The

outermost layer is a printed wallpaper (photo 207-2).

The ceiling is the same combination of treatments as the walls.

Window: A window at the gable end, to the east of the chimney, is the same as

described in 206 (photo 207-3).

There is not an extant door.

Hardware: The doorway, which is at the southwest corner of 207, shows paint ghosts

from either H or HL hinges on the exterior (photo 207-4).

Systems: None

Evolution: The census recorded no names beyond the head of household prior to 1850,

so it is hard to know exactly whose room was up in the garret above the summer

kitchen. Based on those records, William Pitcher owned two slaves in 1790. His son

John W. Pitcher owned two slaves in 1800 and 1810. The 1820 census lists two

slaves, a boy under 14 and a man of over 45. In 1820, there were also two

“foreigners” in the Pitcher household. After the abolition of slavery in 1827, the

Pitchers consistently had servants and other hired labor. In 1840, there was a “free

colored male 10-24” living in the house who could conceivably have been one of the

3

slaves in 1820; there was also a “free colored female 24-36” in residence. These two

may have been living in the house in 1830, but the census data for that year were not

specific as to race.

3

1840 United States Census

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207-1 outside of 207 wall, vertical log splits with riven lath visible

207-2 view from inside 207, toward upstairs hall (203)

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207-3 north wall; boxed chimney; wallpaper, pressed cellulose board, whitewashed planks

207-4 looking north at 207; arrows to H or HL

ghosts

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ATTIC: MAIN HOUSE

The attic of the main house is accessed by climbing up the main house roof sheathing

in the garret of the ell (206) and climbing through a small opening (photo attic-1). The

sheathing boards visible from the garret are tightly spaced and do not have nail holes,

which would have been present if this area was ever covered with shingles. The roof

structure appears to be consistent throughout the main section of the house, implying

that it was put on AFTER the addition to the east end, and at the same time that the

ell was attached. The rafters, as in the garret, are slightly tapered to a bridle or lap

joint (photo attic-2). The collar ties are attached to the rafters with lapped half-dovetail

joints (photo attic-3). The ends of the rafters are nailed to the top plates. The western

end of the attic, above Room 201, has planks laid over the collar ties, perhaps to allow

for more storage early on. The rest of the attic, above the center hall area, the dormer

room, and Room 204 has lath attached to the bottom of the collar ties and plaster

keys visible beneath.

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attic-1 access

attic-2 bridle or lap joint at peak

95


attic-3 lapped half-dovetail joint on collar tie

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INTERIOR CONDITION ASSESSMENT AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The current condition of the Pitcher farmhouse is such that a conventional room-byroom

condition assessment is not possible at this time. In order to get to that point, it

is recommended that all 20th-century materials, systems, and adaptations be removed

from the house.

That the house remains standing is a testament to the original builders. The roof and

rafters are in good condition. There are no obvious leaks or water damage. The top

plates and posts where visible are also undamaged. The main section of the house is

relatively square and stable, the exception being the front hall area. The failure of the

central joist, due to the concrete slab outside, caused the floor to sag significantly and

cracks to open up in the plaster walls on either side of the entry hall. The post at the

northeast corner of the ell has been replaced with a temporary pressure-treated 6”x6”,

and there is reason to believe that the sill is no longer extant. Removal of all electric

wires, ceiling cladding, drywall, and layers of material atop the original flooring will allow

for proper inspection of the conditions of the building.

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GREEN RENOVATION RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE PITCHER FARMSTEAD

The Pitcher Farmstead presents a unique opportunity as a model for sustainable

preservation/rehabilitation to balance retaining historic fabric with “green” technology

and efficiency.

Due to the structure’s 20th-century identity as an auxiliary building, it has been passed

over for modern interventions. It is nearly all historic fabric. From this position it is

possible to look at how best to carefully insert some modern systems, strategies, and

materials while respectfully leaving those that have worked for more than 250 years.

The property, along with the Heermance Farmstead is one of the earliest established

farmsteads in northern Dutchess County. For more than 250 years, the agricultural

identity of this property has been maintained; the land is still providing food crops for

New York City as it did in the 18 th century. The house may be the oldest surviving

example of Dutch-style timber framing in the Town of Red Hook. Alterations to the

house in the second half of the 18 th century are consistent with local patterns

reflecting an influx of German immigrants after 1712 and the improvement of fortunes

that extremely good soil allowed them.

Property Description

Pitcher Lane is a quiet road that runs east-west through a valley that has supported

subsistence farms and woodlots, fruit farms, dairy farms, and now has fields of rye,

corn and alfalfa; orchards of apples; acres of blueberries; asparagus and other

vegetables for sale at farmers’ markets up and down the valley. There are only a

dozen houses on the road; most are clustered at the east end where Pitcher Lane

meets Route 9, a two-lane truck route. The southern 1/3 of the Pitcher Farmstead

property is open field; behind the barn complex and running the width of the property

is a marshy area with a seasonal stream; and the north half of the property is divided

between open field and woods.

Outbuildings

The remaining outbuildings of the farmstead include a horse shed, corncrib, and barn

complex, constructed on the foundation of a much earlier structure, the core of which

is a 19th-century English-style hay barn. Attached to the east side is a concrete silo;

to the north a 20th-century two-story structure with calf pens and a basketball hoop;

98


to the west, and one level down, a concrete-floored milking parlor; and on the south

side, an attached wing for storage and also lockers for farm workers.

Building Description

The building is a south facing, one-and-a-half story, five-fenestration bay, eleven-bent,

Dutch-style, framed wooden structure with a side gable roof. It is 45’ across the front

and 25’ deep. The house has a 16’x16’ one-story, side gable addition off the west

end, and a perpendicular ell, 22’ wide and 27’ deep that extends north at the east end.

The main house sits on a foundation of dry-laid bluestone. The siding is cementitious

asbestos shingle in fair to poor condition. Where it is compromised, there is asphalt

shingle siding visible beneath. The sheathing material is vertically sawn 1”x12” that

bears paint lines and nail holes suggesting it had an earlier use installed as clapboard.

The roof is standing seam metal.

Condition Assessment

The Pitcher house has been unoccupied since 2000 and received little attention in the

century prior to that due its use as a seasonal worker or tenant farmer dwelling after

about 1885. The condition of the building is fair. The roof does not leak though the

chimneys are in need significant repair, having been compromised by biological growth,

human intervention, and the sacrificial nature of lime-based mortars. The siding can be

patched and reattached as needed, but the sills, particularly in the northeast corner of

the ell and on the south side, are likely in need of total replacement. The foundation

appears to be in largely good condition under the main house, with the exception of a

bulging area in the south wall of the cellar that appears to be infill of an earlier

doorway. Due to the position of the house, directly at grade, it is not possible at this

time to assess the condition of the foundation sections B2 and B4.

The interior condition appears far worse than it is. The structure is solid, but the

finishes are damaged. The plaster walls downstairs, made of a fragile blend of clay,

slaked lime, and animal hair (likely ox), have suffered at the hands of vandals. The

walls are mostly filled with nogging, split lath that serves as a matrix for clay mixed

with chopped straw. In some places, notably the last 8’ of the east gable end of the

main house, and the first 8’ where the ell attaches on the north side, the infill is of

poorly fired brick and lime-less clay mortar. Walls upstairs in the main section of the

house are finished with a combination of wallboard, horizontally applied hand-planed

99


tongue-and-groove planks with a quirked bead, and a lime coating applied directly over

plaster. These walls are infilled as below, except for Room 103, directly over the front

hall. This room has no infill at all along 2/3 of the south wall due to the reconfiguration

of the house circa 1775, when the center hall was created where none had been

before.

Existing Systems

The existing systems are primitive. There is an oil-fired, hot-air furnace attached to

ductwork that serves the downstairs only. A modified 55-gallon oil drum is also

attached to the ductwork for burning wood as an auxiliary heat source. The furnace

and oil tank in the cellar appear to be at least 50 years old.

Most rooms have only an overhead light fixture with a pull chain switch. The wiring is

BX and some Romex; in the west addition and the ell, some wiring is in the walls. In the

rest of the house the wiring is exposed; either run through conduit, stapled to the face

of trim, or loose wires snaked across rooms. Plumbing is limited to two areas: the

16’x16’ west gable end addition and the full bathroom that was created in what had

been the north end of the center hall.

Previous Renovation/Preservation Strategies

The only changes to the building made in the last quarter of the 20th century,

nominally made in the interest of efficiency or at least efficacy, are that the exterior

doors were replaced with metal clad units, and the windows, except for the front

sidelights and five sets of single-hung 6/6 sashes, were replaced with 1/1 double-hung

units and triple-track aluminum storms.

Preservation efforts since 2004 include painting of the roof with fibered aluminum roof

coating; installation of padlocks and “No Trespassing” signs; and the jacking and

stabilization of a 25’ long 10”x14” floor joist in the cellar beneath the center hall,

which had dropped two feet after the sill rotted away due to a concrete stoop being

poured directly against it.

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Original Green Design Strategies

In the mid-18th century, the builders of the William Pitcher farmhouse employed design

logic and strategies based on their experience with the climate and the availability of

resources in the area.

• Passive Solar

The house faces south, oriented to the property lines rather than square to the road,

with the bulk of the glazing on that facade, in order to maximize solar gain. There are

only three windows on the north side, two narrow casements to light the garret of the

ell, and a later small 6/6 in the addition on the west end. It would seem too that the

placement of the barns in relation to the house was likely intentional to provide a

buffer against the north wind.

• Use of Local Materials

The primary framing members are 25’ lengths of poplar approximately 10”x14”, which

was abundant in the area in the 18th century. The wall infill and de facto insulation of

the walls—clay, straw and riven sticks—would have been harvested nearby. The soil on

the banks above the Hudson River, especially at Tivoli, is rich in clay deposits, making it

likely that the bricks in the walls and chimneys were locally made. By about 1730

there were sawmills on both the Sawkill Creek, less than a mile to the south of the

Pitcher farm, and the White Clay Kill at Hoffman’s Mills, about 3.5 miles to the

northeast. Either mill could have been the source for the slab sheathing on the roof,

the siding planks, and the flooring, which ranges from 14” to 25” wide.

