Call-Collins Historic Renovations at The Grove

Florida Department of Management Services, Tallahassee, FL

Size of Project:
9,603 sf
Cost of Project:
$5,043,216

The Call-Collins House at The Grove included exploratory demolition to facilitate design, ACM and lead paint abatement, and selective demolition of interior features, foundation underpinning, below grade water proofing, historic masonry crack remediation, masonry restoration, chimney restoration, window restoration, removal and replacement of window headers, plaster restoration, paint removal to expose and refinish historically significant elements, stairway restoration, wood floor removal reinstall/refinishing and complete MEP removal/replacement.

The Call-Collins House sits on a little oasis at The Grove, tucked just next to the Florida Governor’s mansion. As the house competes for the title of oldest existing residence in Tallahassee, constructed between 1825 and 1836, its exemplary historic restoration was essential. Over the years the site has served as a home to past Florida governors Richard Keith Call and LeRoy Collins, hotel, boarding house, and will now be transformed into a house museum and cultural facility for public use.

While preparing for waterproofing, Allstate Construction found an unexpected contributor to the house’s foundation.  Two tombstones were uncovered at the foot of the basement’s exterior stairs.  Immediately, Allstate notified the architect and pulled in the expert archeologist.  The archeologist and Division of Historical Resources have worked on the site previously as other artifacts have been dug up, including a toy trinket, a skillet, glass bottles, keys, ceramics, tools, chinaware, and lieutenant dog tags.  In the meantime, Allstate shored up around the tombstones until the final decision was made to remove the headstones as no human remains were found.   One is said to honor a surveyor Call might have hired in the construction phase who passed in the 1830s while the other stone dates 1918 commemorating the death of a man of just twenty years. Both are set to be on display in the house’s museum along with the collection encountered during the renovation.   

Call-Collins is on the National Register of Historic Places and will be one of three LEED certified historic house museums in the United States.