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RESTORATION UPDATE

Posted by on August 25, 2016

8359aHi folks. I know an update has been a long time coming, and I apologize for keeping you waiting for so long. A lot of things have been going on around here and a lot of it is not worth discussing. But you should rest assured that the disassembly work and the foundation work has all been moving along at a quicker pace than we expected. I would say that in another week, you will see the new “old” store begin to emerge. Again, keep in mind that this is not your ‘normal structure construction’ that everyone is so used to. We are doing things exactly as there were done in 1831. We just have better and more efficient tools and help-aids.

This summer has been a grueling, miserable, hot (as you know) time to be disassembling old houses and buildings. Ed, Eddie and Dustin have been determined to get this project completed and ready for the construction phase. They are so dedicated, focused, and passionate about the roles they are performing. When this project is completed, it will have been an unprecedented undertaking in the world of Historic Preservation.

They have already successfully prepared the store foundation and sill logs to assist the “phoenix out of the ashes!”In about one more week, the materials will all have been gathered and mostly de-nailed and stored away. You can now expect to see things happen, just like you have been anticipating for the past six months (believe it or not!) Good things take a little time!

The replacement footers and piers, posts, and sill logs are all in place, ready for the main building to commence. A very significant surprise and gift was donated to the community by one of our neighbors. Dale Bardes arranged for all the necessary sills logs to be custom sawed from a mill down in Kentucky (I believe) and trucked up here to the site. This was a major gift and boost for the project. And they are all in place. Whenever you see Dale, be sure to offer him your thanks and appreciation. Rabbit Hash people are just amazing!

The old Florence, Indiana bank and Masonic lodge building has been a godsend for us. But it has also been a living hell! Six to eight inches of 100 year-old pigeon dung graced us in the attic and made demolition that much more difficult and uncomfortable. But, under the shit was the Shinola! This building is providing us with the much needed 25 foot long 2 by 12s needed to complete our foundation and walls.

Amazingly, even the roof sheeting was brand new mill-sawn red oak one-by boards. I have never seen brand new lumber used as roof sheeting before. It is always second or third hand recycled barn lumber or scrap flooring. So, the store’s sub floor promises to be a very tight and sturdy base to apply the old and the recycled tongue and groove pine flooring that we all are so used to seeing.

Stay tuned. Now that we will be back in town, I will be able to have more time for updates and photographs. Now you can take a seat by the beautiful Ohio River and watch the progress go backwards!

Donald E. Clare

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