Iron nails and hardware might have been wrought by blacksmith Ryer Schermerhorn,

who had purchased land from Barent Van Benthuysen in 1741 and operated half a mile

to the east of the Pitcher farm.

• Low/No-VOC Materials and Finishes

The mortars and plasters in the house are clay and lime-based. Wall finishes upstairs

are lime-based with a protein binder, likely casein. Wall finishes downstairs are a

thinner whitewash with wallpaper on top. Doors, windows, and other woodwork are

predominantly linseed oil-based. The original floorboards are unfinished.

Recommendations

★Site Work: Excavation and Landscaping

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The grade is currently too high around the house to allow for adequate drainage;

footing drains should be installed around the perimeter of the building along with a

catchment system for use in irrigation.

Deciduous trees should be planted on the south side for summer shading, and a screen

of evergreens on the north side of the house to provide wind buffering in the winter.

★Building Envelope

The Pitcher Farmhouse has performed well for a long time, with very little attention.

Modifications to the structure should be undertaken sensitively and with respect for

the craftsmanship of the original builder.

• The hand-crimped, standing seam roof is made of heavy gauge metal and is in

good condition. It should be coated with a light colored elastomeric epoxy, which will

add years to the viability of the roof itself and also reduce the cooling load.

• The cementitious asbestos siding should be carefully removed, along with the

asphalt shingles beneath and the sheathing as needed, in order to access the sills for

structural repairs. The sheathing will need to be inspected and patched.

• Felt paper should be stapled to the sheathing as a water-resistive barrier. Locally

sourced softwood like hemlock, treated with a borate solution and then coated on all

surfaces with an oil-based primer before installation would be an appropriate siding

material.

• The chimneys need to be repointed and/or reconstructed using a mortar that

approximates the historic recipe originally used, but with the addition of white

Portland cement for strength.

• Existing sashes should be rehabilitated and returned to service with appropriate

sealing and weather striping.

The insulation strategy for the building needs to be handled creatively in order

to get the maximum R-value while taking into consideration different issues,

structural and aesthetic, of each part of the house with regard to original material

and desired finishes. Since the attic above the main house will never be living space,

dry cellulose blown in (at R-3.2 per inch) as deep as possible would provide the

greatest benefit for the most reasonable cost. The garret of the north ell is open and

has a high ceiling in contrast to the rest of the upstairs. In order to retain this feeling

of spaciousness, polyisocyanurate sheets should be installed between the rafters

(minimum 4” at R-6.8 per inch), applying wire lath and plaster over the insulation and

leaving the face of the rafter proud of the surface. The garret knee walls are also

102


completely uninsulated, and due to the wide spacing between bents and irregular

framing where the two sections are joined, I think that polyisocyanurate covered with

lath and plaster is the best option for those areas as well. In places where the infill is

not compromised, it should be left as it is, spot insulating with Roxsul or another preor

post-consumer recycled insulation, and then patching the existing plaster. The

cellar ceiling ought to be fitted with polyisocyanurate as an insulator and a vapor

barrier between the dirt-floored cellar and the living space above.

★Systems

The Pitcher Farmstead could be renovated to operate without any fossil fuel

consumption.

•A solar array could be installed behind the barn complex; the land back there is

seasonally marsh and thus not desirable for crops or livestock. The electricity needs

of the property could be met entirely by solar.

•For heating and cooling, a high-velocity small duct system coupled with a ground

source heat pump with a vertical closed loop set-up would disturb the structure very

little. The air handler would be housed in either the cellar or the attic.

•The addition of a desuperheater, or secondary heat exchanger, to the ground source

heat pump system, to harness heat produced by the heat pump but not used to heat

the house, can provide hot water. This strategy requires some electricity, which

would be provided by the solar array, in the winter but is completely efficient in the

warmer months.

★Other Green Strategies

Simple strategies should be installed for continued efficiency: energy efficient

appliances, low-flow plumbing fixtures, CFC or LED lighting, programmable lighting and

temperature controls, the continued use of low or no-VOC finishes.

Use Scenarios

At 3600 sq. feet, the Pitcher farmhouse is 1000 sq. feet larger than the average

American home built in 2013. Evolving over two centuries, the building made sense in

relation to the needs of its inhabitants, both spacial and social. Census records show

that at any given time there were 3-14 people living in the house; it was always a

multi-generational, working household. Leaving the existing floor plan, the house could

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e used as a single family dwelling. Without altering the floor plan significantly, it could

also be converted for use as a main house with an auxiliary duplex apartment.

Conclusion

The challenge in renovating the Pitcher Farmstead is to make it an efficient structure

without compromising its historic integrity. Due to the advantages of the site and the

raw state that the building is in, the Pitcher house can be improved upon exponentially

and renovated to sustain itself without any loss of character.

As expectations change about what we need to be comfortable, how we want to live

and work, and how desperately we need to protect the environment, the conversation

between preservation and sustainability needs to progress. Ultimately, vernacular

buildings will not be preserved unless they can be operated as efficiently (taking into

account embodied energy, reparability, quality of materials) as new construction.

Ideally, this house could be used in the future as a model for respectful and sustainable

preservation.

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WILLIAM PITCHER FARMSTEAD

RED HOOK, NEW YORK

Deed Chronology and Maps

Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


DEED HISTORY AND MAPS

CHRONOLOGY

1688 Pieter Schuyler

1717 Barent Staats

Lot Six- 3,000 acres

1725 Barent, Pieter, Jacob & Abraham Van Benthuysen and Andries Heermanse

Lot Six- 3,000 acres

1746 Pieter Pitsier(sic)

Small Lot 7 of Lot Six- 550 acres

1768 William Bitcher(sic)

South half of his father’s farm- 275 acres

1800 William Pitcher dies at age 75

John W. and Philip Pitcher inherit all of their father’s farm

1806 John W. and Philip Pitcher divide the farm

John W. and Catherine Pitcher acquire more property; parts of original Peter

Pitcher farm and land south of Pitcher Lane

1859 John W. Pitcher dies at age 83

Andrew K. and Abraham Pitcher purchase their father’s property from their

siblings and divide it between them. Andrew K. has the east parcel, including

the house.

1874 Abraham Pitcher dies at age 67

1875 Abraham Pitcher’s farmhouse burns down.

Abraham’s heirs sell his farm (131 acres) to Francis and Margaret Elting of Cairo,

Greene County, New York

1881 Andrew K. Pitcher sells his farm (80 acres) to Henry S. Elting, son of Francis and

Margaret

1882 Andrew’s daughter, Sarah Jansen Pitcher, marries Henry S. Elting

1885 Death of Andrew K. Pitcher, the last Pitcher to live in the house


1905 Henry S. Elting inherits the farm of Abraham Pitcher upon the death of his

mother

1927 Florence Elting and her husband, Ezra Cookingham, inherit the farm upon the

death of her father, Henry (approximately 210 acres)

1942 Florence and Ezra Cookingham sell the entire property to Victory Farms, Inc.

date unknown- acquired by Hans Umland

1950 Hans Umland to Eleanor Bonn (possibly a relative)

1955 Eleanor Bonn to Robert G. Greig (210 acres)

1956 Robert G. Greig to Jesse and Helen Salisbury

1956 Jesse and Helen Salisbury to T. Roosevelt Allen, a Westchester real estate

broker and builder (Larchmont)

1959 T. Roosvelt Allen to Hunter Holding, a banker (Larchmont)

1972 Hunter Holding to Frank A. Migliorelli and Salvatore James Leone (Pelham)

2000 Frank A. Migliorelli and Salvatore James Leone to Doriedale Farm, LLC


MAP 1

Lower Hudson Valley Patents from Old Dutchess Forever! Dr. Henry Noble MacCracken,

Hastings House, New York, NY, 1956 (endpaper)


MAP 2

Dutchess County Wards Map from Old Dutchess Forever! Dr. Henry Noble MacCracken,

Hastings House, New York, NY, 1956 (endpaper)


MAP 3

Peter Schuyler’s Patent after 1718


MAP 4

1740 Cadwallader Colden Germantown Map showing parcels owned by Peter and Adam

Pitcher, sons of Johannes Hermann Betzer (courtesy of the Germantown History

Department)


MAP 5

Division of Lot 2 & Lot 6- April 1, 1747 attached to deed of Barent Van Benthuysen, his sons

and nephew, Andries Heermanse (Note: Piet. Pitsier (sic) had purchased small Lot 7 March

17, 1746/7, and his brother Adam purchased 2/3 of small Lot 8)


MAP 6

1746

Detail of 1746 division of Van Benthuysen/Heermance large Lot 6 Heermance and Peter

Pitcher house on the road to Hoffman’s Landing


MAP 7

1768 Second Generation division of Lot 7 Peter Pitcher to sons Adam, 30, and William, 43.


1800 Third Generation division of south half of Lot 7 William Pitcher

to sons John W. , 24 and Phillip, 26

MAP 8


1798 Alexander Thompson map detail red arrow to William Pitcher’s house

(courtesy of Historic Hudson Valley)

