Schoolhouse Restoration News
a few days after the bell tower had been installed and
trucks and crane had left, another trailor arrived in the
house parking lot. It was the first of several that are
employed by the crew that will restore the exterior of
School - April 2, 2002
are multiple steps in the
process required to
- restore the brick
exterior. This will be a summary
- of those used at
the Morton Schoolhouse.
and deteriorated mortar is removed by grinding the
All the mortar joints are ground to a depth of about
to 3/4 inch.
front enclosure is removed
order to facilitate the grinding on the front of
schoolhouse, the enclosure was removed the
after the work had begun.
weather has been a mixture of snow, rain,
bits of sunshine for the benefit of the work crews.
- The grinding of the mortar
joints took the crew about 4 to 5 days
dusty, grimy, work. The rain that occurred was welcomed, since
helped to reduce the amount of dust in the air and helped to
some of the dust that settled on all the surrounding
After an area was finished, pressurized water was
to further remove the dust and grime.
the surface has been washed, the task of removing
bricks begins. Over the years some of the bricks
deteriorated, or have been damaged. If the damage
extensive the brick is removed. In the picture above,
school front has been washed and several bricks in
outer course have been removed.
- Bricks on the West
side as well as the remainder of
- the schoolhouse
have been removed.
- The brick used
in the construction of Morton School, as well
- as many of the
early schools, were a soft brick fired at a relatively
- low temperature.
The bricks that are currently manufactured are
- much harder and
of a different size. In order to properly restore the
- building, the bricks
that replace those that have been removed should be
- as similar in appearance,
age, and all other characteristics as possible.
- Bricks that the
work crews had reclaimed from other area projects,
- proved to be unsuitable
for Morton School for a variety of reasons.
- When faced with
this dilemma, friends in the community again
- came forward to
- Faulkner school, another area one-room school
that was constructed
- at nearly the same
time (1889) as Morton, is currently in bad repair
- and many bricks
are becoming detached from the inner brick courses.
- Current descendants
of the Daniel S. Faulkner family who owned the
- land where their
school was built, agreed to allow the use of some of
- the brick from
their schoolhouse in the restoration of Morton School.
- Lawrence Faulkner,
a grandson of Daniel, and his sister, Mrs Doris
- Faulkner /Stotts,
and her daughter Mary Ann Stotts have been closely
- following the Morton
project. When they heard of "brick problem",
- they all agreed
to help and volunteered to participate in removing
- the Faulkner school
bricks. The Faulkner bricks were taken to
- Morton School so
the crew could begin installing them the
- following day.
- Now the schoolhouse
with some bricks removed and freshly ground
- mortar joints,
was washed with a mild cleaning solution that removed
- most of the surface
grime, stains, paint wash, and bird droppings that
- had accumulated
over the years.
- The Faulkner bricks
were then put in place with a mortar that cures not
- nearly as hard
as the standard mortar commonly used today. Since the
- bricks are a softer
variety, the mortar must be also, so that the relative
- hardnesses are
compatible. Otherwise, today's commonly used mortar after
- a period of time,
would destroy the surface of these brick. Mortar was then
- applied overall
to replace all that was removed in the grinding process.
School West Side - April 9, 2002
cleaned, with some Faulkner School bricks and fresh mortar!
it look great??
another week or so, all the scaffolding and equipment that was
crew from Oak - Stone Renovators, Inc. was gone gone and they
us with a beautifully restored building exterior.
School House - May 2002
next step is the replastering of the interior . . . .
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