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House makeover, Kinsman edition



Published: Wed, January 12, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



The house was deemed a state and national historic landmark in 1971.

WARREN -- Exterior renovations are about to begin at a historic and weathered Mahoning Avenue Northwest mansion.

Bids were opened Tuesday for the work at the Kinsman House, a Greek Revival style structure built in 1832.

The base bids were below the architect's $468,000 estimate: Jack Gibson Construction Co. of Warren bid $442,000 for 90 working days; Jance Construction of Mentor, $412,000 for 75 working days.

The project, planned since 2001, includes both the house and nearby land office, 303 and 321 Mahoning. The architect is Gaede Serne Architects Inc., Cleveland, a specialist in historic renovations.

What's involved

Dale R. Serne, architect, said the exterior renovation involves "everything really except the roof." That metal roof was replaced about five years ago.

This work includes stripping, cleaning and repainting the brick; a common brick was used and it will be repainted, possibly its original maizelike color, Serne said.

Windows, shutters, exterior woodwork and all brick and stone exterior surfaces including chimneys are part of the project.

Alternates above and beyond the base bids that would add to the cost include underground electrical service, lighting and a protection system, repair or replacement of bricks and replacement of columns.

The house's massive columns, however, will be repaired -- not replaced -- because of cost, Serne said.

The city's board of control -- Mayor Michael O'Brien and Auditor David Griffing -- will review the bids and make a recommendation within 10 days.

The Kinsman House project is a part of Warren's Community Development Block Grant program.

History

The house was commissioned by Isaac Ladd on land given by Gen. Simon Perkins to his daughter Olive and her husband, Frederick Kinsman.

According to "An Historic Walk Along Mahoning Avenue," compiled by Grace C. Allison and published by the Fine Arts Council of Trumbull County, the house during the 1930s was used as a branch of Hiram College; in 1940 it became a courthouse annex.

The house was restored during the 1970s with an Ohio grant for historical renovation. It was designated a state and national historic landmark in 1971. Alterations made over the years did not disturb historic aspects of the home.

The land office (Connecticut Land Company Office) is immediately north of the Kinsman House. It is a small building with Doric columns. Perkins sold tracts of the Western Reserve from this building, which was built some time before the house.

It began being used in the 1960s by Trumbull County's Soldier's Relief Commission.




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