MAP 9


1799 Philip Reichert Map showing Hoffman-Van Vredenburgh- Pitcher property

relationship

MAP 10


1815 Red Hook road map by John Cox, based on Thompson’s 1797 survey

MAP 11


MAP 12

1850 Town of Red Hook arrow to John W. Pitcher, son Abraham to the southwest, nephew

William W. Pitcher to the east having inherited Philip Pitcher’s house


1867 Town of Red Hook detail arrow to Andrew K. Pitcher, brother Abraham to the

southwest; fourth generation

MAP 13


MAP 14

1938 US Geological Survey arrow to Pitcher homestead, owned by Florence Elting, greatgreat-granddaughter

of William Pitcher and her husband, Ezra Cookingham


2014 Parcel Access Map with 1746 overlay

MAP 15


MAP 16

Map re-drawn by Frank J. Teal, Surveyor

(1867-1949) John W. Pitcher’s portion of

his father’s farm, divided between JWP

and brother, Philip in 1806: star and arrow

indicate Pitcher farmhouse

Parcel Access 2014

159 Pitcher Lane, Red Hook, New York


MAP 17

Survey of lands of John W. Pitcher- January 17, 1860 Division of “Homestead Farm

of John W. Pitcher”- east 52 acres to son, Abraham; west 48 acres to son, Andrew


1943 survey map for Robert G. Greig

red dot- John W. Pitcher Farm

yellow dot- Philip Pitcher Farm

green dot- approximate location of original Peter Pitcher house (1746)

MAP 18


GENERATION I GENERATION II GENERATION III GENERATION IV GENERATION V GENERATION VI GENERATION VII

Peter b.1750

Wilhelm b.1756

Margaretha b.1762

Heinrich b.1762 Helen C. b.1801

Catherina b.1764 Rev. John Henry b.1805 Laura b.1846

Elizabeth b. 1771 Abraham Pitcher (1807-1874)

m. Eliza Sanderson (1806-1899)

William Hoffman b.1847

Adelaide Harris Elting

(1882-1967) m. Harry Arnold

Anna Christina b.1693 Maria Catherina b.1720 Philip Pitcher (1774-1844) m.

Catherine Wilson

Rev. William (1810-1833) Anthony Hoffman b.1850 Lottie Hoffman b.1884

Johannes Herman Betzer

(1669- aft.1724) m.

Elsen Franz (1666-aft.

1714)

Peter Betzer (1697-1768)

m. Anna Catherina Philips

LOT #7

William Pitcher (1725-1800)

m.Magdalena Donsbach b.1728-

m.Anna Maria Richter b.1732

LOT #7 SOUTH HALF

John W. Pitcher (1776-1859) m.

Catherine Kipp (1775-1844)

Andrew Kittle Pitcher

(1812-1885) m.

MaryAnn Hoffman (1814-1876)

Sarah J. Pitcher

(1852-1922) m.

Henry Snyder Elting

(1855-1927)

Florence Margurite

Elting (1887-1955) m.

Ezra Burger

Cookingham

(1885-1966)

Anna Gertrude b.1700 Magdalena b.1727 Anna b. 1779 Hoffman b.1856

Adam Betzer (1702-1760)

m. Catryn Funck LOT #8

Gertraudt b.1729 Jacob b. 1781

Catherina b.1704 Christina b.1732

Elisabeth Catherina b.1706 Elizabeth b.1736

Johannes Theiss b.1708 Adam Pitcher (1738-1768)

m. Anna Maria Richter

LOT #7 NORTH HALF

PITCHER GENEALOGY


APPENDIX IV

Pitcher Farmstead

Red Hook, New York

Drawings

Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


N


south elevation original 9-bent

structure

east elevation

original 5-bent

structure

5-bent

gable end original 9-bent

structure

gable end original

5-bent structure


Pitcher Farmstead

Red Hook, New York

Masonry Analysis


Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


CONTENTS

Introduction

Methodology

Findings

Conclusions

Appendices

Sample Key

RILEM Test

Capillary Absorption Test

Mortar and Plaster Analysis

__________________________________________________________

INTRODUCTION

This report contains the results of brick, mortar, and plaster analysis conducted at the

Pitcher Farmstead, located in Red Hook, New York.

The purpose of this study is to: (1) compare the porosity and absorption rates of

bricks used in chimneys from those used as nogging, (2) determine the types of

mortar, the ratios of binder to aggregate, and the general characteristics—similarities

and differences—between mortars in the chimney and in the brick nogging of the wall

infill of Room 105, and (3) analyze plasters from different rooms of the house to try to

determine areas that were likely constructed or renovated contemporaneously.


METHODOLOGY

The testing project began with the removal of bricks, mortar and plaster samples on 14

November 2014. One brick sample was taken from each of the two chimneys (Room

105 and Room 207), one brick sample was taken from the each of the two areas that

had that material as wall nogging (Room 105 and Room 107); one chimney mortar

sample (Room 105) and one wall nogging mortar sample (Room 105); and twelve

plaster samples from various spots throughout the house.

RILEM Test 11. 4 One brick from near the top of the chimney at the north gable end

of Room 207 and one nogging brick from inside the east wall of Room 107 were

selected and removed. The RILEM tube was affixed to each brick in turn, sealed with

putty, and filled with water. At intervals up to one hour, data was collected reflecting

the absorption of water through capillary pathways in the brick.

Experiment 10: Penetration of Water One chimney brick from above the mantle in

Room 105 and one nogging brick from inside the wall in Room 105 were selected and

removed. Both bricks were placed on end in a pan of water and over the course of

three hours the rate of vertical absorption was recorded.

Mortar Analysis Samples of mortar were collected from the chimney of Room 105, and

from the between the wall nogging bricks of Room 105. The samples were tested

using the wet-chemical method: Each sample was crushed with a mortar and pestle and

digested in white vinegar and water. The samples were allowed to digest for 12 hours,

after which they were filtered using a funnel and paper filter. The fines and sand that

remained in the filter paper were dried on cookie sheets over the hot air vent in my

guest room for 24 hours. Samples were then sieved and weighed; proportions of

aggregate size were recorded and graphed.

Plaster Analysis Samples of plaster were collected from Rooms 102, 103, 105, 107,

201, 202, 203, 207. The samples were also tested using the wet-chemical method.


FINDINGS

The RILEM tests showed that poorly fired brick, of the kind commonly used in nonstructural

applications like nogging, absorbs more water. The nogging brick (107)

absorbed more than three times the water than the chimney brick (207) did.

Experiment 10: Penetration of Water confirmed the results of the RILEM tests, with the

quick deterioration of the nogging brick (105), as opposed to the relative stability of

the chimney brick (105). Given how poorly each of the nogging bricks performed when

exposed to water shows, however, that water has not been able to get into the walls

of Rooms 105 and 107. If the building envelope had been compromised, there would

have been significant damage and undeniable failure of the infill.

The Mortar Analysis showed that the chimney mortar (105) is a lime-based mortar with

a high percentage of very fine sand and silt, while the wall nogging mortar is clay-based

also, with a high-percentage of very fine sand and even more silt. This finding suggests

that lime would have been saved for use in structural applications.

The modified Mortar Analysis used for twelve plaster samples produced these findings:

1. The rooms downstairs (102, 103, 105 and to a lesser extent 107) all have a

brown coat of plaster that is similar in color, texture and hardness and contains

a large amount of red animal hair (ox?).

2. Rooms 105 and 107 have a gray coat of plaster on top of the brown, which is

radically different. The gray plasters have a much higher percentage of coarser

sand.

3. The rooms upstairs (201, 202, 203, 207) have plasters that are very similar in

color, texture, and hardness. All of the samples have a thick layer, or as many

as seven layers, of whitewash. The notable absence is the relatively bare

surface of 203 NE. The upstairs samples contain no animal hair, except for a

few stray fibers in the sample from 206.


CONCLUSION

Analysis of the collected samples show that plastering inside the Pitcher house

happened in three different events. The main floor brown coats are similar as regards

aggregate size distribution and hair content, suggesting that they were done

contemporaneously. The exception to this is Sample 107B from the east wall of room

107. This sample has the same aggregate distribution as the other main floor brown

coats, but has no hair. This supports the theory that the ell was a separate freestanding

structure. This similarity and dissimilarity in the recipe implies brown coats in

the ell and the main house were done at different times, likely before the two

structures were joined in about 1770.

Samples of gray coat from 105 and 107 have a much higher percentage of large

aggregate and very little silt, especially as compared to the main floor brown coat

samples.

The upstairs was a more utilitarian space and the plaster may have been applied later.

The coating upstairs contains about the same percentage of sand as downstairs, but

has a higher lime content, and no hair.


107

106

104

101 102

105

103


East Exterior: exposed

chimney back;

brick and mortar analysis,

RILEM test on brick (not done)

Basement: top view of jambless

fireplace support stone;

mortar analysis, RILEM test on

stone? (not done)

Photo 102: south wall, plaster on

riven lathe;

plaster analysis


Photo 105(a): south wall,

brick nogging; brick and

mortar analysis

Photo 105(b): east wall

fireplace; brick and mortar

analysis

Photo 202: south wall; plaster

analysis


Photo 203(a): top of stairs; plaster

analysis

Photo 205: east upstairs

fireplace; mortar and brick

analysis

Photo 206: south end of ell;

plaster analysis to see how it

compares to other plaster in the

building


Photo 207: garret room; mortar and

brick analysis and RILEM test on

brick of chimney


Experiment 10 Penetration of Water: Capillary Action

Introduction

On 14 November 2014, two sample bricks were collected from the William

Pitcher farmhouse for the purpose of performing Experiment 10 Penetration of

Water: Capillary Action from the Laboratory Manual for Architectural

Conservators. The purpose of this experiment was to compare the wicking

abilities of nogging brick, which is generally poorly-fired versus chimney brick,

which would be of higher quality.

Sample 1 is a piece of a nogging brick from inside the south wall of room 105.

It is approximately 6”x4”x 1.5” and irregularly formed. It is pale pink and lumpy

with small, smooth inclusions.


Experiment 10 Penetration of Water: Capillary Action

Sample 2 is a piece of a brick from the chimney on the east wall of room 105.

It is more smoothly formed. The piece is approximately 4.5”x2”x2”. It has a

pitted finish on one face and a wiped finish on the other. There are many voids

and folds visible on the broken edge. There are many inclusions of varying

sizes. Tiny, gray, angular pieces of stone; tiny fragments of brick; large (1cm)

rounded pebbles.

