The historic Port Colden School, located in Washington Township, New Jersey, was restored by deGruchy masonry during 2002.
During 2003, deGruchy masonry will assist Tinicum Civic Association in restoring the Stover Mill in Erwinna, Pennsylvania.

simple, yet profound message, of using strictly lime and sand mortars for executing repairs to historic brick and stone buildings built with the same. Like Bradbury who added music, William Revie of Scotland added the modern day photographic microscopy element that made this truth more vivid and memorable.
    I'm singing the virtues of lime along with others who seek to do the right thing when ordering repairs for our limited historic resources. Please turn in your hymnal to The Solid Rock and further test the truth in the message of the song that Jesus can be the rock that we can anchor ourselves to in life. Further test lime, another solid rock, and insure that conservation of historic masonry structures is anchored to endure as long and longer than this famous hymn.
    For more information on lime, preservation philosophy, and planning, come to the American Lime Conference in Monroe, Virginia, March 1-2. Call us or visit

Looking Ahead
Coming up in 2003, we may be repairing entry pillars for the historic Shippen Manor in Oxford, New Jersey. During 2001, deGruchy Masonry won the general contract for another pre-qualified project in New Jersey at the Oxford Furnace site in Oxford, New Jersey, where we did complete the work.
    We are not, however, forgetting our home in Penn's woods. Last month I visited Erwinna, Pennsylvania, where I met members of the Tinicum Civic Association. The group, founded in 1946, has owned the Stover Mill (ca.1832) since 1955. deGruchy Masonry plans to assist the Civic Association with the Stover Mill project.

    Oxford Furnace and Stover Mill were both previously repointed with inappropriate mortar. Our job, in recent years, has more frequently become undoing what has previously been done by others who didn't know about the damaging effects of Portland cement. Oxford was repointed with a soft Portland/lime mortar mix less than 15 years ago through a state funded conservation project. The stabilization we recently had to perform at Oxford required removing the Portland/lime mortar and bulging stone walls. We numbered each stone, dismantled the walls, and relayed them along with repointing the entire exterior using NHL lime and sand.
  A deGruchy Masonry employee sculpted this one-of-a-kind chimney pot using NHL 5. He plans to start his own business, designing and casting lime concrete ornaments and creating custom carvings.  
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Proactive Preservation
In each deGruchy Masonry newsletter I report on a proactive measure that degruchy Masonry attempts to accomplish within the year to support the cause of historic masonry conservation for some community. This year, we won the bid as general contractor, in a pre-qualified contractor invitation, to restore the exterior brickwork and woodwork of the historic Port Colden school in Port Colden, New Jersey, under the direction of architect John Bolt, AIA. When we received the contract an alternate/delete, to reinstall the four missing brick chimneys, had to be cut out of the contract due to a lack of funds. deGruchy Masonry is happy to report that the chimneys now exist and were set in place by our company free of any additional charge. The Washington Township Board of Education sent us a nice "Thank You" note. We were glad to help such a good group of proactive preservationists who love their old school building.
  The architect and conservator concluded that the Portland cement was the key contributing factor to the bulging stone and water-logged condition of the 1741 Furnace walls. The architect: Tom Hitchins,AIA. Conservator: Carla Cielo.

    In closing, I thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter and hope that you come to see us at the Greater Philadelphia Historic Home Show on January 25-26 at the Valley Forge Convention Center. Visit or call 717-796-2379 for additional information. deGruchy Masonry will be exhibiting with Pennsylvania Lime Works and other specialty masons who work with Natural Hydraulic Lime.