2006 Preservation Awards


Campbell House Museum

St. Louis, MO

AWARD for the meticulous restoration of this important 1851 house to its 1880s period of significance, now reopened to the public with original furnishings, hand-painted decorations and recreated wallpapers and carpets.

Built in St. Louis’ first private neighborhood, the house was purchased in 1854 by Robert Campbell.  Campbell and his wife then went east on a $40,000 buying trip to furnish the house appropriately and doubled the size of the house over the next twenty years with the help of local architect George Barnett. When he died in 1879, Campbell left a $2 million estate from business ventures in gold mines, railroads and cattle.  The family occupied the house until 1938, when a group of local preservationists purchased it and most of its contents. It was opened as a house museum in 1943.

By 1999 it was apparent that a major restoration of the exterior and interior of the house was mandatory. Using paint analysis and extensive archival photographs of the house taken by a son in 1885, the interior carpets, wallpapers and elaborate painted ceiling decorations were replicated as exactly as possible.  Necessary structural repairs were undertaken, and modern climate control, fire suppression and security systems were installed. The house and its collection are once again open to the public and have become teaching resources for scholars and students of history and material culture.


T. J. Ramsdell Building

Manistee, MI

COMMENDATION for the sympathetic renovation of this l891 Romanesque revival bank and office building, the city’s most prominent downtown structure, now adapted as a bed and breakfast inn.

Constructed when Manistee was a prosperous lumbering town, this commercial building was then and remains the most prominent downtown structure in the city.  Thomas Jefferson Ramsdell, a local lawyer and philanthropist, commissioned architect Fred Hollister of Saginaw to design the building in 1891.  After the demise of the timber industry, Manistee became a sleepy backwater, but its historic core remained in tact and is now an historic district.

The Ramsdell Building was purchased and sympathetically renovated in 2004 as a bed and breakfast inn.  The original floor plan was retained, with guest rooms on the upper stories that were once offices.  Interior woodwork was refinished, and appropriate paint colors and furnishings were selected.  All systems were upgraded.  Of particular interest is the original bank vault that has now been converted into a gift shop.

Web site:  www.ramsdellinn.net

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