Archive | New Projects RSS feed for this section

Tips for Young Professionals Entering the Field of Historic Preservation

13 Feb

Entering the preservation field can be especially challenging, since it is a relatively niche market. Unless you want to write historic resource evaluations all day at a CRM firm, the jobs available are difficult to find. “It will all work out,” and “something will turn up” are probably the least useful phrases you hear when looking for that first job after graduating or changing fields. You feel qualified and full of energy, ready to throw yourself into a job. Any job.

Application after application, painstakingly tailored for each position, are answered with indifferent silence. You might take the shotgun approach and apply to positions that you are over-qualified for, and those you are under-qualified for, and are still meeting with no success. From one Millennial to another, you’re doing it wrong.

First, pay more attention to which jobs you actually want, and just apply to those. Use the time you save from applying to fewer jobs by volunteering or teaching yourself a new skill. It is also beneficial to join a professional network in your area. You can get more involved in the field, make contacts, and usually get a free lunch out of the events!

Second, value paid internships. Despite what we’ve been told all our lives, there is nothing wrong with graduating from an undergraduate or graduate program and starting out as an intern. Even if the internship is not offering you the exact work you’re looking for, the company or organization might be a great fit.

The applications you do want to send (after whittling down your massive list of potentials), send to a peer for review. You may also want to contact a professor or former colleague and ask them to write you a general reference, so you have one quick at hand. Be sure to follow up on your applications at least once, if only for the closure of rejection (since that courtesy is rare).

Most importantly, be proactive! Get out there and meet people! Volunteering in the field looks great on your resume, and you will probably meet some useful contacts. A volunteer position, like an internship, could easily lead to a permanent position. Contact companies or individuals who are doing what you want to be doing. Ask for their advice, they will probably be happy to give you pointers! Not only will you get some quick and free career advice, but you’ve just made an excellent contact. Don’t forget to stay in touch with former coworkers or professors. Your contacts are important to your career, and it’s wasteful to let those relationships fade.

Finally, don’t buy into the fantasy that the job you land will be your ‘forever job’. There is no such thing. Your life will change, and your work will change as a result. Try to enjoy the in-between time, where the possibilities are endless, and your near-future is a mystery.

Happy trails!

By Jean Stoll, Historic Specialist

Celebrating Seven Years!

5 May


Aeon celebrated our seventh year as an independent business with our annual Cinco de Mayo party, known within the company as Aeon Independence Day! Staff  celebrated with barbeque and beer with many family members attending. Aeon is also celebrating the hiring of two new staff members, Jean Stoll and Daniel Holcombe. We are thrilled to add these two members to our team and thanks to all of our collaborators, colleagues, and clients that make what we do such a joy. Cheers!

Union Station Rostral Columns

8 Feb


Aeon is pleased to report that the restoration of Union Station’s rostral columns has been completed. The Christman Company along with Robinson Ironworks and United Building Envelope Restoration have completed the final touchups. We are thrilled to have worked with the Union Station Redevelopment Corp on this project. Work included complete dismantling of the ornamental cast iron and granite balustrades, off site restoration and refinishing, and restored gilding and new LED lamping of the light fixtures.

APT EVENT – Union Station Rostral Column Restoration

4 Nov

Wednesday, November 09, 2016
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
50 Mass Ave NE, Washington DC West Plaza

Please join The Christman Company for a tour of the ongoing restoration work on the rostral columns and balustrades at Union Station, including the opportunity to see disassembly of the cast iron columns.  The second set of columns and lampposts will be removed from site on November 9th and returned later this year.  Off-site restoration will include the abatement of existing coatings, cast iron repairs, re-casting of broken elements and the application of high performance coatings.  The tour will  also highlight masonry cleaning and restoration of the Vermont white granite balustrades.  Masonry work includes general cleaning, graffiti removal pinning of the balusters, removal of embedded fasteners, patching and crack repair.

Soon after the completion of Washington Union Station in 1908, a plaza was added at the front of the building.  Columbus Plaza was designed to include two gateways consisting a pair of rostral columns and lampposts mounted on granite balustrades.  The area between the columns was originally open to traffic, but was converted to be sidewalk by 1985.  Columbus Plaza was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.  

The tour will begin at the West Plaza, located in front of the Union Station Metro Station at 6:30pm, and will be led by representatives from Union Station Redevelopment Corporation, Aeon Preservation Services, and The Christman Company. Registration is not required, but please arrive a few minutes before 6:30 to ensure you don’t miss the tour departure.

Restoration of the Mexican War Midshipmen’s Monument

9 Sep

Aeon just completed the restoration of the Mexican War Midshipmen’s Monument, Aeon’s second major project at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis. The monument was an 1848 gift by the Academy’s Brigade of Midshipmen. The restoration was made possible thanks to a gift from the Class of 1986. The monument was unveiled at a ceremony this morning during reunion weekend.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Deicing Options for Historic Buildings

14 Jan


Corrosion on an Aluminum Door Frame caused by Deicing Salts

In any climate where temperatures reach below freezing, deicing walkways will be required for safety reasons.  Yet all deicing methods are not created equal. The best available method is mechanical heating of the walkway surface to eliminate the chance for ice to form; however, this method is cost-prohibitive and not always practical to install for historic buildings. Alternative chemical deicers are more affordable, but come with a host of other considerations, including their compatibility with historic building materials.

The most common deicer used in the United States and internationally is sodium chloride (NaCl, or table salt).  Sodium chloride is inexpensive and easily sourced, but employing it as a deicer can be very harmful to historic building fabric. Both sodium chloride and other salt-based deicers—including calcium chloride (CaCl2), magnesium chloride (MgCl2), and potassium chloride (KCl)—are highly corrosive to many building materials. So though sodium chloride is cost-effective, using it or other chlorides as deicers near a historic structure will necessitate more money and effort spent in conservation repairs over time.

Instead, building stewards should consider acetate deicers, the gentlest of which is calcium magnesium acetate (CMA).  Sodium acetate (NaOAc) is also minimally corrosive.  A third acetate deicer, potassium acetate (CH3COOK), is more corrosive but still less harmful than chloride deicers. By choosing one of these deicers instead of sodium chloride, time,money, and historic integrity can ultimately be saved.

New Projects for a New Year

29 Dec

Union Station 1924 Press Photo

Aeon is wrapping up 2015 and getting ready for 2016 with a number of new projects including the restoration of the c1908 Rostral Columns at Union Station in Washington DC. This project involves laser scanning the ornamental cast iron columns, light poles, and granite to create CAD drawings to assist us in developing a program of repair.

DSC_0695 (1280x1126)