Observations

After two minutes in 1 cm of water, Sample 1 began to deteriorate, spalling and

calving like a glacier. Both samples initially absorbed water at the same rate,

but Sample 1 absorbed the water in an irregular pattern, some areas wicking

higher than others.

At three hours the bottom of Sample 1 had completely disintegrated. The

sample when wet is burgundy and brown and gray. The inside reveals some

small aggregate, but appears to be mostly clay.

Sample 2, after a small amount of deterioration early on in the testing,

remained stable. The sample is bright, classic brick red when wet. The outside

3/16” can be scraped away in a paste, but the inside is still firm at the end of

three hours.


Experiment 10 Penetration of Water: Capillary Action

Time Sample 1-

Wall Brick

105

Sample 2-

Chimney Brick

105

1 1.5 1.5

2 2 2

3 2.25 2

4 2.25 2.25

5 2.5 2.25

10 2.5 2.5

15 2.5 2.5

20 2.5 2.5

25 3 2.5

30 3 2.75

60 4 3

90 6 3

120 6 3

150 7 3.5

180 7 3.5


Experiment 10 Penetration of Water: Capillary Action

7.00

Penetration of Water by Capillary Action

Absorption (cm)

5.25

3.50

1.75

0.00

1 2 3 4 5 10 15 20 25 30 60 90 120 150 180

Time (minutes)

Sample 1-Wall Brick 105 Sample 2-Chimney Brick 105

Notes

Sample 1: 105 Wall Nogging Brick appears to have been poorly fired, if it was fired at

all. However, after more than 200 years, the nogging in this wall is in fine condition,

which means that there are no leaks or rising damp issues, in this area at least.

The absorption behavior of both samples is consistent with that of the chimney and

nogging brick used in the RILEM test, with the chimney bricks being better fired and

thus less absorptive.


MEASUREMENT OF WATER ABSORPTION UNDER LOW PRESSURE

RILEM TEST METHOD NO. 11.4

Introduction

RILEM (Reunion Internationale des Laboratoires D'Essais et de Recherches sur les Materiaux

et les Constructions), with headquarters in Paris, is the International Union of Testing and

Research Laboratories for Materials and Structures. As with our American Society for Testing

and Materials (ASTM), Technical Committees are formed within RILEM to develop standard

methods for measuring properties and evaluating the performance and durability of many

different building materials.

One such technical committee, Commission 25-PEM, has developed tests to measure the

deterioration of stone and to assess the effectiveness of treatment methods. The standard tests

drafted by Commission 25-PEM fall within several categories, including methods for

determining internal cohesion (111.), for measuring mechanical surface properties (IV.), and

for detecting the presence and movement of water (11.). Within category II., is Test Method

No. 11.4, designed to measure the quantity of water absorbed by the surface of a masonry

material over a definite period of time.

RILEM Test Method 11.4 provides a simple means for measuring the rate at which water

moves through porous materials such as masonry. The test can be performed at the site or in

the laboratory and can be used to measure vertical or horizontal water transport. Water

permeability measurements obtained in the laboratory can be used to characterize

unweathered, untreated masonry. Measurements made at the site (or on samples removed for

laboratory testing) can be used to assess the degree of weathering that the material has

undergone. Test Method 11.4 can also be used to determine the degree of protection afforded

by a water repellent treatment. A description of the equipment and procedure for conducting

this test is provided in paragraphs below. The theoretical basis on which the method is based

and the several applications of test data are discussed.

Theory

Because masonry building materials are porous, they are all somewhat permeable to water.

The interior structure of a masonry material is a system of fine interconnected pores. Wetting

by liquid water involves capillary conduction (suction) through this pore system, proceeding

along both vertical and horizontal pathways. Vertical transport occurs when water enters as

ground water at the base of a structure or as rain water through leaking gutters. Penetration of

driving rain into wall surfaces results in horizontal transport. (Under actual conditions, the

amount of rain penetration depends on prevailing wind conditions as well as on the

composition and condition of the exposed surface.)

When liquid water comes into contact with a masonry surface, wetting proceeds through the

material as a front. Accurate measurements of the advance of this wetting front made on a

variety of masonry building materials have demonstrated that the characteristic wetting rate

and pattern of each material are directly related to its capillary structure and port size

distribution. In fact, rate constants have been measured for brick, limestones and other


masonry materials. RILEM Test Method 11.4 provides a simple method for measuring the

volume of water absorbed by a material within a specified time period.

Equipment

The equipment necessary for measuring water

absorption under low pressure is simple. The test

can be performed at the site or in the laboratory

with a test apparatus available in two forms. One

is designed for application to vertical surfaces

and measures horizontal transport of water, or,

its resistance to wind-driven rain penetration.*

A second form is designed for application to

horizontal surfaces and measures vertical

transport. Figure 1 illustrates the pipe-like

apparatus designed for vertical surfaces. Its flat,

circular brim (at the bottom end of the pipe) is

affixed to the masonry surface by interposing a

piece of putty. The open, upper end of the pipe

has an area of 0.554 cm2. The vertical tube is

graduated from 0 to 5 ml (cm3). The total height

of the column of water applied to the surface,

measured from the center point of the flat,

circular brim to the topmost gradation, is 12. cm.

The area of absorption on the substrate is 5.067

cm2.The apparatus designed for application to

horizontal surfaces, see Figure 2, is similar to the

one for vertical surfaces as described above.

*It should be noted that a standard method for

measuring water penetration and leakage

through masonry is described in ASTM E 514.

The ASTM test method is intended to evaluate

wall design and workmanship as well as the

degree of weathering and the performance of

water repellent treatment. It is therefore

necessary to conduct the procedure on a test wall

built with a minimum height or length of four

feet. The wall is exposed to water (3.4 gallons

per square feet per hour) in a test chamber for

four hours.

Procedure

The testing apparatus is affixed by interposing a


tape of putty between the flat, circular brim of the pipe and the surface of the masonry

material. To ensure adhesion, manual pressure is exerted on the cylinder. Water is then added

through the upper, open end of the pipe until the column reaches the 0 gradation mark. The

quantity of water absorbed by the material during a specified period of time is read directly

from the graduated tube. The periods of time appropriate for the test depend on the porosity of

the material on which the measurement is being made; generally 5, 10, 15, 20, 30 and 60

minute intervals provide the most useful data. In many cases, it may be important to measure

water absorption through the mortar joint as well as through the surface of the brick (or natural

stone) substrate.

Report

Results of the test measurements are presented in the form of a water absorption graph with

the volume of water absorbed in cubic centimeters reported as a function of time in minutes.

The masonry surface tested must be mentioned in the report.

Applications

Water has long been associated with deterioration processes affecting masonry materials. Its

presence within the interior pore structure of masonry can result in physical destruction if the

material undergoes wet/dry or freeze/thaw cycling. The latter is particularly damaging if the

masonry material has a high clay mineral content. Perhaps of greater importance is the fact

that the presence of moisture is a necessary precondition for most deterioration processes.

Pollutant gases are harmful when they are dissolved in water; fluorescence phenomena are

dependent on the migration of salts dissolved in water; moisture is a requirement for the

growth of biological organisms. Because of these factors, the water permeability of a masonry

material is related to its durability. Thus, results obtained using Test Method 11.4 can be used

to predict potential vulnerability of untreated, unweathered masonry materials to water-related

deterioration.

Test Method 11.4 also provides useful information when carried out on weathered masonry

surfaces. Water permeability of a material is affected when its surface is obscured by the

presence of atmospheric soiling or biological growth, or, when there are hygroscopic salts

within the interior. The formation of a weathering crust due to mineralogical changes

occurring on the exposed (weathered) surface may substantially affect water permeability

measurements. By comparing data obtained on masonry that has been exposed to the elements

with measurements made on unweathered samples, it is possible to measure the degree of

weathering that has occurred.

Finally, RILEM Test Method 11.4 can be used to evaluate the performance of a water

repellent treatment. An effective treatment should substantially reduce surficial permeability

of the masonry material to water. By so doing, the treatment will reduce the material's

vulnerability to water-related deterioration. A comparison of test results obtained on treated

masonry samples with those obtained on untreated samples provides information about the

degree of protection that can be provided by the water repellent treatment.

References


• Amoroso, G. and Fassina, V. Stone Decay and Conservation. Amsterdam: Elsevier

Science Publishers, 1983. (See especially Chapter 1, "Effects of Water and Soluble

Salts on Stone Decay".)

• Hochman, Harry. "Measuring Water Permeability of Masonry Walls" (Technical Note

N-1 179). National Civil Engineering Laboratory, August 1971.

• Sereda, P.J. and Feidman, R.H. "Wetting and Drying of Porous Materials" (Canadian

Building Digest 130). Ottawa: National Research Council of Canada, 1975.

• Sinner, Paulus; Winkler, Erhard; and Ibach, Matthias. "Permeability Measurements, an

Indication of the State of Weathering and Consolidation of Building Stone".

(Unpublished)

• Stambolov, T. and van Asperen de Boer, J.R.J. The Deterioration and Conservation of

Porous Building Materials and Monuments. Rome: ICCROM, 1976.

• Torraca, Giorgio. Porous Building Materials. Rome: ICCROM, 1981.

Compiled by Frances Gale, September, 1987.


RILEM TEST

INTRODUCTION

On 14 November 2014 two sample bricks were collected from the William Pitcher

farmhouse on Pitcher Lane in Red Hook, New York for the purpose of using the RILEM

Test Method 11.4 to determine the rate at which water moves through porous

materials.

fig. 1 sample 1 (Room 207 chimney brick)

fig. 2 sample 2 (Room 107 nogging brick)


Sample 1(fig.1) is a piece of chimney brick, collected from Room 207. It is

approximately 4”x4”x1.5”; medium to dark pink; with visible folds and large, white

inclusions. One face is pitted while the other has streaks as though it had been wiped

or screeded while wet.

