Historic Construction that time travels back to the City of Henricus, the second successful English settlement in the New World.
Explore a moment in time where 300 settlers, led by Sir Thomas Dale, departed the unhealthy environment of Jamestown with the hope of establishing a strong English Colony. Learn from your visit how these brave settlers lived under the constant threat of attack by Indians and Spaniards while building their colony. Henricus Historical Park re-creates this historical journey for the visitor transporting you back four hundred years. Historic setting in a time where property ownership by the common man was a unique concept. The innovative idea of property ownership by a common man combined with the development of the first English hospital at this location. The chartering of the first college in the New World, the English home of Pocahontas, the establishment of tobacco as the first cash crop in the New World, all happened here the City of Henricus.
Gepetto Craftsmen were instrumental in construction of the crown jewel of the Henricus historic site’s replica church. From the groud up the chapel is built with historically authentic technique by our craftsmen. The opportunity to hand hew, and fit each joint allowed us to share in the same joy of craftsmanship and strong independent spirit shared by these pioneers ages ago. From the handmade glass windows to the the gothic style arches we were able to slip back in time and work with hand tools again.
Give us a call if your modern home needs an antique replica, solid wood centerpiece, or if you are a park service representative looking for qualified restoration craftsmen.
Historic Construction : Building Methods and Materials
For National Park Service and other projects that require authentic historic woodworking techniques and tools that are period specific:
- Beam Joinery
- Waddle and Daub
- Historic Joinery Techniques
- Materials guided irregularities
The advantages to using traditional joinery in preservation & restoration projects are shown in the full character of a historic building. Matching the traditional joinery techniques in construction, repairs, restorations, and other preservation activities ensures the structural integrity of a historic building by matching the existing joinery with a joinery technique that’s compatible with it’s original construction methods. Traditional joinery honors the wooden materials and makes a stronger, more durable end product. The older design methods account for expanding and contracting materials because they had such a thorough understanding of their craft. Modern joinery – on the other hand – generally prioritizes minimal time, and multiple materials like screws and glues. Pairing modern adhesives with historic joinery can compromise the structure of a historic building. Historic construction that values each trade and period specific methods add’s to that period’s methods being maintained in the trade community as well.
Historically Accurate Hand Built Techniques
Traditional joinery is a time-tested method that is much stronger than modern joinery and lasts for generations, even thousands of years. The mortise and tenon joint is the most ancient traditional joint and has been found in the wooden planks of a vessel 43.6 meters long that dates to 2,500 BCE. Traditional Chinese architecture as old as 5000 years used these methods for a perfect fit without using fasteners and glues. The gepetto craftsmen keep these skills and traditions alive in the modern and historic project they complete.