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Projects to Restore Officers' Row Exteriors at NRHC

Sometime after their original construction around the first decade of the last century, all four single family officers' houses on Officers' Row were retrofitted with external, north wall, side stairwells, which then allowed entry and egress from a retro-fitted, mid-storey door and landing between the first and second floors. Photographic evidence suggests the additions were constructed between 1929 and 1931, though the exact date of construction is not yet certain.

What is certain is that these external stairwells, which are covered with clapboard siding and non-symmetrical sloped roofs, are not original to Buildings 28, 29, 31 and 32, and are, moreover, collapsing and detaching from the main structures.

Based on considerations of historical originality, structural aesthetics, prohibitive replacement cost, and non-code conformance as emergency exits, and in consultation with Missoula's local Historic Preservation officer, NRHC's board decided to remove all four stairwells, beginning with Building-32. The mid-storey doors will be replaced with historically-accurate window facsimiles.

Additionally, original upper front porch roof decorative railings, together with original decorative window shutters, will be restored to these four houses and to all other Row houses. Along with restoration of early twentieth-century landscaping, the Row front project is expected to span several years, and will be funded by surplus operating revenues and grants