Harry T. Jones Residence

Scope of Work

Full architectural services

Berggren Architects restored and added a kitchen to the historic home.

History

Harry T. Jones, circa 1890

Designed by George A. Berlinghof

Completion

This project was completed in 2010.

The Challenge

Our client, the fifth-generation son and current occupant of the family’s Queen Anne style home, came to Berggren Architects requesting our services to preserve the most historic elements of the structure and create a living space for his bride and future family. This 1890s structure listed in the National Register of Historic Places had several additions. Both the 1950s “modern” kitchen addition and the slightly more fitting 1918 addition responded to the original house design with little sensitivity to the existing context. Our client was anxious to preserve the integrity of the structure and its contribution the community as a neighborhood landmark.

Original house before the 1918 addition.

East elevation shows the 1950’s kitchen addition and the 1918 family room & sleeping porch addition. ca 2007.

Front entry drive at the northwest corner ca. 2007.

Notes:

Harry T. Jones was a prominent banker and co-founder of the local Jones National Bank.

Our clients anticipated rather large gatherings, especially family for holiday celebrations. The existing kitchen, modern when constructed in the 1950s was totally inadequate.

The cooking area and butler’s pantry.

The cooktop and back door entry.

The added den, a prominent feature of the house, while beautiful, resembled a hunting lodge befitting the character of its occupant at that time. As it happens, this is not the character of the new generation. Our clients wanted an open inviting family room rather than the appearance of a turn of the century hunting lodge.

Wall joining family room to kitchen.

The east wall with the fireplace.

The northwest corner with doors to parlor and kitchen.

Our clients wanted to create an exterior homogenous and respectful of the original design.

The heavy-handed addition of the sleeping porches interrupts the traditional Queen Anne style of the original structure photo ca. 2007.

Remarkably, the furniture of each generation had been preserved in storage, and it was the client’s request to refinish where necessary and reuse the most appropriate heirlooms.

Unique family heirlooms, in storage for generations, were to be incorporated into our client’s new-historic home.

The Strategy

Upon review of the structure and its additions, a line of demarcation became obvious.  Approximately the front two-thirds of the house would be restored and the remainder would be redesigned to create a modern living space for this young family.

Notes:

Most of the existing space on the modern side of the line would be gutted or completely removed to create a clean slate for the new design.

Removal of the 1950s addition, circled in red, was an obvious decision in order to reclaim a consistent architectural character.

1950s addition removed during construction.

Virtually all of the non-original elements existing on the historic side would be removed, including a second floor sleeping porch believed to have been added circa 1918.

Removal of the southeast second-floor sleeping porch was also necessary to reclaim the historic beauty of the front and south façades.

Removal of the southeast second-floor sleeping was also necessary to reclaim the historic beauty of the front and south façades.

The sleeping porch conceals some of the intricate details on the historic porch frieze and interrupts the delicate form of the conical roof at the southwest corner of the front porch.

The sleeping porch conceals some of the intricate details on the historic porch frieze and interrupts the delicate form of the conical roof at the southwest corner of the front porch.

The southeast second-floor sleeping porch concealed several traditional Queen Anne embellishments. Before removal of the sleeping porch, the heavy-handed addition obliterated the view of the distinctive south façade bay with character defining “fish scale” wood shingle siding between the first and second floor windows. It also hid the unique barrel shaped roof over the bay.

The southeast second-floor sleeping porch concealed several traditional Queen Anne embellishments. Before removal of the sleeping porch, the heavy-handed addition obliterated the view of the distinctive south façade bay with character defining “fish scale” wood shingle siding between the first and second floor windows. It also hid the unique barrel shaped roof over the bay.

The southeast second-floor sleeping porch concealed several traditional Queen Anne embellishments. Before removal of the sleeping porch, the heavy-handed addition obliterated the view of the distinctive south façade bay with character defining “fish scale” wood shingle siding between the first and second floor windows. It also hid the unique barrel shaped roof over the bay.

The original wine cellar would be protected, and access would be created from the basement under the new addition.

The entrance to the wine cellar from within.

Protecting the wine cellar entrance during construction.

The new foundation wall in front of the wine cellar entrance.

The new master bedroom suite would take advantage of the 1918 southwest second-floor sleeping porch.

Existing sleeping porch, looking southeast.

A more convenient stair would be created for the family’s access to second floor.

Existing stair from second floor to kitchen.

While our redesign of the structure was underway, our most senior interior designer, Mitzi Willis, ASID, worked with members of the fourth generation to inventory the family heirlooms. Virtually all of the heirlooms were cataloged, assessed as to their condition, and assessed for their potential for reuse. Those selected for reuse were cleaned, and if necessary, refinished and/or reupholstered to be ready for installation when the construction was completed.

Accessories were inventoried and catalogued for potential reuse.

Antique game table to find a new home.

Our interior designer, with assistance from our mechanical engineering consultant, arranged for the complete refinishing of original plumbing fixtures and fittings. She was also assisted by our electrical engineering consultant for restoration of the crystal chandelier.

Plumbing fixtures and fittings to be restored and reused.

Plumbing fixtures and fittings to be restored and reused.

