On a third floor wall of the historic Scott House in Hillsboro you can see markings with names and dates of the Scott children where they were measured as they grew in the 1800s. Visitors can view those markings, and climb to the cupola and walk out onto the roof, when the Highland County Historical Society hosts an open house to show off recent renovations to the mansion from 3-6 p.m. Thursday, April 19.
The event will begin with a dedication of a new flag pole on the grounds and a flag raising ceremony at 2 p.m. followed by an introduction and description of the renovation project, along with comments from visiting speakers, at 2:30 p.m.
“The idea for the tour kind of goes back to so many people discussing over the years what we’ve been doing with the Scott House and so many saying, ‘You know, I haven’t been in that building forever,’” said John Kellis, finance chairman of the historical society’s board of trustees. “We thought if we could publicize it and say some thank yous and have three hours where people could just come in and go through the building … we just hope a lot people hear about it and come through.”
Kellis said he believes that for most of its life the brick Scott House, completed in 1844, was painted white. The paint was removed from the brick during a previous renovation project in 1992.
The more recent renovation project included repairing, replacing and treating all the outdoor trim; repairing, replacing and treating all the outdoor porch railings; repairing the walls and flooring on the third floor; improving drainage surrounding the building; restoring the wrought iron gates and post caps on the fence in front of the mansion; replacing all interior office lighting; replacing the outbuilding roof; replacing the rubber roof and the widow’s walk; restoring siding on the cupola; replacing the concrete base, pillar and corner foundation; restoring the east side brick terrace; repairing and rebuilding a wall of the outbuilding; and more.
Those attending the event will receive a handout detailing those repairs, giving an extensive history of the Scott House and Scott family, and listing those who were instrumental in making the repairs come to fruition.
During the 1992 renovation, workers discovered etchings on a wall where the Scott children were apparently measured at various ages in the 1840s and 1850s. The markings include the children’s names, ages and heights when they were measured, and the date. Most of them are still legible. They were preserved behind glass during the 1992 renovation.
There are also many names, most with dates, of more recent Hillsboro residents written on the inside walls of the cupola. Mats will be placed on the roof outside the cupola so the roof will not be damaged by those wanting to walk on it and look around.
Kellis said the Scott House currently has four tenants and the rent they pay helps cover the cost of utilities and maintenance of the building.
The building and grounds are also available to rent for weddings, receptions, meetings and other occasions. Anyone interested can contact Vicki Knauff, historical society director, at 937-393-3392.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or firstname.lastname@example.org.