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Preservation in Action

  • Maine Charitable Mechanic Association’s Mechanics Hall 519 Congress Street Portland, ME, 04101 United States (map)


Older homes don't come with
instruction manuals. 
Luckily, We're Here to Help. 

You have a chance to get your questions answered by experts at

Preservation in Action

A morning of workshops with local preservation experts
who can help you with updating your older home!

Open to everyone interested in learning best practices
in repairing, renewing older buildings and enhancing traditional designs.


Saturday, May 6, 2017
Located at the Maine Charitable Mechanic Association’s Mechanics Hall
519 Congress Street, Portland, Maine

8:15 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
8:15 a.m. - Coffee and Check-in opens
8:45 a.m. - Welcome and Opening Remarks
9:00-10:00 a.m. - First session
10:15-11:15 a.m. - Second session
11:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m. -Third Session
12:30-2:00 p.m. - Lunch and Herb Adams Talk and Tour

Choose three of six great sessions

Don’t Be Afraid of Your Windows:
Maintenance for Historic Windows

9:00 am – 10:00 am
Administering regular maintenance to your windows can make all the difference in assuring they last another 100 years, work properly and maintain energy efficiency.  All the parts of a window can be repaired or replaced simply and inexpensively. And best of all, anyone can do it with a bit of knowledge and a few basic techniques. Marc will guide the audience through identifying the parts that make up a window and then suggest a simple step-by-step process from disassembly to reassembly.

Marc Bagala, owner of Bagala Window Works in Westbrook, ME. 

Where do I Begin? Planning your Project

10:15 am – 11: 15 am
Join long-time restoration contractor Peter Taggart in this session to learn how to organize and plan your next renovation or restoration project.  Proper planning and organization can help you manage costs, avoid surprises, and assure the long term value of your home is maintained.  Bring your project ideas and information to explore specific questions you might have regarding your next home project.

Peter Taggart, owner/president of Taggart Construction in Freeport.

Who Lived Here? Researching the History of your House

 11:30 am – 12: 30 pm
Ever wonder how old your house is or who lived in it over the years? Then this is the workshop for you.  Join Julie Larry as she shares traditional research methods along with creative ways to uncover the hidden history of your house. 

 Julie Larry, Director of Advocacy for Greater Portland Landmarks  

Realtor Panel:
Investments that Will Pay Off for You and Your Older Home

9:00 am – 10:00 am
Join three prominent historic property real estate brokers for a candid discussion about buying, owning and selling an older home. Sure they have lots of character but older homes also require a lot of time, energy and money. The discussion will include thoughts on what to look for when buying, what renovations make sense and what projects you should undertake before selling your old home.    

Panelists: Ed Gardner, Ocean Gate Realty, Tom Landry, Benchmark Residential and Investment Real Estate, John Hatcher, Keller Williams Realty / The Hatcher Group

Window Expert Panel:
Should I Replace or Restore my Old Windows and Doors?

10:15 am – 11:15 am
This panel of experts will consider how to evaluate older windows, and criteria and options when you just can’t save your original windows.  Using case examples, they will talk about how to decide what to do and ways that replacements can be most compatible with existing historic buildings. 

Panelists: Marc Bagala, owner of Bagala Window Works, Ron Conterio, Marvin Design Gallery, and Mac Collins, historic preservation architect and master planner.  

Design Panel: New Uses for Old Spaces
(Kitchens, Baths, Porches, and other Old House Projects)

11:30 am – 12:30 pm
Join this panel of preservation professionals for a lively conversation about mixing old and new and the joys and challenges of remodeling an older home. What hidden problems might come to light during a project and how to survive one of the most exasperating, expensive and exhilarating aspects of older homeownership.

Panelists: John Burdick, founder of Your Kitchen Imagined, Carol DeTine, founder of Carriage House Studio, Peter Taggart, owner/president of Taggart Construction.

Bonus Session:

Historian Herb Adams will give a lunchtime talk about the story behind the Maine Charitable Mechanic Association followed by an opportunity to explore the historic building.

Workshop Fees

$65 – Landmarks Members
$80 – Non-Members, includes a Landmarks membership and all members’ benefits
$40 – bring a second person

Includes Lunch and there is free parking at Ocean Gate Realty next door for attendees.

About the Building

In 1857 Thomas J. Sparrow, the city’s first noteworthy native architect, designed Mechanics Hall for the Maine Charitable Mechanics Association, an organization devoted to “cultivating the mind, and training up a race of mechanics of sound moral principal and intellectual power...” The Maine Charitable Mechanic Association was founded in 1815 as a craftsman’s guild to teach and promote excellence among Portland’s various mechanical and artistic trades. Carpenters, Glass workers, Sailmakers, Shipbuilders and Riggers, Ironworkers, Stone Cutters, Brick Masons, Jewelers, Watchmakers and Nautical instrument makers, Furniture makers and similar tradesmen all learned their skills and crafts through apprenticeship education sponsored by this Association.  The Arm and Hammer is a symbol of strength and “logo” of the Mechanics.


Preservation Sponsors