The Durable Restoration Company has officially started the highly anticipated four month restoration process of Annaburg Manor, Manassas, Virginia. The City of Manassas purchased the land in 2019 with the plan to restore the historic structure and turn the property into a recreational park.
Annaburg Manor was built in 1892 by entrepreneur Robert Portner. Since being built, Annaburg Manor has gone through innumerable exterior changes, some less durable then others, each reflecting the different styles of the occupants living there through the years. The Durable Restoration Company (DRC) will work to restore the historic building back to its’ original façade. Led by DRC’s historic preservationist, Julie Butler, the work will be done using accepted historic preservation practices and materials.
Our first step in the historic restoration process will be to replace the asphalt shingle roof to historic black Virginia slate. Examples of this slate were discovered in the building’s attic, providing insight into the building’s original roof. Once installed, Annaburg Manor’s new slate roof will have a functional life expectancy of 150 years.
Below the roof, the formerly pink brick and brownstone façade – now a bright and peeling white – will hopefully be fully restored to its original warm hue, but only after rigorous testing. Currently, DRC conservators will use carefully fabricated mock-ups, evaluating different combinations of paint and removal techniques, to determine the closest possible match for the paint used and the least invasive method for removing it. The current paint coatings are leading to deterioration of the stone below and are not historically appropriate.
Completed, Annaburg Manor’s distinctive colors and ornate details will be a crowning achievement for DRC and a beautiful new social center for the city of Manassas, Virginia.