Pennsylvania Limestone Farmhouse Renovations to an 1863 farmhouse built of limestone

July 22, 2013

The Plan

Filed under: Stone house restoration,Upstairs — Duane Diefenbach @ 9:20 pm

What I have not done very well on this blog is show where we are headed with the project.  Mostly because that takes time developing drawings, etc. that I don’t have – so instead I have focused on what has been accomplished. But the remodel upstairs has been different for a couple of reasons. First, it is difficult to take photos that give a good sense of the size and relationships of different rooms. Second, we are undoing changes implemented in the 1950s, discovering how the upstairs was originally constructed, and implementing changes that, in some ways, change the character of the 2nd floor of the house even though we have restored the original stairs and doorways.

So hopefully what I provide in this blog will give you a better perspective of the 2nd floor of our house.  To begin, I have drawn how the 2nd floor existed when we bought the house in 1999.  I’m sure a real architect is rolling their eyes at my drawing, but maybe some explanation will help.  First, the staircase from the first floor (middle of plan) took you upstairs where if you turned right you entered bedroom 1, if you went straight you entered the 1950s addition (that we have removed) to access the full bath and bedroom, and if you turned left you entered a hallway area and could access bedroom 2.


After we deconstructed the upstairs we discovered that originally there were 3 bedrooms upstairs. When you walked up the stairs (lower left of drawing) and went straight you entered bedroom 1, if you turned 90° you entered bedroom 2, and if you did an almost 180° turn you entered bedroom 3.  Notice there are no closets and in bedroom 1 a stovepipe entered the middle of the floor from the living room downstairs and exited in the chimney access in the wall.  This also explains why our light switches upstairs were in the middle of the room (not near the doorway) because electricity was installed before the bedroom doors were moved in 1952.


Our plan has restored the original staircase, added a closet in the bedroom, added a closet in the hallway, and added a closet above the stairway.  Because you have to go through a former bedroom to get to the current addition we have decided to make that area a study/office area.  We don’t really need another bedroom and we can always use more storage space!



Hopefully this give you a better perspective of how the stone part of the house has changed over time.  And perhaps what you are looking at when I show photos of our progress.

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