Installing Finish Trim & Doors

Research & Collections

All of the Madison doors and trim elements that were found to have been re-used by the duPonts in 1901 are being re-installed. Where needed these elements are being painstakingly repaired and patched by the restoration carpenters.

However, the duPonts did not re-use all of the trim and doors that they removed from the Mansion and so new trim and doors are being milled and installed. The new trim exactly matches surviving Madison era trim and the new doors are also based on Madison period doors.

Images of the Finish Trim & Door Installation

A mason removes ca. 1901 brick infill from a doorway into the Drawing Room. The first step in restoring the Mansion’s interior trim was to reestablish, and occasionally re-construct, the Madison-era door and window frames that had been altered during the post-Madison renovations.

Architectural historians investigate the original location of a chair rail.

A carpenter carefully repairs a surviving Madison-era baseboard. Fortunately, the duPonts re-used a large amount of Madison-era material during their renovations to Montpelier. These elements were collected, studied to determine their original location, repaired and then re-installed.

A ca. 1765 baseboard that has been re-installed in its original location. This baseboard had been removed ca. 1901 when the partition wall was demolished by the duPonts to make room for a new stair hall. The baseboard was subsequently re-used to help hold laths for supporting duPont-era plaster and removed in 2004 during the interior demolition phase of the restoration.


Building a President's House: The Construction of James Madison's Montpelier

With Conover Hunt, Bryan Clark Green and Ann L. Miller coauthored Building a President's House (2007) published by The Montpelier Foundation. This text discusses the various architectural campaigns to Montpelier during Madison ownership, the changes the duPont family made to the mansion, and the subsequent efforts of The Montpelier Foundation to restore the mansion to that of the Madisons' retirement.