Look under the floors at Boardman House

Jul 21, 2011

Last year, repairs to the hallway floor at Boardman House prompted an archaeology project that revealed few artifacts, but gave more information about the construction of the floors and sills in the southeast corner of the house. Now that the archaeology has been completed, Historic New England’s preservation carpentry staff have resumed their work to restore the floor.

This project has uncovered “sleepers” laid directly in the dirt. Sleepers are essentially floor joists, or horizontal supporting members, but are located at the foundation level of the timber-framed house. They usually are more substantial than the narrow beams used for joists in the upper stories. These sleepers have been repaired at different times, and while some appear to be part of the original seventeenth-century construction, others are clearly later replacements or repairs from the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

The floor of the hall will still be open and visible during the next Boardman House open day on Saturday, August 6, with tours offered between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Come and examine this exciting architectural evidence and learn about the other rare surviving features in this 1692 house.