Sample 2 (fig. 2) is a piece of nogging brick, collected from inside the east wall of Room

107. It is approximately 3”x3”x2”. It is medium to pale pink with some visible folds

and small voids. The sample appears to be relatively uniform in material and

consistency.

4

Time (min)

Water Absorption (cm3)

Chimney Brick

207

Nogging Brick

107

1 0.25 0.25

5 0.4 0.5

10 0.5 0.75

15 0.6 1.25

20 0.75 1.5

30 1 2

60 1.25 4

water absorption (cm3)

3

2

1

0

1 5 10 15 20 30 60

time (minutes)

Chimney Brick 207 Nogging Brick 107


NOTES

Both bricks may date to the original construction, circa 1750.

Both samples are irregular in shape, texture, appearance, and content.

Sample 1 appears to be more well-fired and to have inclusions of lime blebs.

OBSERVATIONS

Sample 2 absorbed more than three times as much water as Sample 1 over 60

minutes.

CONCLUSION

The dramatically higher rate of absorption in Sample 2 confirms anecdotal (and

documented) observations that poorly-fired, or “salmon” brick, is commonly used as

infill; where permeability is not a problem. The lower absorptive capacity of Sample 1

validates its use in the chimney, where both strength and resistance to moisture are

important.

Observable differences in the aggregate, lime content, and structure of the two

samples suggest that they were not made at the same time.


ARCHDES 597M Assignment #4 -Simple Mortar Analysis

Goals: To identify the proportions and characteristics of the three main components of historic

mortars; the binder, the fines and the aggregate. The binder, principally calcium carbonate

(CaCO₃), is dissolved in acid. The fines (clay and other fine particles) are separated while in

solution from the aggregate (typically sand). The procedure is designed mainly for historic lime

and sand mortars. To determine the proportions of cement in mortars, the calcimeter mortar

analysis should be followed; however this simple mortar analysis may provide some useful

information on the character of cement mortars.

Equipment and supplies: 400 ml beakers, 250 ml Erlenmeyer flasks, mortar and pestle,

funnels, filter paper (fast, med.), sieve set, 20% hydrochloric acid, 5% acetic acid, water,

analytical balance, sample dishes, stereomicroscope, wash bottle, safety eye wear.

Procedure:

1. Collect (3) samples (at least 10 grams.)

2. Examine the samples and record the characteristics: color, texture, hardness, inclusions,

etc.

3. Powder (2) samples for analysis w/ mortar & pestle. Save third for future reference.

4. Weigh each sample on a balance to .01g precision…..[our only go to .1 precision] Record

the weight on the data sheet.

5. Place each sample in a 250ml flask and dampen with water.

6. Add enough acid solution to cover sample. Avoid inhaling fumes. Observe and record

the reaction.

7. Add a drop of acid to determine if reaction is complete.

8. Label the filter papers to be used (one for aggregate…another for fines)with pencil with

your name and sample number

9. Weigh each filter paper and record on the data sheet.

10. Fold the papers into quarters in place in the funnels with a 400ml beaker below each.

11. Slowly add water to the sample flask.

12. Swirl to suspend fines

13. Slowly pour the liquid with the suspended fines into the filter paper, keeping the

aggregate in the flask.

14. Repeat 11 through 13 until the water runs clear.

15. After the water has completely drained, carefully remove the filter paper and dry it in the

oven.


16. Wash all the aggregate from the flask into the second set of filter papers.

17. After the water has completely drained, carefully remove the filter paper and dry it in the

oven.

18. Weigh the filter papers and with the dry fines. Record the weight.

19. Subtract the weight of the filter paper to determine the weight of the fines.

20. Weigh the filter papers and with the dry aggregate. Record the weight.

21. Subtract the weight of the filter paper to determine the weight of the aggregate.

22. Express the amount of fines and the amount of sand as percentages of the whole initial

sample weight. The amount of dissolved binder is determined by adding the weights of

the sand and the fines and subtracting from the total initial sample weight.

23. Examine the aggregate under stereomicroscope. Record the characteristics (color,

shape, size) of the particles and their relative distribution.

24. Sieve the aggregate in a standard sieve set. First weigh each sieve. Then add sample and

carefully shake. Reweigh each sieve. Then clean each sieve.

25. Express the weight of each particle size as a percentage of the whole.


Mortar Analysis

Sample # Sample 105a Chimney mortar

Sample Location

Room 105 east wall chimney

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes % of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 475.9 475.9 0


Mortar Analysis

Sample # Sample 105b Wall nogging

Sample Location

Room 105 south wall

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes % of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 102 S.

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 102 (west parlor) south wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Sample

Sample # 103 S

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 103 (hall) South wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 105 S. Brown

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 105 (east parlor) south wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 105 E

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 105 (east parlor) east wall, left of fireplace

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 105 S Gray

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 105 (east parlor) south wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 107 Brown

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 107 (ell kitchen) east wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 107 Gray

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 107 (ell kitchen) east wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 201 N

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 201 - west bedroom, north wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 202

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 202 (dormer room) under window

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 203 NE

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 203 (stair hall) north wall, east side

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 203 NW

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 203- stairs

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes% of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Plaster Analysis

Sample # 206 S.

Sample Location

Name Emily Majer

Date Nov 22, 2014

Room 206 South Wall

Sieve With Sand Without Sand Sand Particle sizes % of total

4 0 0 >4.75mm 0% gravel

8 0 0


Pitcher Farmstead: Downstairs Plaster Aggregate Distribution

40

30

20

10

0

gravel very coarse coarse medium coarse medium fine fine very fine silt

102 S 103 S 105 E 105 S G 105 S B 107 E B 107 E G


Pitcher Farmstead: Downstairs Plaster Aggregate Distribution

gravel

very coarse

coarse

medium coarse

medium fine

fine

very fine

silt

102 S 103 S 105 E 105 S G 105 S B 107 E B 107 E G

0 0 0 0 0 0 0

0 0 0 0 0 0 0

6 14 7 4 3 2 2

18 20 18 30 16 15 31

26 22 21 37 32 27 17

26 29 20 22 40 27 18

17 8 24 5 4 15 30

7 8 10 2 5 14 2

dissolved binder

fines

aggregate

7 8 12 0 9 6 4

2 0 2 0 5 1 1

91 91 86 100 86 93 95

color

tan tan tan gray tan/pink tan gray

notes

hair hair hair no hair hair no hair, straw some hairs

crumbly crumbly crumbly hard crumbly firm dry stiff


Pitcher Farmstead

Red Hook, New York

Wood Analysis

Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


INTRODUCTION

Substrate samples were collected along with paint samples from the Pitcher Farmhouse

on 5 February 2015 and from the east sill of the ell on 23 April 2015.

Thin samples of wood substrate were dry-mounted on slides for radial and tangential

viewing. Samples were observed through a CE Premier Student Microscope and

photographed with an iPhone 5S, using a Carson universal smartphone optics adapter.

There are five types of wood in the Pitcher Farmhouse: poplar, white pine, red pine,

white oak, and chestnut.


POPLAR

The anchor beams are hewn POPLAR (samples 103/2 and 105/2). Poplar is a soft

hardwood, which varies in color from pale yellow to greenish brown. The color darkens

over time when exposed to light. Poplar is distinguishable under magnification by its

diffuse-porous distribution of small pores, clear growth rings, and opposite inter-vessel

pitting.

Poplar (tangential view 10x) intervessel pitting

Poplar (cross section 10x) diffuse-porous

distribution with line of marginal parenchyma


WHITE PINE

All of the sampled doors and trim, with the exception of sample 105/3, are made of

WHITE PINE. White pine has a fine texture and resin canals that are fairly numerous.

The transition between latewood and earlywood is gradual. Cross-field pitting is

window-like and rays are uniserate.

White Pine (tangential view 10x) elongated

tracheids with bordered pits

White PIne (radial view 10x) horizontal

heterocellular rays and resin canals


RED PINE

The anchor bent post sample (Stair 1) is RED PINE, as is the east wall baseboard in the

east parlor (sample 105/3). Perhaps that baseboard is a re-sawn piece of bent IV,

which was removed to create the center hall. Compared to White Pine, Red Pine has a

moderately uneven grain, fewer and smaller resin canals, and a more marked transition

between earlywood and latewood.

Red PIne (radial view 4x) distinct transition

Red Pine (cross section 4x) small resin canals


WHITE OAK

Of the beams that connect the main house to the ell, in the ceiling of 106, the eastern

four are poplar 4”x8” finished on all sides, with a thumbnail profile on the bottom

edges. The remainder of the connecting beams are hewn WHITE OAK. The sample is

ring-porous and has large resin canals with bubble-like tyloses. Rays are conspicuous.

White Oak in situ White Oak (cross section 4x)


CHESTNUT

The only sill sample collected was from the east sill of the ell. The sample is

CHESTNUT. Chestnut, like oak, is ring-porous with visible tyloses, but the pores are

more oval-shaped and arranged in a flame-like pattern. Chestnut also lacks the wide

multiserate rays that are present in oak.

Chestnut sample from east sill of ell Chestnut (cross-section 4x)


Pitcher Farmstead

Red Hook, New York

Paint and Finish Analysis

Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


PAINT FINISHES AND ANALYSIS

Introduction 1

Methodology 2

Floor Plans 3

Sample Sites 5

Findings and Analysis 9

Observations 10

Samples 15

Chromochronology 61


INTRODUCTION

The chromochronology and analysis of finishes on the interior of the Pitcher Farmhouse

on Pitcher Lane in Red Hook, New York was undertaken as part of a historic structure

report in fulfillment of the capstone project requirement for the University of

Massachusetts Master of Science in Historic Preservation program.