All existing light fixtures were inventoried and those to be reused, were restored/rewired and reinstalled to maintain the historic character of our client’s home.

All existing light fixtures were inventoried and those to be reused, were restored/rewired and reinstalled to maintain the historic character of our client’s home.

All of the utilities would be replaced and brought up to current code requirements.

The Results

Now, more than a decade and three new members of the sixth generation later, our clients are thoroughly enjoying the investment they made in their family’s historic home. Skilled craftsmen restored those areas of historic significance and replicated design elements for inclusion in the modern area of the family’s living space. As planned, the family heirlooms have now returned to prominence and provide useful and comfortable appointments throughout the historic rooms of the home.

The restored front façade.

The restored dining room is outfitted with heirloom
furnishings.

Guests entering the restored front hall are greeted by period correct, family heirlooms.

Guests entering the restored front hall are greeted by period correct, family heirlooms.

New modern kitchen, ideal for entertaining, getting its finishing touches.

New modern kitchen, ideal for entertaining, getting its finishing touches.

Restored master bedroom now services a guest room furnished with heirloom furniture and accessories.

Restored master bedroom now services a guest room furnished with heirloom furniture and accessories.

The unique side entry hall was the perfect size for a guest’s powder room. Peeling back the layers of paint and flooring revealed a beautiful parquet floor. The restored lavatory, found in the basement, created a memorable finishing touch to the room.

Before (Original side entry) 

After

This original window was hidden from view throughout its life. Now it is an integral part of the master bathroom design.

The master bath takes advantage of the east morning light spilling through the historic window.

The master bath takes advantage of the east morning light spilling through the historic window.

Years of paint were stripped away then historic design details were highlighted to bring out the hidden beauty of a century ago.

Highlighted gable at north stair to porch.

Highlighted frieze and gable of the restored Queen Anne porch.

Before.

After.

The sixth generation, and parents, are enjoying their historic home.

Notes:

Convenience was a high priority for personal family functions and for entertaining guests.

The original back stairway was completely redesigned to provide convenient access from the master suite and children’s bedrooms for the early-morning rush to school or the office. Now the stair lands at the heart of the living space adjacent to the kitchen and family room.

Before

The new stair arrives conveniently between the family room and the kitchen.

The new stair arrives conveniently between the family room and the kitchen.

The kitchen was strategically located adjacent to the original butler’s pantry, preserving the original convenience for serving guests on formal occasions and creating convenience for the more frequent informal meals within the family.

The new breakfast nook was especially designed for the adults and their early coffee and toast before heading to work while the children are still nestled in bed.

Breakfast nook seen from the exterior

Breakfast nook seen from the interior.

The footprint of the original home and the new addition creates a subtle screen and privacy for the family’s outdoor living space.

The architecture of the original historic house, its addition with the cantilevered breakfast nook, additional gables and the adjacent garage create interest to the point that an observer does not even realize there is a large family play area totally concealed from view.

The breezeway, from the kitchen to the garage, also creates privacy for the family’s back yard.

A special garage, in much closer proximity to the kitchen, provides easy access when delivering groceries or dropping off children.

Adding a Queen Anne style garage created great convenience whether delivering groceries to the kitchen, or collecting children for a ride to school.

The addition of this breezeway protects the family from rain and hot summer sun.

The addition of this breezeway protects the family from rain and hot summer sun.

Our client continues to be an excellent steward of the family home. When completed, many of the existing elements of the home had several years of service life remaining. During the past decade, our client has continued to seek our help restoring those elements. Most recently, the original wood-shingled roof had reached the end of its service life. We assisted our client with specifications and drawings to ensure the highest quality roofing material was selected and installed by skilled craftsmen.

The stained wood shingles had sustained ten years of weather. It’s time for maintenance of the stain and replacement of the original shingles which had now reached the end of their service lift.

Existing shingles at the time of the restoration and addition project had several years of service life remaining. Now ten years later, the existing shingles to the left have not retained the stain as well as the new shingles on the right. Their more weathered texture is obvious.

Ice is backing up in some of the gutters causing leaks which are damaging the soffit and facia.

The New Challenge

We stay in touch with our clients for several years into the future. Learning how well our projects are serving our clients is sometimes humbling and other times rewarding. For this client, being readily available was appreciated as their historic shingled roof reached the end of its service life. While we had created an attractive and comfortable home, there were several aspects of the original house which were not addressed. This challenge would take on the challenge of replacing the oldest sections of shingles and refurbishing the shingles installed at the time of the addition.

The New Strategy

Since some areas of older shingles were already leaking and causing damage, we used our drone to inspect all surfaces of the roof.

The roof of the 1918 addition required a lengthy drainage system which terminated at a low-pitched location. Slowing the runoff water at near the downspout frequently promoted the creation of ice dams.

The roof of the 1918 addition required a lengthy drainage system which terminated at a low-pitched location. Slowing the runoff water at near the downspout frequently promoted the creation of ice dams.

Using the drone image, we outlined the areas of new shingles.

The metal gutter of the complex drainageway between the original house and the 1918 addition was replaced with a copper gutter soldered at most joints and fit neatly where lapped movement joints were needed to accommodate thermal expansion and contraction.

