The Georgia Trust

2015 PRESERVATION AWARDS: EXCELLENCE IN PRESERVATION

CHESSER-WILLIAMS HOUSE
Buford, Gwinnett County

The Chesser-Williams House, a vernacular I-house dating to the mid-19th century, is particularly notable for its extensive decorative folk painting. The house was relocated to the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center in order to save it. The hand-painted folk art is attributed to a German itinerant artist and according to noted historic paint expert Frank Welsh, the house "may be the only surviving example of exterior painted decorations in Georgia, and possibly the South." The original exterior murals were removed for their preservation, and then painstakingly recreated on the restored structure; the interior painting remains in place. The seven-year project was completed in October of 2014, with the goal to use the home as a resource for teaching students and the public about the importance of historic preservation.


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