Congratulations to my husband Edo!! He was the recipient of an award recently from The Maryland Historical Trust. He and a small crew of guys from his work spent some time last year restoring an old building on the property of the Baltimore Zoo. I have been to the Zoo several times and when he tried to explain to me the building he was working on I was baffled. After seeing some of the before pictures I get it now. The thing was covered in weeds and bushes and no one would ever have though much of it.
At the awards ceremony I learned some of the history of the building:
The Maryland Building was designed by noted Baltimore architect George A. Frederick for the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. It is one of only two State buildings that have survived, the other being the Ohio Building. The building was dismantled and relocated to the Maryland Zoo after the close of the Exposition and had fallen into a state of disrepair in recent years. Rather than demolish the deteriorated, but salvageable building, the Maryland Zoo chose to restore the building for classroom and administrative use. The building has been carefully restored, including historically accurate paint colors and exterior detailing, while meeting all modern safety, accessibility, and functional requirements.
I did some googling and was able to find a very cool site through the Free Library of Philadelphia with information about the Exposition.
Below is a slide show with some of the before and after pictures of The Maryland House. Note: Don't let those Amish guys fool you - according to my husband they totally use power tools!