I began by removing the walls concealing the chimney, the back entrance cavern, and the strange refrigerator cubby. Here is before the demo began.
Taking down the chimney was absolutely the dirtiest job I have ever done. I had help from my colleague, Dr. Ed Snyder. Because I did not want to have to redo the tile floor, we had to be very careful. I put down pads and blankets to protect the tile, then we basically removed the chimney brick by brick with a 4lb. hammer and pry bar. There was who knows how many years of grimy soot baked in to all the bricks and by the end of the day, both Ed and I were quite a sight. After the chimney was removed below the floor line, I placed a couple pieces of plywood over the hole to avoid late night accidents.
Next: Demo 2, openings in load bearing walls.