Historic Structures Reports

Historic Structures Reports are most commonly used by owners of historic properties as a part of preservation planning for the use or re-use of a property. The report combines documentary research and close physical examination of the building materials to establish the property's history. Graphic materials including plans and photographs document existing conditions. These components are combined in the report to establish the history of the building (ownership, occupancy, uses), changes over time, and existing conditions. From this information treatment methods can be establish for any repair, rehabilitation, or restoration projects and also provide guidelines for maintenance procedures. Preservation Company has prepared many historic structures reports, on a range of buildings, including barns, railroad depots, and institutional buildings such as a music hall and an academy building, and a vertical lift bridge.

Preservation Brief 43: The Preparation and Use of Historic Structure Reports


Memorial BridgeMemorial_Bridge_HSR_BW.jpg

Work involved the creation of a Historic Structures Report for the 1923 Waddell Vertical-Lift Bridge, considered the most significant of New Hampshire’s historic bridges. This was the first HSR prepared for a bridge in New Hampshire and the effort involved multi-disciplinary integration with engineers and archaeologists. The approximately 450-page study includes large-format photographs, historic photographs, historic maps, extensive historic narrative/study of development of the bridge, and an analysis of its engineering significance. A separate study (and NHDHR DOE) of the Portsmouth Approach Bridge and a visual analysis of Memorial Square were also done and included in the HSR.

Link to Memorial Bridge HSR

Old Portsmouth Public Library (Academy Building and Morton-Benedict House)

An abbreviated Historic Structures Report (HSR), the product of multiple interested parties, was prepared under contract with the City of Portsmouth in collaboration with James L. Garvin then NH State Architectural Historian. The report identified character-defining features for the preparation of the preservation easement on the 1809 Portsmouth Academy and the ca. 1811 Morton-Benedict House and provided baseline documentation including black-and-white photographs recording existing conditions. Preservation Company researched and wrote the detailed building histories drawn from a range of documentary sources including deeds, historic maps, city directories, newspapers, and historic photographs. 


Plumer-Jones Farm ( New Hampshire Farm Museum), Milton

An in-depth historic building analysis was prepared for the New HampshireFarmMuseumin 2011-2012.  This massive 19th century farm complex, including early house, tavern, ell, stable and large barn, extends over 275 feet.  The buildings were added over time and moved to create a connected farm arrangement.  The Historic Structures Report covered all sections of the complex, recording, photographing, dating, and describing the condition of every detail from the framing to the door knobs.  Documentation included floor plans drawn in Autocad, historic photographs, and detailed photo location keys.  The report culminated in detailed recommendations for treatment of the historic building materials.   The project was funded by a grant from the Land Conservation Investment Program (LCHIP)

Windham Junction Railroad Station ComplexWindham_Depot_after.jpg

Description of Windham Junction Railroad Station Complex

Download Windham Depot HSR