Unexpected damage delays Mattapoisett carriage house repairs

Jun 18, 2021

MATTAPOISETT — The Mattapoisett Museum is home to a number of historical town items — like the Eagle Hand Pumper, Mattapoisett’s first fire extinguishing apparatus which just celebrated its 200th birthday — but the carriage house storing those storied items is in need of some repair.

During a renovation of the carriage house’s siding which had nails rusting out and loose boards, construction workers found a rotted post, likely caused by insect and water damage.

“Probably some issue with the roof a long time ago,” Museum Director Jeffrey Miller said.

Renovation on the carriage house halted after the rotted post was found, and won’t continue until new wood to match the interior and exterior of the carriage house is cut.

Miller said he’s unsure how much the added repairs will tack on to the $80,000 of the carriage house renovation, during which much of the siding has already been replaced.

“For this exact sort of thing you don’t really know until you get into it what you’re gonna find,” Miller said.

The renovation is funded in part by a $20,000 Mass Cultural Council matching grant, wherein the council matches money raised by the museum for the project.

“We need to match an equal amount or we don’t get the money,” Miller said.

For now, the project is halted — likely for a couple of weeks while new wood is cut — and the added cost to repair the post and boards are unknown.

Both the post and the boards surrounding it will need to be replaced, and even with matching wood, it will likely need to age before the new boards will blend with the interior wall.

“There’s nothing other than time that can really do that,” Miller said.

To donate to the carriage house restoration, go to mattapoisettmuseum.org.