The Pitcher Farmstead (circa 1750) in Red Hook, New York is a 1-1/2 story, fivefenestration

bay, Dutch-framed wooden structure with a gable roof that runs parallel to

the main facade, a small one-story addition off the west gable end, and a 1-1/2 story

ell that extends from the north side at the east end. The house sits on a foundation of

dry-laid bluestone. Asbestos siding is compromised in places, revealing asphalt shingle

siding and, beneath that, flat, painted weather-board sheathing visible beneath. The

roof is standing seam metal. There is one chimney at the peak on the east gable end.

At the peak, on the west gable end, there is a patch where a chimney was removed.

The house has much in common with the Dutch/German hybrid of mid to late 18th

century vernacular architecture in this area of the Hudson Valley, but evidence of the

remains of two jambless fireplaces, and a steeper roof pitch; along with the Dutch

provenance of the property; points to the possibility that the Pitcher house may be

one of the oldest-wood framed structures in the town of Red Hook.

Due to the age of the structure and the fact that it was never anything more grand

than a farmhouse, no documentation has been found referencing the original

construction or finishes.

1


METHODOLOGY

Samples were collected from 23 locations inside the Pitcher Farmhouse on 5 February

2015. These locations were selected in order to compare the chromochronology

between rooms and to test theories of evolution within the structure. Samples were

collected from the surface to the substrate using a utility knife and chisel. Substrate

materials are lime plaster for most of the walls and wood for trim, anchor posts, and

beams.

Samples of finishes were mounted in wax and viewed through a CE Premier Student

Microscope and photographed with an iPhone 5S, using a Carson universal smartphone

optics adapter.

Data was collected visually regarding number of layers, colors, and finishes; and then

analyzed for identification of substrate material and documentation of layer

stratigraphy. In a few cases, attempts were made at identifying binders and matching

colors within the sample to commercial paint samples and/or Munsell chips. However,

the goal of this study was comparative analysis among samples rather than in-depth

chemical identification.

For samples where chemical testing was performed, reactions were observed upon the

application of swabs from a rhodizonate lead test kit, water, vinegar, ammonia,

denatured alcohol, mineral spirits, laquer thinner, and xylene.

2


MAIN FLOOR SAMPLE SITES

3


UPPER LEVEL SAMPLE SITES


4


WILLIAM PITCHER HOUSE: PAINT SAMPLE SITES


5


6


7


8


FINDINGS AND ANALYSIS

Finishes on the woodwork on the main floor of the Pitcher Farmhouse range from 1-16

layers thick. Room 107, the north room of the ell, has the most layers of finish. The

door to the cellar (B2) from 104 has the least. The top layers are predominantly oilbased

and contain lead. Earlier layers are that are translucent are glazes, oil-based

paint with varnish added, or pigmented varnishes or shellacs. The walls on the main

floor, with the exception of rooms 101 and 104, are plaster with several layers of

wallpaper. In some cases, the wallpaper has been painted over and more paper applied

on top.

Upstairs, there are fewer layers of finish on the woodwork, which includes not only

doors, baseboard, and trim, but also some plank walls and ceilings, between one and

seven layers. The top coats are opaque, oil-based, and contain lead; earlier layers are

glazes, varnishes, or shellacs. There is less color variation than on the main floor, with

the exception of the upstairs hall area 203, which has both light blue and turquoise as

top coats. Also, sample 205/1, collected from the window jamb in the east room

(205), has a bright green grainy bottom layer. Room 201 is planked and paneled; the

walls and ceiling are coated with a combination of oil and latex paints. Underneath the

planking on the knee-walls, the anchor posts and infill are covered with thick layers of a

lime-based coating. This treatment is also visible on portions of the south wall of 202

and 206. Room 202 is planked on the ceiling and dormer cheeks; the walls, other than

the knee-wall, are covered with a combination of drywall and particle board. The walls

and ceiling of 204 are covered with drywall, which is coated with latex paint. Room

105 has an unpainted plank ceiling. The exposed infill of the knee-wall is coated with a

thick, lime-based coating. The door to room 105 and portions of the south wall of 206

and the outside vertical slabs of 207 are all coated with thick, lime-based coating. The

ceiling of 207 is planked and painted over, then covered with cardboard and wallpaper.

The walls of 207 are wallpapered as well.

The disparity of finishes in quality, variation, and quantity between the main floor and

upstairs in the Pitcher house suggests that the upstairs was much plainer and more

utilitarian for quite some time after the main floor was improved. The garret, room

106, seems to have never been more than a work and storage area. Based on the

evolution of Room 107 in the form of rough plank partition walls, and then lath and

9


plaster, planking, paint and wallpaper, it was clearly living space, possibly for slaves or

later for laborers and servants. The range of finishes on the main floor suggests that

the Pitchers of the 18th and 19th centuries were well-off enough to be followers of

fashion.

OBSERVATIONS

• Sample 105/1, collected from the doorway between the east parlor and the front

entry hall, and sample 102/1, collected from the doorway between the west parlor

and the entry hall, have the same distinctive blue base layer as Sample 203/3 from

the doorway in the upstairs hall leading to the garret (figure 1). This supports the

theory that reconfiguration of the house to create the center hall, and the

attachment of the main house to the free-standing structure to the north, took place

as part of the same campaign.

figure 1

203/3 garret doorway

105/1 east parlor door trim

10


• Sample 105/3, collected from the baseboard on the east gable end of the east

parlor, has only the top layer of white paint in common with sample 105/1, which

was taken from the doorway between the east parlor and the front entry hall.

Sample 105/1, with a substrate of white pine, has a base layer of blue, which

appears to be rough and grainy under magnification; a layer of milky, grainy white;

and a top coat of lead-based white paint. The substrate of sample 105/3 is red

pine, with a grainy, dark brown base layer that is soluble with denatured alcohol.

(figure 2) Other than the top layer of white, these samples of woodwork from the

east parlor have nothing in common. (figure 3) Sample 105/3 has ten layers of

finish, while 105/1 has only four. This suggests that 105/3 was wood reused from

another location. At this point, red pine has only been found in the post at the

bottom of the current stairs, the post that has the paint ghost from the jambless

fireplace hood. Further exploration will be needed to determine where else in the

Pitcher house this material and stratigraphy of finishes exists.

figure 2

105/1 blue base layer 105/3 dark brown base layer

11


figure 3

105/1 stratigraphy

105/3 stratigraphy

• Samples 107/1, 107/2, and 107/3, collected from window trim, the stair door, and

the baseboard, in the north room of the ell, share a top layer of lead-based mint

green paint. The window trim, sample 107/1, has 17 layers of finish. The earliest

appears to be a vivid red. The door to the enclosed stair (no longer extant) has 15

layers of finish. The chromochronology of these two samples is nearly the same

except for a layer of pink just below the top coat of 107/2 and two translucent gray/

brown layers atop the red base layer in sample 107/1. Sample 107/3, from the

baseboard on the north wall, has only 13 layers of finish. The stratigraphy is the

same for two or three layers in succession, and then one or two are missing. The

base layer of this sample is the fourth layer of 107/1 and the second layer of 107/2.

The enclosed stair and the jambless fireplace could not have existed at the same

time. That would suggest that the window was the first addition to room 107,

before the enclosed stair was constructed. The baseboard on the north wall was

installed after the enclosed stair. The presence of the supported stove chimney on

the north wall makes it reasonable to speculate that a counter or other work surface

next to the stove prevented the baseboard from routinely getting painted (figure 4).

12


figure 4

107/1 window 107/2 door 107/3 baseboard

• The sample taken from Stair 1(figure 5), from the post that was the north end of the

central jambless fireplace has only one layer of finish. The black coating is crusty,

grainy, and appears fragile under magnification. It is quite durable, however. Lath

marks and plaster burns hint at how it has been protected since the later 18th -

century renovation.

figure 5

13


• Sample 101/1, collected from the window apron on the south side of the one-story

west addition, has as its second layer of finish a bright blue, followed by a mint green.

Samples 103/1 and 103/2 show the same color combination as their TOP layers

(figure 6). This suggests that the west addition was constructed at the same time

that the second to last layers of finish were being applied to the entry hall.

figure 6

101/1 window apron (above)

103/2 anchor beam (right)

14


• Sample 202/2, collected from the west cheek of the dormer in 202 has a top layer of

white, oil-based paint atop a layer of the bright blue that appears as the penultimate

layer of sample 103/2, collected from anchor beam V at the west wall of the entry

hall, and as the second layer of sample 101/1(figure 7). This location is the only place

where this blue is evident upstairs.

figure 7

202/2 dormer cheek 103/2 anchor beam

15


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 101/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Date Sampled 2/5/15

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane

1st floor, west end room,

window apron


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY 101/1

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white (warm) rhodizonate and

LT/Alc.

opaque

1 white opaque

2 yellow (light) opaque

3 lime green opaque

4 white opaque

5 off-white (double

thick)

opaque

6 red/maroon opaque

7 white opaque

8 white opaque

9 teal (hospital

scrub)

10 blue (bright

blue)

opaque

opaque

11 tan grainy

substrate

white pine

101/1 substrate 10x 101/1 finish 4x 101/1 4x+camera zoom


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 102/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane

1st floor, west

parlor, hall door leg

(left)

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white rhodizonate and

LT/Alc.

opaque

2 pink (pepto) opaque

3 white (2x thick) opaque

4 red (maroon) opaque

5 white (2x thick) opaque

6 cream (4x thick) opaque

7 beige (sandy) opaque

8 gray (light) opaque

9 white opaque

10 white (cream) translucent

11 gray (light) translucent

12 robins’ egg grainy

substrate

white pine

4x substrate + bottom strata 4x top strata

10x substrate


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 103/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, NY

1st floor hall, west

wall, L of doorway

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP

mint green

(light)

2 blue (bright/

dark)

opaque

opaque

3 white grainy

4 brown (med) paper?

