Of the eight intact casement windows in the house only one has its original hardware intact. That window is in the kitchen, in what used to be the breakfast nook. My last post described my successful search for vintage replacement hardware for four of the other casement windows. But before I hit the salvage shops , I took a close look at the latch on the kitchen window.
By comparing the measurements on the other windows to the kitchen window latch, I knew that the kitchen latch was different than the ones in the living room and front entry. Nevertheless, I thought it would be a good idea to remove the latch to be able to physically compare it on the other windows. When I pulled the screws, here is what I found:
Paint! What a cover-up!
Now I know that the woodwork was painted at one point and much of it was later restored. But why on earth would someone go to the trouble of stripping a painted window yet never bother to remove the latch to clean under it? It seems like it would be harder to strip paint with the latch on than with it off.
It doesn’t really matter that the paint is there. I put the latch back and the paint is covered again. Still, this is one of the more curious cut-corners I’ve run across here.
On the other hand, I suppose it’s possible that this was done on purpose as a preservation record. If the window was always painted– definitely a possibility in a kitchen– keeping a record of the original paint hidden under the latch would preserve that information.