Missouri Botanical Garden

Project Background

The Missouri Botanical Garden is a National Historic Landmark (NRHP #71001065) and the oldest botanical garden in continuous operation in the nation. The Garden was founded by Henry Shaw and opened to the public in 1859, and its historic masonry perimeter wall is more than 157 years old. The 2500-foot long wall at 12-feet high was a random-laid stone wall with rusticated dressed stone columns. The wall was dry-stacked and then filled with mortar. This project addressed the 800-feet of wall experiencing severe degradation with some areas already collapsed.


Full documentation of every stone with random layout along the 800-foot length

Extensive evaluation of the historic techniques, patterns, and rules by the original masons

Full deconstruction of the wall with stones carefully catalogues and reinstalled within the same historic panel.

Coordinated full mason training with a masonry specialist for proper techniques to repair the wall

Comprehensive project with full time construction observation and administration

Save America’s Treasures grant coordination


ICA’s document methods were comprehensive and highly detailed. Every stone was deconstructed, cleaned, catalogued, and reinstalled within its original panel, The historic techniques, patterns, and rules of the original masons were carefully studied and presented at the masonry training for every mason that worked on the project. This intensive process was coordinated through full time, on-site construction administration, so that the reconstructed wall would blend seamlessly with existing adjacent wall areas.


National Park Service - Save America’s Treasures grant project

2020 McReynolds Award winner

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Full restoration of extensive masonry perimeter wall 

Saving America’s Treasure Grant Project 

On-Site training and certification for masons 

2020 Missouri Preservation — The McReynolds Award Winner 

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