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At the beginning of the Restoration one of the mysteries of the ca. 1764 house was how the attic, or garret as it was called in the 18th century, was accessed.  Garrets were often used for storage and a ladder or stair that led to a hatch which opened into the garret would have been a typical feature of a house like Montpelier.  Evidence for just such a hatch was discovered when the plaster was removed from the ceiling of the closet in the Upper South Passage.


The ceiling framing in the Upper South Passage Closet.