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How did the Restoration Team know that there was paneling in the ca. 1764 Dining Room?  When portions of the post-Madison plaster were removed from the dining room's north wall it was discovered that ca. 1764 wrought nails were only found in the plaster lath located approximately four feet above the floor level. Below this level, only ca. 1845 machine cut lath nails were found. Because the machine cut nails were found to date to after the Madisons had sold Montpelier, it's clear that plaster had not been found on the lower third of the walls during the period when the Madisons owned the Mansion.


The north wall of the ca. 1764 Dining Room.  All of the ca. 1845 lath has been removed from the wall to the left of the door, leaving only the ca. 1764 lath in place.