About Me

Dan Miller | Old House PorchesWe bought our first old house in 1975 only because it was all we could afford at $29,500.  We started fixing it up and noticed there were marks on the porch for details that had been there.  We wanted to put them back so we started studying other old house porches to find details that would match our marks.  That began my 40 year love affair with old house porches.  I have made several and helped with many more.

After retiring from 33 years of teaching I started an architectural woodworking business specializing in old houses.  I am very lucky to be able to make details for a lot of porches.

417 Algona, Elgin - Before (1975) | Old House Porches - Dan Miller
417 Algona, Elgin - After | Old House Porches - Dan Miller

Here is the porch after we put back the missing details.

By 1979 we had finished rehabbing our first house.  Being a teacher I needed more projects for therapeutic reasons so we bought an investment property as shown on the right. Coming home, changing into work clothes and getting involved in a project takes your mind off of everything else.

The home was three units so it paid for itslef as we rehabbed it. I rebuilt the porches.  Luckily all the parts were there so rotten ones just needed to be duplicated, not like our first house where we had to come up with our own elements. Everything being brown did not show off the details.

My wife chose the colors and we painted it ourselves.  The home is on a busy street so people used to yell compliments to us or honk their horns.

I  repaired the porches and my wife painted them. We sold the house in 1986 after which it went through 30 years of neglect.  In 2016 it was purchased by a rehabber and underwent a terrific amount of work.  I spent six weeks there repairing the porches and doing interior trim work.

Click here to see  a slide show of the saga of the home.