Welcome to the site of
" Piecesurpiece.com "
My piecesurpiece.com site, contains various files, which elaborate on several pages of information. I pass on as best as I can my knowledge I've accumulated since 1975, for the profit of those who are interested in the conservation and restoration of our beautiful heritage built here in Quebec.
As you will notice, this site deals mainly with the recovery and restoration of diverse Quebec ancestral buildings and patrimonial homes.
I put a lot of energy and time for the elaboration of this site. This work is not in vain. I receive numerous emails of congratulations and encouragements, and I thank you for it. It makes it all worthwhile.
If, by the consultation of my site, you find relevant materials there to educate you and to help you in the elaboration of one of your dreams or projects, the purpose of the site will be reached.
For information on the restoration or the acquisition of a defused ancestral home, you can contact me by email at the following address:
You can also reach me at:
(819) 233 - 2280, 19475 Chemin Forest, Bécancour QC.
(zip code) g9h 1r1
Enjoy navigating in the small world of my passion.
There is a lot content to be read and seen.
I appear, Michel Martel
Photo : Yvette Boulanger, Charlesbourg, 2009
Along with others, I am a passionate specialist in the recovery of wooden ancestral homes, built in "pièce sur pièce" (piece by piece / log cabin) and resulting from the 18th and 19th century. Since 1975, I have taken down, relocated & rebuilt many of these heritage homes and buildings. In doing so, I've acquired an expertise "outside the ordinary" in this domain. My professional approach in front of this kind of work leans on two sources of information and inspirations.
Firstly, thanks to the reading of several works written by historians on the traditional architecture and restoration of patrimonial homes in Quebec.
Secondly, by instinct and by personal experience acquired during my life while participating in the recovery or restoration of heritage homes, followed by starting up my own company which also involves consulting. The recovery of these homes is largely made by process of manual dismantling, helped in certain stages of the project by machinery.
I save homes which are intended to be removed from their site of origin for diverse reasons. They can be destroyed because the owners consider them too dilapidated to be renewed or restored, or because of the wish to rebuild a new construction of quite different style in this same location. They can be also called to disappear from their site because of expropriation due to future developments. The owner of the property often begins to try to find a new buyer who will have to relocate the house by use of a firm specialized in the transportation & relocation of dwellings and structures. This attempt of saving the structure often turns out fruitless, due to the very high cost of such logistics. Further to the failure of this attempt, the house finds itself often in front of the final alternative of demolition workers, which is the demolition and total loss of the building.
It is at this stage that I intervene … Just before the total loss. When I examine and decide to acquire a heritage home, I sell it completely taken apart piece by piece using a numbering system, and then load it onto flatdeck trailers. The delivery of this immense " puzzle" can be afterward made more easily and it's heritage remains authentic no matter where relocated within the province.
You have to be a little crazy or totally "hooked on these homes to do what I do …
Alain Choquette, with his caustic humor, dared to call me:
" The man who planted houses... "
I offer my services for...
Works of carpentry joinery, on former stone or wooden homes, 17,18 and 19th century.
- "piece by piece" defused as well down to its skeleton.
- Repairs or diverse transformations on the basic structure of the house.
- Reconstruction of secondary, slatted dependencies or in "piece by piece" , with former stamp and traditional techniques, from beams and former materials recuperated on other old buildings.
- Works specialized in internal or outside traditional joinery : installation and/or repairs of pine beam flooring, reconstruction or restoration of traditional wooden walls, manufacturing of miller's staircases, manual wood planing, the works of wooden outer covers, cedar shingles, diverse finishes...
Many other specialized works in the restoration, modifications and reconstruction of homes or patrimonial buildings.
I put my expertise in the service of former buildings only.
Structural examination of stone or wooden houses.
Shaping of the stages necessary to follow, for the realization of a construction site of works of restoration, and discount in value of the former stamps of the building.
I am often asked for historic or technical evaluations in the case of purchase or sale of property, or as a consultant during projects of restoration or in disaster situations.
