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The George Eastman Museum seeks funding for ongoing restoration projects throughout the historic mansion

May 10th, 2018

The George Eastman Museum is hosting a community forum on Wednesday, May 16, at 6 p.m., to share information about its historic mansion restoration program and update community members about the next phase.

The George Eastman Museum is in need of support for completion of the colonnade restoration efforts that began in 2014. The museum will submit an application to the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation to request funding for the construction phase of this project, which is expected to begin in the summer of 2019.

The current preservation initiative at the museum began four years ago, when Bero Architecture PLLC conducted a site condition survey of George Eastman’s historic residence. The survey was funded by a grant from the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation through Title 9 of the Environmental Protection Act of 1993 and the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council. The survey identified necessary and urgent restoration and repairs of various areas of the historic house and several garden structures, with an estimated total cost of $3.5 million.

In 2014, the George Eastman Museum received a grant of $500,000 from the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation to support restoration of the mansion’s East Porch and Colonnade. Matching funds to support these projects have been generously donated by Georgia Potter Gosnell, the Davenport-Hatch Foundation, the Rochester Area Community Foundation, and others. Restoration efforts will preserve the historic mansion and ensure that all areas remain safe and publicly accessible.

Since 2014, the museum has completed restoration work on the historic mansion’s East Porch and porte cochere. In addition to the colonnade restoration, current projects include the repair and restoration of 68 windows in the historic mansion. These windows are original to the house and were installed between 1903 and 1905. Customized, properly fitted, preservation-approved storm windows will also be installed to improve energy efficiency while preserving the historic elements and appearance of the property. In addition, 44 sets of window shutters will also be restored. This work is expected to be completed in 2018.

The George Eastman Museum invites the public to attend a community forum to learn more about the status of the historic mansion restoration project and its next phase. The forum will be held on Wednesday, May 16, at 6 p.m. in the Curtis Theatre at the George Eastman Museum, 900 East Avenue, Rochester (use the Café & Store entrance on the west side of the building).

About the George Eastman Museum

Founded in 1947, the George Eastman Museum is the world’s oldest photography museum and one of the largest film archives in the United States, located on the historic Rochester estate of entrepreneur and philanthropist George Eastman, the pioneer of popular photography. Its holdings comprise more than 400,000 photographs, 28,000 motion picture films, the world’s preeminent collection of photographic and cinematographic technology, one of the leading libraries of books related to photography and cinema, and extensive holdings of documents and other objects related to George Eastman. As a research and teaching institution, the Eastman Museum has an active publishing program and, through its two joint master’s degree programs with the University of Rochester, makes critical contributions to the fields of film preservation and of photographic preservation and collection management. For more information, visit

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