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Gaff, Thomas, House (Hillforest)

Aurora, Indiana
County of Dearborn.
213 Fifth Street
National Register Number: 71000005
Resource type: Building.
Property type: Domestic - single dwelling. The threat level was Satisfactory in
Congressional District: IN-9 Certified Local Government: NO
This NHL offers public access.
Please contact the NHL directly for visitor information.
Current use/information: Museum.

Statement of Significance (as of designation - October 5, 1992):
Hillforest is an exceptional example of a wealthy family's estate on the bluffs above the Ohio River, a remarkable remnant of the golden era in the 1850s when enterprising merchants and shipper of the river valley built homes that displayed their prosperity and patronage of the arts. Design of the house has recently been attributed to Isaiah Rogers (1800-1869), a leading American architect of the second quarter of the 19th century.

Currently, there is no threat to the landmark.

A major restoration was undertaken the winter months (2005-2006) on the ceiling of the central hallway to repair problems stemming from plaster pulling away form lath. A master plasterer pulled the original plaster back to the lath and applied a new layer over the original, detailing to recreate the features of the original ceiling. A paint analysis was completed on the ceiling medallion and it was determined that it is original to the 1855 NHL. The ceiling and the medallion were both repainted.

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