Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation is hosting a free workshop from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Sept. 29 to focus on all facets of pointing and cleaning of stone masonry, brick masonry and terracotta.
The workshop will be held at the Landmarks Housing Resource Center at 744 Rebecca Ave., Wilkinsburg. The presenter is Stephen Shelton, an expert in masonry restoration.
Many of the older houses in the Pittsburgh area have have suffered deterioration due to years of soot from the mills and freeze-thaw conditions which cause cracks because of water infiltration. Shelton will discuss paint removal, chemicals for cleaning, proper techniques and the different mortar mixes and colors used in the restoration process of brick, stone and terracotta buildings.
Shelton has worked in the construction industry since 1972, starting out as a masonry laborer. In his experience over the years, he has worked professionally as a masonry laborer, bricklayer, stone mason, tile setter, welder, electrician and plumber.
Having grown up in Pittsburgh's East End, he came to love the old buildings and houses built by the older generations of craftsmen. In 2001, Shelton started Shelton Masonry Inc. with himself and a wheelbarrow. Today, his company employs 22 people and is one of the premier restoration companies in the city, working on both commercial and residential projects.