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Trillium Dell Publications

Review of Oak: The Frame of Civilization

Monday, June 15, 2009
Spring has finally made it to most of North America, and with it I have the perfect suggestion to accompany your warmer evenings. With a a degree in forestry and 13 years experience working oak from forest to finished product, I could only imagine that Oak: The Frame of Civilization, sent to me by a friend, was another in a series of books that just scratches the surface of the tree that I have come to depend on for a living. How nice it was to be surprised and Read More

Remembrance of barns past and present

Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Gindler crew shares camaraderie & connection to living history The Gindler barn project in July was a typical Guild success story. Three parties had been at work for a few years before a team of Guild framers showed up in Collinsville, Ill. The local group, Collinsville Area Recreation District had a dream of recreating an early Euro-American farmstead. They raised money and organized themselves to make it happen, contracting Trillium Dell Timberworks (Rick Collins), to help through the logistics of dismantling, storing, raising more money, and ultimately putting the barn together on site. The Guild backed the project inviting members to participate. Read More

Timber Frame Barns of Midwest America

Wednesday, November 28, 2007
It has been a great pleasure and privilege to be involved in a career that enables me to authentically restore old and historic structures in the American Midwest. Our work has involved projects as diverse as a 19th-century hydroelectric plant on the Illinois River, once owned by Thomas Edison, the restoration of tornado and lightning damaged church steeples, all manner of log buildings, historic Chicago store fronts, courthouses, State Capitol buildings and 18th century forts, as well as timber truss work of all types. But I have found a particular fondness for our 19th-century barns of the Midwest. It has been the most rewarding of all our work to restore, replicate, move and otherwise salvage barns, and thereby some aspect of our agricultural heritage. Read More

Creating models of sustainability in urban places

Saturday, July 21, 2007
I was pondering the word “sustainability” last week while working on a project near St. Louis. We had been hired to take a barn down for the Collinsville Area Recreational District (C.A.R.D.). This particular barn was probably built  around 1820 and most likely remodeled extensively in the 1860s. Read More

Clay plaster and timber frames—a green combination

Monday, January 1, 2007
American Clay Plaster Timber Frames.pdf Read More

Rebuilding a Potawatomi Cabin

Friday, December 1, 2006
The Citizen Potawatomi Tribe was originally from the upper Midwest. In the late 1860s, as the white settlers’ frontier drive pushed west, they opted to sell their allotments and move into the new territories so that they might live under their own government. The tribe, numbering roughly 28 members in four families, came to Oklahoma, near what is now Shawnee. They moved to a fertile and wooded area between the North Canadian and South Canadian rivers, now Potawatomi County. When they arrived in Oklahoma, some of the first permanent dwellings they built were log cabins, using local logs but importing windows, doors and planking hauled via wagon from Coffeyville, Kansas. Read More

Respectful Restoration

Monday, November 13, 2006
The Illinois Yearly Friends Meeting House in McNabb, Ill., was raised in 1874 by English-descended Quakers moving west, and has since withstood tornadoes, termites, lightning and other mortal threats. When the original Quaker settlers moved to central Illinois earlier in the 19th century, they built their small community on some of the most fertile land in North America. Read More

Changing Landscapes

Thursday, July 21, 2005
Sustainable practices go hand in hand with good building techniques and an ecological mindset. What is the measure of sustainable buildings? I believe it is, in part, building structures that outlast the natural resources that produced them. It may also include constructing them so that they have functional adaptive reuse. In many cases, the demise of structures seems related to their inability to be modified for a future landscape. Fitting a building style to a particular climate is critical for its staying power as well. Too often, good, well-built buildings fail because of improper foundations and poor roofing materials. Read More

Think Sustainability

Sunday, November 28, 2004
The recent Eastern Conference in southwestern Pennsylvania offered the perfect opportunity to help kick off a new series of articles in Scantlings about sustainability. For many of us, our businesses and daily lives revolve around sustainability. Whether we restore older structures, harvest timber from managed forests, use reclaimed timber for new construction, or manufacture or distribute other sustainable products for the construction industry, sustainability is the key to the future. Read More
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