Restoration Report

St Augustine’s Restoration

Below you will find a reports on each of our major projects.
Austin is a small mountain town of under 300 people and limited resources. We treasure our historic sites though, and fortunately a hard working core of local volunteers are putting out tremendous efforts to preserve the precious history of Austin, and of Nevada.

St. Augustine’s has been saved from certain ruin by these efforts, funded by grants from the Nevada Commission for Cultural Affairs. We look forward to the day you can attend conferences or performances in our beautiful facility!

$13,000 Nevada Commision for Cultural Affairs Grant
Working off a grant from the Nevada Commission on Cultural Affairs, Preservation Historian Dan Pezzoni was commissioned to report on the history, current condition, and future restoration/renovation of St. Augustine's. Mr. Pezzoni remains as a consultant to ensure all work done on the structure is appropriate and within the Secretary of the Interior Standards. Dan researched and authored the original report to the National Register of Historic Places which resulted in St. Augustine's being listed on that prestigious list.
>>>Click for the National Register Report. >>>Click here for Dan's 2005 report.
Nevada Commision for Cultural Affairs Grant
The stone retaining wall holding up the front courtyard was deteriorating to the point that the spire and entrance to the church were in danger of being undermined. Another CCA Grant enabled us to build a new wall. Chuck Bispo, local stone mason who builds dry-stack walls using the same methods as those used in early Austin (1860s), constructed the new wall over a two year period.
Click here for the full story with pictures.
Nevada Commision for Cultural Affairs Grant
An incredible, and as it turned out, just in the nick of time project was the roof reconstruction. The magnitude of the work was overwhelming, but nothing compared to the urgency. As we soon found out, the entire roof was nearing the point of full collapse. Again, the Nevada Commission on Cultural Affairs came through and literally saved this treasure.
Click here for the full story with pictures.
Nevada Commision for Cultural Affairs Gran
This project was completed in 2009. It finished site work on the north side of the church, the courtyard, and reconstructed the front entrance, incorporating ADA design.
Nevada Commision for Cultural Affairs Grant
This project is slated for construction in the summer and fall of 2010. We believe that we have enough funding to remove all the windows of the church and restore them to weather-tight, operating condition. Doors are also in the plan, pending availablity of funds.
Update: Although we ran out of money before the sacristry and lower level doors could be completed, we were able to address the windows. All plexiglass was removed, and 140 years of paint hand-stripped from the muntins and sashes (a gruelling 5 week process). Q & D Construction's wonderful carpenter, Steve, was able to save and re-use nearly every piece of original wood! The church now has clear windows which is not only historically correct, but allows visitors to peer in the windows and see the magnificent murals.
National Park Service
"Save America's Treasures" Grant
Awarded through efforts by Senator Harry Reid's office. Requires matching funds. See 2010 CCA Grant. This grant will enable us to restore the Henry Kilgen Nine Rank Pipe Organ, the only one known to exist in it's original state, and stabilize the historic wall murals.
Nevada Commision for Cultural Affairs Grant
Awarded in 2012, this grant lost it's funding when Nevada, due to the recession, decided not to sell the bonds which financed the CCA grant program. This put St.Augustine's restoration on hold and jeopardized the Save America's Treasures Grant. However, St. Augustine's, along with 2 other restoration projects, was selected to have its funding restored and is now working on completing the lower level meeting room, bathrooms, and catering kitchen.