The original roof of the schoolhouse was cedar shakes. In the 30’s, this was replaced by green asbestos roofing. Then in 1976, in its machine shop storage years, the green roofing was overlaid with black asbestos and the belfry removed. This knowledge came to us in retrospect at the time of laying the new roof. [It had been touch and go whether the crumbling ’76 roof would leak before we could raise the money for a new one.]
According to Maine Historic Preservation Commission it would have been appropriate for us to use shingles, asbestos or low profile metal. We chose the last for reasons of economy and trouble free duration. We chose the best quality [CMS] roofing, factory crimped, widest wale available [18 inch] in mat antique bronze – laid by local timber framers, Mike Alderson and Sean Hickey.
Two missing corbels were hand carved, as a gift to the schoolhouse, by Ken Smith from Carpenters Boatshop, and these were added under the NW soffit. We also had to remove an enormous honeybee nest within the wall in this area. Two members of the ‘Maine Beekeepers Assoc.’ worked with the carpenter on the staging, vacuuming up the workers (over 100,000 of them) and removing layers and layers of comb, honey, grubs and ultimately the queen, all to be recycled through their organization. This was the largest bee nest they had ever seen, 4X6ft, six to seven layers deep, and extending an unknown distance under the corner board around the back of the building The exterior wall was then rebuilt, all entrances plugged with lead sheeting and the cavity filled with foam. (Although the pheromones will continue to attract bees for a ‘long’ time, the care in reconstruction should discourage them.)
At the time of reroofing, the chimney was flashed, loose brick mortised, and a large maple tree leaning over the building was dropped.