5 size?

substrate

plaster w/ red

hair

10x substrate

4x plus camera zoom


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 103/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

1st floor hallway,

west wall,

anchorbeam

Date Sampled 2/5/15

Date

Researched

2/25/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP mint green opaque

2 blue (bright/

dark)

opaque

3 tan fibers paper?

4 gray/white grainy

5 off-white grainy

6 blue (light) grainy

7 black dirt

8 gray primer? size?

substrate

poplar

4x plus camera zoom

4x plus camera zoom


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 104/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

basement door

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white opaque

substrate

white pine

10x substrate

4x plus camera magnification


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 105/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

1st floor, east

room, west door

architrave, right leg

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white rhodizonate and

LT/Alc.

opaque

2 off-white milky

3 dirt

4 blue (light) grainy

substrate

white pine

4x plus camera magnification

4x plus camera magnification, surface


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 105/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane, Red

Hook, New York

1st floor, east room,

anchor beam, right of

hall door

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP

paper white/mint

green

2 gray/white

(grainy)

substrate

poplar

sparse grainy

adhesive, with

fibers

10x size

4x


FINISHES

ANALYSIS

Sample 105/3

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

1st floor, east room,

east wall baseboard,

left of fireplace

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white rhodizonate

and LT/Alc.

opaque

2 gray (medium) opaque

3 gray (light) translucent

4 gray (medium) translucent

5 white (bright) opaque

6 maroon? dirt? opaque

7 off-white milky

8 off-white milky

9 off-white

(darker)

translucent

10 brown (dark) grainy

substrate

red pine

10x

4x surface


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 106/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane, Red

Hook, New York

1st floor, north ell ,

south room, built in

cabinet

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white rhodizonate and LT/

Alc.

2 white (cream) no match 2025-70 gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

3 white (butter) gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

4 white gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

5 white gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

6 white (pink) gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

7 white gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

8 white (butter) gets flaky/powdery

with ALC

9 blue/green 5BG 6/2 2050-40/HC-136 no reaction with any

of the above

substrate

white pine

opaque

opaque

translucent

translucent

opaque

translucent

translucent

translucent

blue black flecks

and crystals

4x plus camera

10x first

4x with commercial

Observations: While the top two layers are clearly modern (20th century) paints containing lead,

the rest of the finishes except the first (blue) layer had little to no reaction with ammonia, mineral

spirits, or denatured alcohol. I think that this, along with the translucent appearance of the middle

layers, means that those finishes are likely linseed oil based. The bottom layer, which is a matte,

grainy, robin’s egg blue, has blue-black flecks. It also appears to have clear or white crystals in it. It

does not react with any of the above listed solvents, or with water or vinegar.


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 106/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

1st floor, north ell,

south room, west

door trim, L leg

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white opaque

2 white (minty

green)

3 white (lighter

minty)

translucent

translucent

4 white (cream) translucent

5 white (butter) translucent

6 white (milky) translucent

7 dirt

8 white (milky) translucent

substrate

white pine

10x


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 107/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Date

Sampled

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

1st floor, north ell,

north room, west

window casing, R

side

2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP green (mint) opaque

2 white opaque

3 gray (dark) opaque

4 blue opaque

5 yellow (butter) opaque

6 white opaque

7 dirt

8 mustard translucent

9 white (milky) translucent

11 gray (light) translucent

12 gray (medium) translucent

13 gray (dark) translucent

14 white opaque

15 white (pink) opaque

16 gray/brown translucent

17 gray (medium) translucent

18 red grainy

substrate

white pine

10x

4x straight on

commercial color


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 107/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Date

Sampled

Pitcher

Farmhouse

159 Pitcher

Lane, Red

Hook, New

York

1st floor, north

ell, north wall,

left door

2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S, MS= mineral spirits

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP green (mint) rhodizonate and

LT/Alc.

opaque

2 pink opaque

3 white Am. milky

4 gray (dark) LT translucent

5 blue opaque

6 yellow (butter) translucent

7 white translucent

8 dirt

9 mustard CRAZY THICK

10 white (milky) translucent

11 thin OPAQUE

12 gray (light) THICK/

translucent

13 gray (medium) translucent

14 gray (dark) translucent

15 white milky

16 red/brown Alc. grainy

substrate

white pine

10x in situ base layer in situ


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 107/3

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

1st floor, north ell,

north wall,

baseboard

Date Sampled 2/5/15

107/3


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP green (mint) 2029-50/

2029-40

rhodizonate and

LT/Alc.

opaque

2 gray (medium) opaque

3 gray (little

darker)

opaque

4 blue opaque

5 dirt opaque

6 yellow (light) opaque

7 white opaque

8 yellow (cheddar) translucent

9 yellow (lighter

cheddar)

10 white milky

translucent

11 beige translucent

12 gray (medium) translucent

13 gray (dark) translucent

14 gray (light) translucent

15 white/gray translucent

substrate

white pine

10x

4x commercial color


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample Stair 1

Building

Address

Sample Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

1st floor, stairway,

post with ghost

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP black full coverage.

looks burnt.

substrate

red pine

10x surface

4x surface


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 202/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

2nd floor, south room,

north doorway, R leg

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white opaque

2 dirt opaque

3 white opaque

4 white opaque

5 gray (light) translucent

6 dirt translucent

7 gray (medium) translucent

8 white (off-white) translucent

substrate

white pine

10x plus camera zoom

4x base layer surface

4x base layer to substrate


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 202/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

2nd floor, south

room, dormer cheek

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white rhodizonate and

LT/Alc.

opaque

2 blue opaque

3 white (off-white) opaque

4 gray (light) opaque

5 dirt

6 gray (medium) translucent

7 white chalky

8 gray/milky translucent

substrate white pine translucent

10x plus camera zoom

4x straight on


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 203/1

Building

Address

Sample Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

1st floor, anchor

beam, above post

with ghost

Date Sampled 2/5/15

Date Researched 3/1/15

Researcher

EMM

Notes

CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Observed through CE Premier Student Microscope, Photographed with an iPhone 5S, using a Carson universal smartphone optics adapter

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP

2

3 SEE WALL

PAPER

ANALYSIS

4

5

6

7

substrate

poplar


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 203/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

2nd floor hall, north

side, cut off anchor

beam end

Date Sampled 2/5/15


101/1 102/1 103/1 103/2 104/1 105/1 105/2 105/3 106/1 106/2 107/1 107/2 107/3 Stair 1

SURFACE white white white white white

(panelling)

white white white

white white pine paper white RED PINE

white 2x white paper poplar white white

paper white white pine white

white plaster white white white white white

white 2x white white

4x white white pine white

white

white poplar white

white

white pine

RED PINE

white

paper

white pine white white

white pine

white pine

white pine

white

white pine

PITCHER FARMHOUSE

FINISH AND WOOD COMPARISON- MAIN FLOOR


202/1 202/2 203/2 203/3 204/1 205/1 206/1 206/2

SURFACE white white white white white white white

white white white white white pine

white white pine white white pine

poplar white white

white pine

white

white pine white white pine

white pine

PITCHER FARMHOUSE

FINISH AND WOOD COMPARISON- UPSTAIRS


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP

blue

(tourquoise)

opaque

2 white opaque

3 white (off-white) grainy

substrate

poplar

4x plus camera zoom

surface view- camera zoom


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 203/3

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

2nd floor hallway,

garret door

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white opaque

2 peach translucent

3 dirt translucent

4 grey (light) translucent

5 white opaque

6 yellow (light) opaque

7 blue grainy

substrate

white pine

10x


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 204/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

2nd floor, right gable

end window trim

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white grainy

2 dark green grainy

substrate

wood

4x

4x with camera zoom

40x

10x with camera zoom


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 205/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher

Farmhouse

159 Pitcher

Lane, Red

Hook, New York

2nd floor, garret

closet door

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white (milky) VINEGAR slight sheen,

thinner

2 white chalky

3 white chalky

4 white chalky

substrate

white pine

4x plus camera zoom

4x substrate


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 206/1

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New

York

2nd floor, garret,

south end, right of

break

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white VINEGAR matte, chalky

2 white matte, chalky

substrate

pine (red?)

4x plus camera zoom

4x plus camera zoom straight on


FINISHES ANALYSIS

Sample 206/2

Building

Address

Sample

Location

Pitcher Farmhouse

159 Pitcher Lane,

Red Hook, New York

2nd floor, garret,

north end, outside of

plank wall, by

chimney

Date Sampled 2/5/15


CHROMOCHRONOLOGY

Reactions: Vin= vinegar, Alc= denatured alcohol, Am= ammonia, H20= water, SPS= solvent paint striper, Pb= lead/Na2S

Layer Types: D= dirt, F= finish, G= glaze, L= latex, O= Oil-based, P= primer, S= shellac, V= varnish

LAYER COLOR MUNSELL # COMM.COLOR REACTIONS NOTES

TOP white VINEGAR chalky

substrate pine

4x substrate

10x


APPENDIX VIII

Pitcher Farmstead

Red Hook, New York

Wallpaper

Emily M. Majer

University of Massachusetts

2015


INTRODUCTION / METHODOLOGY

Samples of wall coverings were collected from rooms 102, 103, and 105 of the William

Pitcher house on 23 March 2015. On 26 April 2015, the samples were analyzed for

clues that could assist in attaching dates to the stratigraphy.

