Forgot to mention, when we asked the electrician what he would do if it was his house, he said he would probably leave it as it is, since the house has such unique historical details and it would be difficult to preserve them with re-wiring. He also said "who am I to say the house isn't safe, when it hasn't burned down after 125 years and several large earthquakes?" It's sort of a famous house in this area, but is not on a national historical register (as far as I'm aware)...