For more information, consult the Faculty Menu / general / article: inspections and expertise, (Inspections et expertises sur maisons ancestrales)
I am a supplier...
Of former materials intended for the purist restoration of ancestral homes. I am especially a supplier of complete ancestral homes ibuilt "piece by piece", defused and intended for relocation and restoration in its most purist or popular form.
19475 Forest, Bécancour, g9h 1r1 819-233-2280 (specialized entrepreneur, allow RBQ: 8304-7407-58)
To view the progress of our patrimonial family house, visit in the menu Houses-archives / the family house Martel-Béliveau / (MAISON Martel Béliveau).
The piecesurpiece.com site, is constantly evolving...
It is the shape of virtual "trade guilds", that I offer to all those who want to learn on the former carpentry-joinery of our ancestors. I humbly add with the site, my small grain of sand, to the knowledge already published by historians and researchers much smarter than I.
About the survival of the site...
The site " piecesurpiece.com ", is an open sky of insider information. It is a " bank " of theoretical, technical and historic information, for those who are sensitive to the Quebecer-built traditional heritage.
It is personal and on human principle which I am anxious to pass onto everybody this knowledge. They result from my job experiences (since 1975), and of those of friends and craftsmen as fascinated as me, whom I cross in life and on my construction sites. For those who know me and have followed the evolution of my site for a long time, you can notice that " piècesurpièce.com ", since its creation in 2004, has become more & more voluminous in information over the years.
And it is not finished! The quantity of additional information which I plan to enter on the site in the following years are going to make it encyclopaedic.
The site is being visited by more and more people, and expenses to create it, schedule it, maintain it and accommodate it to the Internet, being directly proportional in its "stoutness" which does not stop inflating, an introduction of compensatory funds became necessary.To manage to keep the site ACTIVE on the Internet, with its first vocation of popular transmission, a small 1 year five dollar membership (5$) fee is now required to consult the entity of the most important and elaborate 2 technical sections of the site, that is the menus "Houses-archives" and "Faq".
( On a $5.00 subscription,
---45 hundred are deducted as fresh by Paypal,
---68 hundred are deducted by the government for taxes.
---3.87 $ house for the survival of the site) The payment of the subscription, is made on the Internet via PayPal.
If you use a credit card to pay the subscription, PayPal is going to remove on your card a six-dollar amount (6 $). The additional dollar is a Paypal charge for the use of a credit card.
If you do not want to use PayPal on the Internet, you can send me a cheque by mail or by email transfer. In the reception of the amount, I shall communicate with you to tell you how to subscribe and enter this part of my site.
Please be advised that this more traditional way of payment will not give you immediate access as Internet users choosing PayPal. It will take more time to join and settle the parameters for the subscription. This very low cost of membership will allow everybody to have access to this insider information.
Unfortunately, I can no longer continue my principle of free access for all content of the site as I have the past 8 years.
Too many hours of programming and extra expenses threaten the site's permanent closure.
The people who wish to help me with more than a simple $5 subscription, can always donate at their convenience by clicking on the "Gift" button at the bottom of each page of the site.
It is always very welcomed & appreciated because of all the energy I put in keeping this site alive and evolutionary, as well as answering numerous emails and phone calls. Bottom line, this requires a great deal of labour. Yes, you need to believe in it! And be crazily fascinated with these old homes of our ancestors.
That is me!
All the people who donated to the site since 2004, will get free access to the entire content of the site.
Please contact me by e-mail.
Thank you for your support and for your presence, Michel Martel
The piecesurpiece.com site is enormous, and as I mentioned to you above, it is almost encyclopaedic. It is impossible at the moment to have an English-speaking translation of all the texts which accompany and describe the photos of the diverse files.
On the other hand, you can look at the photos and imagine what comments I may be making under these photos.
For those who want to investigate my site a little further, here is the description of the site menus.
At the top of every page, you have a menu of 7 tabs.
