|After exploratory demo|
Since we moved in, the whole stairwell didn't seem right to me. The ceiling, in addition to the horrible tiles, seemed low. At one point, the whole upstairs had obviously been boarded off from the rest of the house to reduce heating costs. And I had already removed an ugly makeshift doorway from the top of the stairs. But, I thought maybe the sloped ceiling meant there would be stairs to the attic hidden in the wall.
Well, there are no attic stairs hidden in the wall. Instead, under the makeshift ceiling is a beautiful full ceiling. The kind you could hang a chandelier from. The kind that you could hang an over-sized oil portrait in. Gorgeous. It's a little hard to envision with the framing still in place, but I'll post a picture once I get it out.
I'm trying to determine approximately when the false ceiling was installed. The concealed portion has just one layer of wallpaper on it, where the walls below have 4-5. Does anyone know when this type of ceiling tile came into fashion? They're the kind made out of cardboard that fit together with a tongue and groove mechanism.