State of Tennessee Capital Chambers Renovations
Architect: Contacts Without Company
The Tennessee State Capital building was completed in 1859. The 35 foot walls and many of the columns in the interior of the house and senate chambers were constructed of Tennessee limestone. Lesser columns in the senate chamber, along with a beam that spanned the entire interior of the chamber, were made of marble. All of these stone structures had become stained and discolored from years of exposure to tobacco smoke.
As the marble structures contained only surface stains, they were cleaned with ProSoCo's Stand Off® Liquid Marble Cleaner. This product is removed 15 or 20 minutes after application and worked well on the surface stains of the marble. The beam in the senate chamber had been painted in the past and had to have the paint removed before cleaning in the same manner. However, the porous limestone walls and columns had absorbed their stains deep into the stone.
ProSoCo's Sure Klean® 1260 Limestone & Marble Poultice was used to clean the limestone. WASCO used 8,500 pounds of the poultice to accomplish the task. The paste was applied in a thickness of approximately one-forth inch to the walls and columns. Each section was then covered with thin sheets of plastic. The poultice was allowed to dry overnight and each morning workers removed the plastic and dried poultice along with the stains the poultice had absorbed. The walls and columns were then wiped with sponges soaked in fresh water and allowed to dry. Troughs were constructed at the base of the columns to collect the waste water and a wet vacuum was used to remove the water and residue from the troughs. This restoration cleaning process returned the limestone to its original, natural pristine color.
The masonry restoration contract for the project was approximately $250,000.