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December 2021 – Chapter Meeting

Working with the National Park Service: A Case Study of Early French Settlement Building Practices and Restoration

December 14, 2021 @ 12:00 pm 1:00 pm EST

Free Members/Non-Members


The National Park Service holds buildings in its portfolio that are key to historic building practices. This presentation will introduce attendees to vernacular typologies used by French settlers in the Midwest during the eighteenth centuries. Traditional framing techniques used at the Bauvais-Amoureux house will be discussed and compared with local framing technologies of structures of similar construction date and with the few other known poteaux-en-terre structures.

The city of Ste. Genevieve, Missouri, includes a wealth of French vertical log structures dating from the 1790s to the 1850s and represents the largest surviving collection of such structures in the United States.  In 2018, the National Park Service founded the Ste. Genevieve National Historical Park to celebrate and preserve the French vernacular architecture of the region. 

The Bauvais-Amoureux House was originally constructed in c. 1792 and is one of three known poteaux-en-terre style houses in Ste. Genevieve and one of only five known surviving structures in the United States and presents a unique case study for intact and mostly undisturbed poteaux-en-terre construction. 

Learning Objectives – 1.0 HSW

1. Investigate vernacular architectural practices related to the French Colonial era in the Mississippi Valley including vertical log structures.

2. Compare the differences in framing methods at the Bauvais-Amoureux House and other extant poteaux-en-terre structures.

3. Analyze the changes over time related to modifications and alterations of the Bauvais-Amoureux House.

4. Review specification practices for historic structures

About the Presenter

Lurita McIntosh Blank, NCARB, RBEC, APT RP, is an Associate Principal with Raths, Raths, & Johnson.  She specializes in historic preservation, masonry conservation, façade restoration, roofing and waterproofing, and enclosure consulting. She has provided restoration services for dozens of National Register and National Historic Landmark properties across the nation, balancing material and performance needs for complex building issues.

Lurita is a Registered Architect, a Registered Building Envelope Consultant through IIBEC, and a Recognized Professional through the Association for Preservation Technology.  She is deeply involved with the Association for Preservation Technology, currently serving as Treasurer for the international organization and Vice President for the Western Great Lakes Chapter.

Thank you to our December Meeting Sponsor!

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