Ideally, proper restoration of an historic building means returning it to its original condition, complete in all details, including interior decoration and furnishings. While that approach might be lauded by purists, it would be extremely disturbing to building inspectors, fire marshalls and insurance companies who have no appreciation for lead water pipe, outdoor privies and coal burning fireplaces.
In the case of Connell House, it would be impossible and impractical to completely restore the building to either its original condition, or to a state matching any period during the life and occupancy of Charles Connell. If blueprints ever existed, they are no longer to be found; no worthwhile information exists in Charles’ personal papers, and only two damaged glass plate photographs of the parlor have been located. The Connell furniture has long ago vanished, leaving only a vague description by Dr. George Frederick Clarke of the styles the Connell family used and enjoyed.