About our Team

Meet our Team of Professional Researchers


Melanie Beal Marks, Founder and Principal Researcher of CT House Histories, LLC, has consulted on a wide range of genealogical and historic preservation projects throughout Connecticut, New York, and New England. She is an ardent advocate for threatened and abandoned properties and worked tirelessly to save the Sturges Cottage, a circa 1840 Gothic Revival Gardeners Cottage in Fairfield, Connecticut.  Melanie brings fresh insight and a high level of research detail to her projects. Her areas of expertise include historical and genealogical research, National and State Register listing documentation, and research on historical homes and property. Melanie is a consultant and lecturer for leading preservation organizations in Connecticut including The Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, Fairfield Museum, and History Center and the Connecticut Gravestone Network. She has conducted workshops and lectures on gravestone preservation, restoration, and art interpretation throughout Connecticut and Ohio.  Melanie is an advocate for the preservation and protection of many of Connecticut’s abandoned burying grounds.  Her passion and interest in Connecticut’s historic burying grounds has led to many restoration and preservation initiatives in the Greenfield Hill Burying Ground, the Old Burying Ground and the Wakeman Cemetery, all in Fairfield, CT.  She is a three-year member of the Easton Cemetery Committee where she has helped in the restoration work of the Gilbertown and Center Street Cemeteries. Melanie also serves on the Advisory Board of the Historical Society of Easton and is a Board member of the Greenfield Hill Village Improvement Society. She is a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, Connecticut Historical Society, Eunice Dennie Burr Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, (Fairfield, CT), Connecticut Ancestry Society, and The Dutchess County Historical Society (NY) as well as numerous historical and genealogical societies throughout Connecticut and New York.

139Melissa Beal Beyerlein, Research Consultant, has been doing historic and genealogical research for over 35 years in the Midwest, Maryland, New York, New England, and Nova Scotia.  Melissa is the Owner of OH House Histories, LLC.  In Ohio, Melissa conducts historic and genealogical research to determine the origins and descent of families, including the identification of individuals, their family relationships, the biographical details of their lives, and the properties on which they lived.  Having worked as a paralegal for over 20 years, Melissa is proficient in researching public records and legal documents.  Melissa is a member of the Ohio Genealogical Society, and numerous county and local historical and genealogical societies in Ohio and New York.  Melissa also enjoys researching the colonial and military life of American Revolutionary War patriots as a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution.  Melanie and Melissa have worked together on numerous historic and genealogical projects for many years, most recently developing the life story of their Quaker ancestor and DAR Patriot, Preserved Fish Dakin of New York.

Patricia A. Hines, a writer and researcher, caught the genealogy bug four years ago when she started delving into her family history on a whim. Starting with her immediate family of five, her tree has grown to include more than 600 people (some as far back as the 18th century Italy) – and still growing. She spent nearly 30 years in the newspaper business, 25 of them as the editor of a weekly newspaper in Fairfield, Connecticut. Her experience as a newspaperwoman, both as a reporter and editor, honed her research and writing skills, and provided the foundation for her journey into genealogy. The maternal side of her family is a member of the American Immigrant Wall of Honor of the Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc. She is a member of the National Genealogical Society.

LisaimageLisa Burghardt, Restoration Consultant specializes in the restoration of historic cemeteries and monuments and forensic genealogical research in the New England area.  Lisa’s  research and writing expertise has led to funding streams for restoring ancient burying grounds and historic buildings in Easton, developing blighted properties in Bridgeport and funding for various not-for-profit organizations.  Lisa formerly served for many years as the President of the Historical Society of Easton and also the Vice Chair of the Easton Cemetery Committee    She is professionally affiliated with Artista Studios, a restoration company specializing in the conservation, sales and restoration of religious artwork, sculptures, monuments and mausoleums in the New England area.

PhilesserPhillip Seven Esser,  Architectural Historian specializing in historic preservation has spent over a decade documenting and evaluating historic buildings, structures, neighborhoods, and sites for state and National Register of Historic Places individual and historic district designation. Qualified as a historian and architectural historian under the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualification Standards (as defined in 36 CFR Part 61), he conducts intensive surveys and prepares documentation for State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) review. Phil is on the board of Preservation Action, a national preservation advocacy group and serves as California coordinator, pursuing national legislators to fund activities that promote the economic and cultural benefits of preservation. He remains on the board of the Ridgefield Historical Society in his hometown where he continues to engage in historic preservation advocacy.