- 1- ACCUEIL = Welcome = the site's introduction page
- 2- MAISONS-VENTE = Homes for sale = compiles several files of homes for sale. These homes are defused, stored and ready for delivery for clients and potential buyers. These are also ancestral properties sold with the land. These announcements of properties with land result from private individuals who rent a shop window on my site, in order to expose their property to sell. This section of the site is free.
- 3- MAISONS-ARCHIVES = Homes-archives = This tab takes you towards the most important first section of the site. In this tab, you have a multitude of files of homes, which were defused and rebuilt. Certain files carry a great deal of information and are segmented. Normally, the first segment of every file show you the stages of recovery of the house, until the final dismantling of its structure, as well as the loading of these materials onto tractor-trailers for delivery.
Following the segment of dismantling, the stages of reassembly are shown. The stages of reassembly do not appear on all files. The files possessing several segments normally show reassemblies.
I invite you to view thousands of photos which illustrate the files of the "Houses-Archives" menu. Even without understanding the texts if you are not fluent in French, you will be impressed to see the work involved in these recovery/restoration projects.
Unfortunately, you must be subscribed to see the content of this important section of the site.
- 4- MATÉRIAUX = Materials = This section of the site is free and you can find various announcements there of former and antique materials to be sold.
- 5- FAQ = FAQ = Here is the most important second section of the site. This "FAQ" (Frequently Asked Questions) section of the site gives you an abundance of information and answers on diverse popular questions, which have a direct report with the restorative techniques of ancestral homes.
All this information results from email exchanges (since 1999), which are performed regularly with people who write with their questions.
You will also find in this "FAQ" section, addresses, phone numbers and internet links of companies, bodies, craftsmen and professionals
who work in domains related to the specialization & restoration of ancestral homes.
The files of "Questions-Answers" of my FAQs, become more and more numerous from month to month.
Consult the "UPDATES" tab on the homepage to inform yourself on the evolution of this section of the site.
GÉNÉRAL = Category: General Questioning =
This "GENERAL" category of FAQ does not necessarily reflect the physical work on a construction site of recovery, construction or patrimonial restoration of a building.
It is the category which gives information among others on:
Observations, historic and architectural characteristics of the former buildings
Information on bodies which laud the conservation of the built heritage
Information on the human and financial efforts that requires construction sites as:
- A future purchase of an existing patrimonial home
- A project of reconstruction of a recovered patrimonial home
- A project of restoration of an existing patrimonial home
And several other general informal questions
TRAVAUX INTÉRIEURS = Category: Interior Works =
The " INTERNAL WORKS " category of FAQ, directly aims at construction work or patrimonial restoration of the INSIDE of a building.
The " EXTERIOR WORKS " category of FAQ, directly aims at the construction work or patrimonial restoration of the OUTSIDE of a building.
Unfortunately, you must be subscibed to see the content of this important section of the site.
- 6- ABONNEMENT = Subscription = It is in this tab that you create your subscription to the site, by registering your user name and your password.
- 7- And finally, CONNEXION =the connection tab = This tab allows you to connect to the site as a member and also have access to all the information contained in Houses-Archives and FAQ.
- 1- The first window (from left) : Inspections et expertises sur maisons ancestrales = Inspection and Expertise on Ancestral Homes = My conditionsand requirements on performing home inspections.
- 2- The second window: Qui est en ligne ? = Who is Online? = description of the number of Internet users (guests & members) who are investigating the site at the time of your presence.
- 3- The middle window presents miniature photos.
- 4- The fourth window: Votre appui-aide à conserver le site en ligne = your support & help to preserve the online site = by placing urgency on the button " To Donate ", you have the possibility of donating via Paypal. No matter the amount, this helps in the survival of the site on the Web.
- 5- And last window on the far right: Références de livres à consulter = Book Reference to be Consulted = brings you towards an exhaustive description of books to be consulted.
And here is ...
In the pleasure of helping and amusing you …