Volunteers are casting new light on recent renovations at the historic Briggs House on the Frostville Museum campus in the Rocky River Reservation.
The original flooring of the house, which dates to 1836, has been restored, an original settee also dating to the 1830s, has been reupholstered, a modern lighting system designed to fit within the same historic time period has been installed and the interior of the first floor of the two-story Greek Revival home has been repainted.
“This is the first summer where people will get to see the house with the renovations,” said Anne Schreiber, treasurer for the Olmsted Historical Society and the volunteer who helps oversee work on the historic home. “It’s definitely upgraded the first floor for when visitors come through the home.”
The flooring, settee and lighting work was paid for with $7,000 in state and international grants obtained by the David R. Bain chapter 1491 of the Questers group, which supports renovation projects at historic sites like this, said Jennie Lyons, president of the Ohio Questers group. The painting was paid for by Bob Crider, who has supported the Historical Society for many years.
“We’ve always appreciated the Frostville site and (are) glad to be able to help preserve a historic home,” Lyons said.
The Briggs House was moved from Lorain Road in North Olmsted to the Frostville Museum campus in 1969. Thomas and Abia Briggs, who had six children, were among the first settlers in 1825 in the area that would become North Olmsted. Making sure the Briggs House stays in good condition is important to Schreiber, who has ancestors from the Briggs family dating back six generations.
“Many of us have some type of connection to the home through ancestors and we try to support the home and the society by getting the different work done,” Schreiber said.
Crider is Schreiber’s cousin and even though he lives in Columbus, Indiana, he has maintained his support for Frostville and the Briggs House for many years.
“My parents, Harry and Marian Crider, were very involved in Frostville for many years and I always supported and funded their work from a distance,” Crider said. “My sister and her husband, Jane and David Neville, have also done a lot of work with Frostville and the Society.”
Schreiber said getting the floor restored and the settee refurbished will help people appreciate the home. With the refurbishing, the settee is again solid enough to be used occasionally, Schreiber said.
Society volunteers will continue to look for ways to upgrade the house and overall museum campus, Schreiber said.
“There’s always different projects going on or that can be started around here,” Schreiber said.
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