Early 20th-Century homes surveyed

Architectural historians Stacey Vairo and Lucas Karmazinas will lead an illustrated talk on Thursday, Sept. 27, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Wilton Historical Society, 224 Danbury Road.

The lecture, Wilton’s Architecture: An Update to the Historic House Survey, will focus on the historic house survey Vairo and Karmazinas conducted for the society this spring and summer. Funded by a $30,000 grant from Connecticut’s State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), the survey was the second of a multi-phase Wilton Historical Society project — the first of which was conducted in 1989.

For this phase of the survey, Vairo and Karmazinas primarily focused on approximately 400 structures built  between 1920 and 1940. Styles of this time period include Colonial Revival, craftsman/bungalow, Spanish Eclectic, and Tudor revival.

For the survey, Vairo and Karmazinas drove around town looking at and taking photos of historic structures and used various resources to conduct research, including old maps, town land records, genealogy records, historical society and Wilton Library History Room archives. They also consulted with Wilton Historical Society Co-Director Allison Sanders, local architect Rob Sanders, and town historians Carol and Bob Russell.

Allison Sanders said another “crucial aspect” of Karmazinas and Vairo’s assignment was to digitize the approximately 319 structures included in the first phase of the inventory survey and obtain access to the original photographs at the state archive.

“It was a huge undertaking,” she said.

About 160 of the studied structures have been added to Wilton’s Historic Resource Inventory (HRI).

Inventory forms were prepared for each of the selected structures, said Sanders — each containing a photo, research sources, and information like “the date built, style, roof style, condition, location integrity, notable site features, historic and architectural importance.”

During the lecture, Vairo and Karmazinas will talk about how they conducted the survey, as well as interesting finds and appropriate areas that could be studied for historic district designation.

The talk will be followed by a reception, during which owners of any of the buildings that appear on Wilton’s HRI lists will also have the chance to pick up a copy of their home’s history.

To register for the lecture, email info@wiltonhistorical.org or call 203-762-7257.