M O Board
October 24, 1975
Mrs. C. D. Towers, Sr.
3500 Richmond Street
Jacksonville, FL 32205
Dear Mrs. Towers:
I have just come back from looking at the house. The tearing down
to the essential fabric is nearly complete, and the putting back is be-
ginning. I am still intrigued by the small wind vents on either side of
the chimney. It will be possible to leave the one to the north of the
chimney open (and glazed) as an architectural feature. None of us can
recall having seen a similar feature in a St. Augustine house, but then
they may be covered up as these were.
I have been unable to run-down the source of the statement about the
lintels; that they "were the longest lintels in St. Augustine". In fact,
on thinking it over, I don't know how the statement could be made since
so many lintels in town have not been seen because of the plaster. At
any rate, Herschel and Bob have decided that the lintels will all have
to be supported by angle irons in order to insure the structural integrity
of the building. They have turned out to have serious weaknesses. This
correction will, of course, be invisible.
The proposal about an upstairs fireplace involves one essential diffi-
culty. It could not be built without adding a separate flue for it; two
fireplaces are not permitted to operate off a single flue. This would
nearly double the size of the chimney and thus involve a major change in the
plans. I sincerely doubt that the National Park Service would approve this
change since it is clearly a change in the original exterior configuration.
If approved, it could not be paid for from the federal grant.
Herschel has seen the mantel which was removed, and is in storage. He
did not include replacing it in the house in his plans. I will ask him the
next time he is down, but I presume that it is because the mantel is of a
much more recent date than the basic house. Anyway, I will look into it.
Now about your idea for a party. I am attaching an organization chart
which may help you identify the people and groups you are interested in :
having. All employees, from director to part-time help, are considered as
the staff by us, since we have been trying to erase a feeling of division
which had grown up over the years. I gather you were most interested in
Department of State !Division of Cultural Affairs
Bruce A. Smathers Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board-JohnW. Griffi, Director
Secretary of State Post Office Box 1967, St. Augustine, Florida 32084 904/824-3356
State of Florida Florida Historic Preservation Boards: St. Augustine Pensacola Tallahassee Key West
October 24, 1975
those who work with the public or maintain -the area. They are primarily in
the blocks of Interpretation and Buildings & Grounds. I have put red dots
by those staff members who have regular or substantial supervisory responsi-
bilities. These, plus Rita, are the ones who regularly meet in "staff"
meetings. Hope this is of some help.
I'll keep you informed about the house, and always welcome your comments.
Sin er 1 ,