The decor and furnishings at Boys Town’s Father Flanagan house are true to the year 1929, and many of Father Edward J. Flanagan’s personal possessions, including a cherished desk made especially for him by his boys, are on display. The Colonial Revival-style building built 90 years ago (Flanagan lived there until 1941) now serves as a museum on the Boys Town campus. The Flanagan house has always been carefully maintained, but last fall, its windows were in need of replacement.
“The Father Flanagan House is a National Historic Landmark, and considered by the National Park Service to be the most historic structure in the village of Boys Town. Preserving its historic texture was paramount in selecting new windows,” Tom Lynch, director of community programs at Boys Town, said.
The site manager for the project, Jerry Murley, said Pella was able to match the 1920s wood-frame windows perfectly.
“The product fit really well and our in-house crews that did the pre-finishing were able to match the old stain,” he said. “We had people at Boys Town say they had looked at the windows after we were done and didn’t even know they’d been replaced. One woman told us it’s a lot quieter inside, though.”
The building was in remarkably good shape for being nearly a century old, Murley explained, but the installers were extraordinarily respectful of every surface they touched.
“You have to be careful because of everything original that’s there, so putting everything back in pristine condition is always a challenge,” he said. “We subcontracted through Jurgens Construction, who does a lot of this type of work and are very skilled with it.”
Clients like Boys Town trust Pella not only for the level of care taken with historically significant projects, but also for the quality of workmanship.
“We’re able to meet the needs of any historical building. We have the skill set and talents to make sure the product looks exactly the same,” Murley said.
“Historical structures aid a community in defining their identity through the decades. The sensitive preservation of historic structures is paramount in helping to maintain their unique qualities for future generations,” Lynch said.