Oronoque Saltbox Historic Home Survey
The parlor was the very first room of the house that I’d surveyed. It had much exposed framing and joinery, all of which had been blackened by smoke and soot from that past kitchen fire (photos P1, P3). Here, it was revealed how the first floor end girts and chimney girts were framed into their respective front and rear posts using through mortise-and-tenon joints, with diminished shoulders (P2, P5, P9).
Irregularly shaped joists, with planed bottom faces, were found here, suggesting that the parlor had once been finished with plaster (P8). However, any remaining plaster traces were no longer readily visible, as they were covered by a layer of soot. Also observed here was a central tying joist, flanked by joists of varying widths with reduced ends, and custom joist pockets scribed to fit the various joist ends (P4, P7, and P11).
Of particular interest was the fireplace, which had been faced with red bricks and flanked by fluted pilasters and other elements of paneling and shelving (P6). The work here was very similar to treatments found in the hall.
Also of interest was the extreme reduction down the length of the rear chimney post (Bent III), which was quite inexplicable, given its function and the load it needed to bear (P10).