The New Results

Using the details and base drawings from the restoration project, we worked directly with the roofing company to restore the roof to its original beauty.

More about the
Living Space
Category

Living spaces are more than just places of shelter. They are expressions of their owners—both past and present. When preserving historic homes, the challenge lies in blending the character of today’s generation with the heritage of generations before them.

We have served many of our clients through the course of multiple projects, seeing both home and homeowner evolve through the years. Our team listens to our clients to learn what they value most in their home. Our most successful projects consider all generations: past, present, and future.

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Our Process

We listen to you

We are preservation architects, let’s get together and talk about your project. Once we know your ideas, we can start your project in the right directions.

We involve you in the planning

Planning projects is what we do. We’ll work with you to develop the best way to implement your ideas. Our written documents are the road map which is essential to ensuring your expectations.

We make it happen

When you’re ready to implement your ideas, we’ll gather together the craftsmen and women necessary and bring your ideas to life. Architecture is in the details. We will follow your project through completion ensuring all the details meet your expectations.

What We Offer

Restoration

We offer restoration and preservation of your historic structures. Using extraordinary materials and craftsmanship, our historic structures are a lasting tribute to the people for whom they were built.

Consulting

We offer consulting services to both general clients and professional clients in sharing our knowledge and expertise in the area of historic preservation. Our master planning and preservation planning prepares our clients to be better able to plan for the life of their historic structures and districts.

New Construction

We know the meaning of sustainability because of our in-depth work with structures which have stood the test of time. We offer sustainable and green new construction which is historically sympathetic, including in the form of additions.

Our Team

Principal, Preservation Architect

Jerry L. Berggren, AIA

Production Manager

Garry Martin, Associate AIA

Architect

Farheen Sirajuddin

Architectural Historian

Janet Jeffries

Architectural Student Intern

Jessica Fujan

Architectural Student Intern

Brandy Nguyen

Architectural Student Intern

Alexi Caines

Principal, Preservation Architect

Jerry L. Berggren, AIA

Jerry Berggren founded the firm in 1977 in Lincoln, Nebraska and has since then been dedicated to the preservation of Nebraska’s finest architecture. The 1983 Jobs Bill was the milestone which introduced the firm to its most significant building type, the historic county courthouse. A project to improve the thermal efficiency of the windows at the Johnson County Courthouse in Tecumseh also initiated Berggren’s concern for energy conservation and an ongoing commitment to sustainable design.

In 1986, Jerry’s “Courthouse Trail” proposal to the state was approved. The Courthouse Trail experience solidified two career-long relationships with the Nebraska Energy Office and the Nebraska Association of County Officials. He continued to serve Nebraska’s county clients and in 2002 he became the recipient of the Honors Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This achievement was Berggren’s first nationally recognized award.

Today, Jerry Berggren has expanded his firm and employs professionals with abilities in historic preservation, architecture, interior design, sustainability, master planning and more. The future will undoubtedly hold more unexpected opportunities and challenges. He looks forward to each of those and you are invited to contact him directly regarding the architectural challenges you face.

Production Manager

Garry Martin, Associate AIA

Garry has been working in the architectural field continuously since obtaining a master’s degree in architecture from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1991. He had previously worked with Jerry Berggren as an intern in 1989 and the experience piqued his interest in the field of preservation. Garry leads the production team at Berggren Architects.

Architect

Farheen Sirajuddin

Farheen, a citizen of India, began her career with formal education in that county achieving the status of architect. When her husband was transferred to the US, she seized the opportunity to study at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln graduating in 2019 with her Master of Architecture. She immediately became one of our full time employees continuing to work until her student visa expired in July of 2020. Having to return to India, we thought we had lost a valued employee. Thanks to COVID, we have had to learn to work remotely. From India, Farheen is once again joining us. This time as a contract employee and we are very grateful to have her back

Architectural Historian

Janet Jeffries

Janet has a career history as an educator, writer, and researcher in the field of historical and architectural preservation. She currently works as the College Historian for Doane College in Crete, NE and is the Curator for the Crete Heritage Society. Janet is currently employed as the firm’s Architectural/Preservation Historian.

Architectural Student Intern

Jessica Fujan

Jessica joined Berggren Architects in 2019. Now in her third year of our Larsen Legacy internship program, she is heavily involved assisting with construction document. Including recent projects for Cass, Jefferson and Nemaha Counties. Jess has also become our liaison with the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Medi Arts as be explore greater uses of video and animation.

Architectural Student Intern

Brandy Nguyen

Brandy Nguyen joined Berggren Architects in April of 2020. As an architectural Brandy was recruited in 2020 by Jessica to become the next Larsen Legacy intern. During this year of his internship, he is taking charge of Berggren Architects outward appearance. Website development and polishing the proposal we submit are among his responsibilities. He is also becoming a significant help with the production of construction documents.

Architectural Student Intern

Alexi Caines

Alexi joined Berggren Architects in 2021. In her first year as a Larsen Legacy intern, her responsibilities begin with coordinating office operations and research. Her future responsibilities will include marketing as she advances toward preparation of construction documents and design.

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