Learn home restoration techniques from the experts restoring Henry Ford's historic Fair Lane estate

Fans of Henry Ford, historic home restorations, and history, in general, have a reason to pay attention to what's going on at the historic Fair Lane estate in Dearborn. 
And new workshop series will offer old building buffs a sneak peek into the restoration work going on at the famous Henry and Clara Ford estate.

Artisans working on the home will offer classes and hands-on demonstrations in home restoration techniques while museum staff will offer tours.

"The estate has been closed for a number of years while we've been working to restore it," says Ann Loshaw, Vice President of Education & Visitor Experience at The Historic Ford Estates. "This gives folks a sneak peak at what's been going on but also some take-away skills."

The first, a class on stonework restoration and tuck-pointing skills, takes place at the Fair Lane estate Saturday, Jan. 28 from 1 to 4 p.m. The remaining classes teach paint and plaster skills on Feb. 25, wood floor refinishing on March 25, how to clean and protect metals on April 29, and how to remove, repair, re-glaze, and re-install wood windows on May 20.

The museum may start a second series depending on initial demand for the first. Participants may also have their own questions about home restoration techniques, which may inspire ideas for new courses, Loshaw says.

There were several factors that inspired the workshops.

"As museum professionals, we found the process of restoration fascinating. And then working with donors and museum studies students and seeing their interest," says Loshaw. "Plus with the popularity of home restoration TV shows, it's a perfect pairing. This is a great opportunity to meet with the experts."

Henry and Clara Ford moved into Fair Lane in 1915. It is one of the first historic sites to be designated a National Historic Landmark. It is on track for a 2020 re-opening following several years of restoration work.

Tickets for each class is $45/person and are available online.

Henry Ford Estate-Fair Lane is located at 4901 Evergreen Rd. in Dearborn.

More Henry Ford in the news: The museum at The Henry Ford campus in Dearborn is being re-branded as the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation. Officials say the name change better reflects the museum's main focus.

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