Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Week One


Exterior of Barnum House, facing H street

Before work can begin on any piece of historic fabric, ample effort must first be given to the documentation of its history, composition and existing condition. Any damage or deterioration is recorded through the use of photography, sketching, and written documentation. All of this can easily be done with a camera, some quarter inch graph paper, a tape measure and a reliable pencil. Thought is directed towards the pathways of the problems back to their original sources. Future generations are now able to look back and understand why treatments were undertaken.

Interior photographic compilation

The degree of documentation prescribed depends on the significance of the project. Typically in leaded glass, dating and documenting is preformed by taking regard for the building context, inscriptions and signatures, composition and other stylistic elements, framing and surround, reinforcement and leading details, and by looking at the glass itself. Opalescent glass did not appear before the year 1880, when it was patented by John LaFarge. That same year Tiffany also patented two variations on LaFarge's technique.

Close-up of damaged glass, also some opalescent glass

Opalescent glass from Kokomo Opalescent Glass Co., Inc.

For more information on opalescent glass follow these links -


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