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Jan Hird Pokorny Associates, Inc.

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Michael Devonshire

Director of Conservation


Michael Devonshire is an architectural conservator with over twenty five years experience in the field of historic preservation. He is skilled in materials analysis, conditions assessment, materials specification, and project management. His knowledge of building documentation and technology is comprehensive, with a particular emphasis on pre-Colonial Dutch and English wood frame buildings.

Mr. Devonshire started his career as a restoration coordinator of the New York State Bureau of Historic Sites’ office at the Schermerhorn Row Block in New York City. From 1981 to 1985 Mr. Devonshire served as senior conservator for the Center for Building Conservation (CBC), performing construction history documentation and materials investigation. For CBC he directed several restoration projects, including the Hunterfly Road Houses in Brooklyn, New York, and the Lord & Burnham Palmhouse at Old Westbury Gardens on Long Island. He also directed window restoration and energy conservation retrofit tests at the Tweed Courthouse in New York City, and worked on the Carnegie Hall restoration. From 1985 to 1987 Mr. Devonshire was a restoration foreman at the National Trust Restoration Workshop in Tarrytown, New York. In that position, he supervised restoration work at Wards Castle in Rye, New York, a structure that pioneered the use of reinforced concrete in the United States.

As Senior Architectural Conservator with JHPA, Mr. Devonshire supervised probe work of the copper cladding at the Erie-Lackawanna Rail and Ferry Terminal in Hoboken, New Jersey, and conducted a condition survey at Mills Mansion State Historic Site in Staatsburg, New York. In addition, he was responsible for restoration work at both the Church of the Incarnation (1864), which received a Victorian Society Award, and the Morris-Jumel Mansion (1765), which received a New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission Award, and Walnford House, in Walnford, New Jersey which received a NJHT award. He also directed the compilation of a historic structure report for the Merchant’s House Museum (1832) in New York City. Mr. Devonshire recently directed field restoration of the Guilin Building (1920) in Shanghai, PRC, and Manitoga, the Russel Wright Studio, in Garrison, New York.

  • 1979
    • Historic Preservation, Roger Williams University: Aegean School of Art, Paros, Greece
    • Department of Architecture, Rhode Island School of Design
    • Attingham School for the Study of the English Country House
  • 1990-present
    • Adjunct Professor, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation
  • 2005-present
    • Preservation Institute: Nantucket
  • 2010-present
    • University of Massachusetts Amherst and Hancock Shaker Village

Mr. Devonshire serves on the ICOMOS International Wood Committee, the New York State Historic Preservation Board, and the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission.

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