Morley C. Boyd  BA, MS, MBA, MBoyd@PreserveWestport.Com
With family roots in Connecticut that date to the early 18th century, Morley has long been a vocal advocate for the preservation of the state’s historic heritage.
Specializing in historic preservation and architectural history, Morley regularly collaborates with state, municipal and private preservation groups throughout Connecticut to conserve threatened historic sites, structures, landscapes and viewsheds. Working with CT House Histories, LLC founder, Melanie Marks since 2010, Morley has authored numerous study reports involving early American structures, burying grounds and other non-renewable cultural resources.
In addition, Morley often appears before area groups to lecture on preservation matters – including the Connecticut Gravestone Network, the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, the Westport Historical Society and the Southport Conservancy. In 2010, Morley co-curated “Westport Modern, When Cool Was Hot”, a photographic exploration of previously undocumented yet significant modern residences in Westport and Weston. The exhibit, hosted by the Westport Historical Society and featuring the photography of talented preservation architect Michael Glynn, was well reviewed by leading modern architecture writers, received considerable media attention and was held over owing to strong public interest.
Morley’s other volunteer efforts include positions on various committees in his hometown of Westport – including the Westport Historic District Commission, the West Parish Meeting House Committee and presently, the Kemper- Gunn Advisory Group and the Saugatuck River Swing Bridge Study Subcommittee. In 2005, after being appointed Chair of the First Selectman’s Emily McLaury House Committee – a team charged with  restoring a historic town-owned residence for workforce housing – Morley wrote the $250,000 plan of preservation, successfully obtained the appropriation and managed the project  to completion. The McLaury project, which came in under budget, received a coveted Community Preservation Award from the Connecticut Trust in 2008.
To date, Morley has helped to establish four Local Historic Districts, four Local Historic Landmark Properties and a State Archeological Preserve – all in Westport. While serving as Chair of the Westport Historic District Commission from 2006 to 2008, he was also instrumental in persuading Westport’s legislative body to strengthen its demolition delay ordinance for historically significant buildings from the standard 90 days to the statutory  maximum of 180 days – a first in the State of Connecticut.
Additionally, to encourage the retention and repurposing of historic buildings in Westport, Morley helped draft a new zoning incentive (Sec. 32-18) which provides  greater flexibility to the owners of residential historic structures. Recently, one of Westport’s oldest buildings, the c.1710 Green House, was saved from destruction with the aid of this powerful preservation tool.
Michael Jennings Glynn, AIA, NCARB, Michael Glynn Architects, Architecture Consultant specializing in preservation, conservation and adaptive re-use of historic properties.  Glynn believes that the most effective design is enriched by an intimate knowledge of architectural history and traditional craftsmanship.  Context – both the natural and the man-made – are critical issues for Glynn. He recently observed that, “inspiration comes from observation and appreciation of context”. Glynn has worked on a diverse variety of projects, both large and small, while working for firms in Boston; Washington, D.C.; Princeton, New Jersey; and New York City.He founded his own practice in 1991, specializing in historic buildings, preservation planning and residential projects of wide-ranging scale and complexity.  He has also designed and executed many landscape and garden commissions; he considers landscape an integral component of his residential projects.  Many of his projects have won awards and professional recognition.  He is a registered Architect in New York State, New Jersey, and Connecticut.A sampling of Michael Glynn’s projects:Michael Glynn was project architect and construction manager for the renovation and adaptive re-use of the Heurich Mansion (Historical Society of Washington D. C. Headquarters); for which he received an American Institute of Architects award for “design sensitivity and craftsmanship”.  He was project architect for the restorationof Franklin Roosevelt’s house, “Springwood”, in Hyde Park, New York, in 1982 after it was severely damaged by fire.  While he was with the Office of Thierry Despont, in New York, he developed a master plan for the conversion of Henry Clay Frick’s Pittsburgh mansion into a museum. After starting his own practice, he was consulting architect for the restoration of the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ War Memorial and Auditorium, part of the capitol complex in Trenton, New Jersey; he developed master plans for both the Simsbury Historical Society, of Simsbury, Connecticut, and the Greenwich Historical Society, of Greenwich, Connecticut; the Ronemus residence, in Westport, Connecticut, received several awards, including a merit award from the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation.  Recently he has prepared a historic structure report (in collaboration with CT House Histories and Building Conservation Associates) for the Stanton House Museum, in Clinton, Connecticut.Over the past decade, Mr. Glynn has been very active in the movement to preserve mid-century modern houses; he is currently working as consulting architect for the renovation of the Clark House, in Orange, Connecticut, designed by Marcel Breuer in 1948.

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