Exterior view of a historical home structure, Carey Cottage at Creek Farm. The building features a large veranda style porch.

JSA Design received the 2021 Rick and Duffy Monahon Merit Award for Design Excellence in Architectural Restoration and Preservation from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) New Hampshire for the firm’s work on Carey Cottage at Creek Farm, a historic property in Portsmouth. Carey Cottage was one of 12 projects honored by AIANH’s Excellence in Architecture Awards program this year; winners were judged by a jury of architects from AIA-CT and selected based on excellence in design, including functionality, sustainability, building performance, creativity and client goals.

“The jury appreciated the sensitive restoration and adaptation of the original structure and the literal removal of layers that took away from its (Carey Cottage’s) original structure,” jurors noted in the 2021 award statement. “We appreciate the sensitive touch, attention to detail and care to restoration, particularly on the interior. It was an excellent job.”

Carey Cottage, built between 1888-1892 as a summer home for Portsmouth philanthropist Arthur Astor Carey, was slated for demolition until a community campaign to save it led to a partnership between a local philanthropist and a developer to restore the historic building. The Arts & Crafts-style structure was designed by Boston architect Alexander Wadsworth Longfellow and is among the few remaining Arts & Crafts style “summer cottages” on the New Hampshire Seacoast. Owned by The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, the cottage now houses nonprofit organizations including GoodWork, a nonprofit incubator, the Conservation Law Foundation, and Blue Ocean Society, among others; provides rental housing for people working in the nonprofit sector; and offers limited public access to its forested property and nearby Sagamore Creek.

The Rick & Duffy Monahon Award for Design Excellence in Architectural Restoration and Preservation promotes outstanding and exemplary historic preservation projects as defined by their sensitivity to a historic structure and its surrounding environment; the quality of architecture, workmanship and materials; the degree of challenge; and community support for the project.

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