FINDINGS

•ROOM 102, east wall

LAYER MATERIAL REACTIONS NOTES

surface off-white latex paint peels easily

2 pulp wallpaper vinegar soluable

3 mint green paint lacquer thinner soluable same as 103 surface

4 wood pulp paper

substrate plaster possibly a later patch

figure 1- Room 102 sample site

figure 2- Room 102 close up of top layers


•ROOM 103, west wall, anchor beam

LAYER MATERIAL REACTIONS NOTES

surface (fig.3) mint green oil paint (flat) lacquer thinner soluable same as 102

1 pulp paper vinegar to remove dk brown fiber

2 (fig. 4) dark blue oil-based paint lacquer thinner soluable (same as 105 walls)

3 pulp paper vinegar to remove dk brown fiber

4 pulp paper- blue on blue design vinegar to remove dk brown fiber

5 (fig. 5) pulp paper- blurry gray design vinegar to remove dk brown fiber

6 (fig. 6) finer paper-off white/lt.blue design vinegar to remove off-white fiber

7(fig. 7) newspaper? printed paper off-white fiber

8 (fig. 8) paper, light blue with blue bees rag paper

9 (fig. 9) paper, with white and black rag paper

substrate

poplar


fig. 3- Room 103 surface mint green paint

fig. 4- blue oil-based paint

fig. 5- Room 103 blurry gray design on pulp

fig. 6- Room 103 finer, lighter paper

10x zoom


fig. 7- Room 103, zoom on layer 7

fig. 8- layer 8 (blue with blue bees), layer 9 (triangles)

fig. 9- Room 103 layer 9 zoom


• ROOM 105, west wall, anchor beam

LAYER MATERIAL REACTION NOTES

surface (fig. 10) wallpaper- pink floral vinegar to remove dk. brown fiber

2 wallpaper- pink floral * vinegar to remove dk. brown fiber

3 (fig. 11) wallpaper- green/brown vinegar to remove dk. brown fiber

4 (fig. 12) wallpaper- white+pink design vinegar to remove dk. brown fiber

5 wallpaper- indistinguishable dk. brown fiber

wallpaper- indistinguishable

dk. brown fiber

7 paper- gray w/ white rag paper

8 (fig. 13) paper-green w/ white rag paper

substrate

poplar


fig. 10- Room 105 surface layer

fig. 11- Room 105 penultimate layer


fig. 11 detail


fig. 12- Room 105 zoom on red area,

fifth layer from substrate

fig. 13- Room 105 zoom on first layer rag

paper


ANALYSIS

The first major campaign of renovation in the Pitcher house took place in the last

quarter of the 18 th century, after William Pitcher had received title to the property

from his father in 1768. The reconfiguration from a traditional Dutch two-room,

center-chimney dwelling to a more modern center-hall house reflected William Pitcher’s

status as a relatively well-to-do farmer. The center hall allowed the master of the

house to decide how much access a visitor would have to the private spaces within.

The center hall was also the first place that a visitor would be impressed by the

Pitchers’ keeping up with the latest fashions.

By the 1760s there were wallpaper manufacturers in New York and Philadelphia who

were able to compete with European imports and bring the cost within reach of the

middle class. Wallpapers were handmade from a slurry of reconstituted rags and other

fibers until at least 1835. Paper made by hand is identifiable by fibers arranged

randomly rather than in a linear fashion. Viewed microscopically, the first two strata of

coverings from the anchor beams of 103 and 105 are handmade.

In 1775 Swedish chemist Carl Wilhelm Scheele invented a green pigment made from

copper arsenate, which was used in wallpapers and paints. Scheele’s Green, a precursor

to Paris Green, is anecdotally blamed for the death of Napoleon. The first layer of

wallpaper from the Room 105, on anchor beam III, is likely colored with Scheele’s Green

(fig. 15).

The earliest layer of paper from anchor beam IV in the entry hall (103) is a simple

geometric pattern, printed in black and white on rag paper. The pattern, with very

sharp lines (fig. 9), is either block printed or stenciled. The second oldest layer from

the Room 103 wallpaper sample is a white rag paper with a light blue background and

pattern of slightly brighter shapes that evoke a bee (fig.8).

In the 1850s, wood pulp began to be added to paper making, which had already

become mechanized. These papers are identifiable by their slightly darker backing and

oriented fibers. The product devolved with the addition of other pulped fillers, such as

straw. Wallpapers produced after 1880 are identifiable by their dark brown backing

and brittleness caused by acids in the wood.


The surface layer of Room 103 tests to be the same as the first layer of Room 102.

This points to the sample not having been taken all the way to the plaster substrate. It

also shows that Room 102 had two later campaigns of surfacing than did Room 103.

fig. 14- Room 105, sample of poplar substrate with first and second layers of

covering


RESOURCES

Books, Articles, and Publications

• Blackburn, Roderic H. Dutch Colonial Homes in America. New York, NY: Rizzoli

International Publications, 2002.

• Buck, Clifford. Dutchess County, New York: Tax Lists 1718-1787. Rhinebeck, NY: Kinship,

1991.

• Carr, Claire O’Neill. A Brief History of Red Hook. New York, NY: Wise Family Trust in

Cooperation with the Egbert Benson Historical Society of Red Hook, 2001.

• Ellis, Capt. Franklin. History of Columbia County, New York. Philadelphia: Everts & Ensign,

1878.

• Hasbrouck, Frank. The History of Dutchess County, New York. Poughkeepsie, NY: S.A.

Matthiew, 1909.

• Jones, Henry Z. The Palatine Families of New York 1710. Marco Island, FL: Picton Press,

2001.

• Kelly, Nancy V. “Rhinebeck: Transition in 1799.” The Hudson Valley Regional Review, March

1989, Volume 6, Number 2.

• Leonard, Roger M. Upper Red Hook: An American Crossroad. Privately published, 2012.

• Leonard, Roger M. The Red Church. Privately published, 1990.

• Lyon, J.B. Military Minutes of the Council of Appointment of the State of New York 1783-1821,

Vol. I. New York: State Printer, 1901

• McDermott, William P. Dutchess County’s Plain Folks: Enduring Uncertainty, Inequality, and

Uneven Prosperity, 1725-1875. Clinton Corners, NY: Kerleen, 2004.

• McDermott, William P. “Colonial Land Grants in Dutchess County, New York: A Case Study

in Settlement,” The Hudson Valley Regional Review: September 1986, Volume 3, Number 2.

• MacCracken, Henry Noble. Old Dutchess Forever! New York: Hastings House, 1956.

• Meeske, Harrison. The Hudson Valley Dutch and Their Houses. Fleishchmanns, NY: Purple

Mountain Press, 1998.

• Morse, Howard H. Historic Old Rhinebeck. Tarrytown, NY: Pocantico Printery, 1908.

• O’Callahan, E.B. Documentary History of New York, Vol. III. Albany, NY: Weed, Parsons &

Co. Public Printers, 1850.

• Otterness, Philip. Becoming German: The 1709 Palatine Migration to New York. Ithaca, NY:

Cornell University Press, 2004.

• Reynolds, Helen Wilkinson. Dutch Houses in the Hudson Valley before 1776. New York:

Dover Publications, 1965.

• Seidman, Benedict. “Agriculture in Red Hook,” (Senior Thesis, Bard College: Annandale-on-

Hudson, NY: 1940)

• Smith, Edward M. Documentary History of Rhinebeck: A history of its churches and other

public institutions. Rhinebeck, NY: Privately published, 1881.

• Smith, James H. History of Dutchess County. Syracuse, NY: D. Mason & Co., 1882.


RESOURCES

• Stevens, John R. Dutch Vernacular Architecture in North America, 1640-1830. West Hurley,

NY: Society for the Preservation of Dutch Vernacular Architecture, 2005.

• Zantkuyl, Henk. “The Netherlands Town House: How and Why It Works,” in New World

Dutch Studies: Dutch Arts and Culture in Colonial America 1609-1776, edited by Roderic H.

Blackburn and Nancy A. Kelly, Albany. NY: Albany Institute of History and Art, 1987.

Web Content

• Dutchess County Parcess Access http://geoaccess.co.dutchess.ny.us/

• “Hudson Valley Vernacular Architecture Newsletter,” October 2005; http://www.hvva.org/

hvvanews9-7pt3.htm

• “Hudson Valley Vernacular Architecture Newsletter,” November 2005; http://hvva.net/

hvvanew7-10pt1.htm

• “New England Historical Genealogical Society,” americanancestors.org/early-palatinefamilies-of-new-york/

• “Ulrich Simmendinger Register, 1717,” http://immigrantships.net/

v4/1799v4.simmendinger1710100A_L.html, also at New York Public Library Rare Books

Room

• United States Census Data ancestry.com

Human Resources

• Amy K. Dubin: owner of the William Pitcher farmhouse

• Conrad Fingado: Fingado Restoration, Quitman Resource Center, HVVA

• Ken Migliorelli: current farmer, nephew of prior owner

• Joe Howard: farmer, son of last inhabitants

• Chuck Mead: farmer on what was the north portion of Pieter Pitcher’s original 550-acre farm

• Betsy Baxter Wacker: former resident at Elmendorph Corners

• James Hardin: Elmendorph/Pitcher descendant

• Ray Armater: Historic Hudson Valley

• Michael Devonshire: UMass and beyond

• Bonnie Parsons: UMass

• Steven Bedford: UMass

• Claudine and Chris Klose: Historic Red Hook

• Patsy Vogel: Historic Red Hook

• Paula Schoonmaker: Historic Red Hook

• Maynard Ham: Historic Red Hook

• Nancy V. Kelly: Rhinebeck Town Historian

• Marilyn Hatch: Palatine Farmstead

• Wint Aldrich: Red Hook Town Historian


RESOURCES

• Michael Frazier: Rhinebeck Historical Society

• Don McTernan: Rhinebeck Historical Society, NPS retired

• Alvin Sheffer: Germantown History Department

• Elijah Bender: owner of the Heermance Farm

• Joe Zen: Rural Archaeology

• Chris Templin: technical support

• Jon Nandor: security and research assistance

• Sheri Sceroler: support and patience

• Diane Lewis: Common Sense Consulting

Other

Dutchess County Clerk’s Office, Poughkeepsie, NY

Dutchess County Surrogate Court, Poughkeepsie, NY

Historic Red Hook Archives, Elmendorf Inn, Red Hook, NY

Holland Society of New York

New York State Archives, Albany, NY

Starr Library Archives Room, Rhinebeck, New York

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