Historic Mt. Rainier

This house is located within the Mount Rainier Historic District, an early twentieth century streetcar suburb characterized by a gentle rolling landscape, a rectilinear street grid extension of Washington DC with mostly modest, detached single family dwellings.

The house is identical in design and detail to Modern Home No. 109 in the Sears Roebuck & Company Book of Modern Homes from 1908 to 1919. Built in 1919 as a 2-story I frame folk vernacular of wood frame with structural cast-in place concrete foundation, the interior spaces were left unaltered, with the exception of bathrooms and a sunroom addition at the rear.

On the exterior, replacement materials were masking the historic character of the house. Sustained water infiltration from the roof was affecting the structure and interior spaces. Additionally, inadequate flashing with T1-11 plywood siding and window replacements were affecting moisture and thermal control in the walls.

The clients’ goals and our objective was to restore the historic character of the house while adhering closely to the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation. The plywood siding was removed to reveal the original German clapboard siding requiring some repair, infill and new corner trim boards. New aluminum clad exterior – wood interior windows were installed to match the original windows with the new front and rear doors reflecting the historic character of the time.

The non-historic front porch steel deck is being replaced with new cedar and ipe posts, steps and rail to reflect the original character of the house. Additional restored details include brackets, rake boards, weathered wood shingle roof on the main house and tern coated steel standing seam metal roof on the 1-story sunroof addition.
Historic color studies for the exterior were also a critical part of the conversation.

Project Data
Datec. 1912, 2019 rehabilitation
LocationMount Rainier, MD
Size1315 ft2
Historic Color Study
Sears & Roebuck Company - Modern House No. 109