The season is about to officially begin and we are so excited for all the restoration projects we have this year! HistoriCorps volunteers will be restoring some fascinating buildings this summer, including Missouri’s Neosho School, where George Washington Carver began his education; Simpson Lake Cabins in Wyoming, buildings that were once directly connected to the dude ranch that still exists there; and Black River Harbor Pavilion in Michigan, located right along the shores of Lake Michigan. These are all new spots for us this year (and still open if you’re interested in volunteering!) but we will also be returning to a number of sites to continue restoration and stabilization work. Read on to learn more:
This is the second year HistoriCorps will be working at Wild Plum Guard Station in California. Last year, in August 2015, volunteers worked on the site’s cookhouse by replacing broken windows, repainting doors and rehabilitating the front porch. This May 31-June 19, volunteers will focus on three outbuildings: a bunkhouse, garage and barn.
At the barn, we’ll work on windows and doors, replace siding and then repaint the entire exterior. The bunkhouse also needs window and door work, as well as painting both inside and out. For the more adventurous, we’ll also be doing roofing work on the garage.
This historic Greer Roller Mill, built in 1899 in Missouri, is located within the Mark Twain National Forest. The mill utilized an ingenious system of pulleys and cables and was in use for over 20 years. In 2014, HistoriCorps and Passport in Time volunteers were called in to stabilize the west elevation and to repair some windows and stairs. Last year, volunteers worked on wall stabilization, framing and siding replacement.
But there’s still more to do to keep the mill in tip-top shape! From May 31-June 12, HistoriCorps and Passport in Time volunteers will again head to the mill, this time to repair deteriorated timber framing in the southeast corner of the the 1st and 3rd floors of the mill, and also to rebuild the loading bay roof and deck to match its original appearance, depth and width.
The Ute-Ulay Mining Complex, located in Colorado, has been listed on Colorado Preservation Inc.’s (CPI) Endangered Places list since 2015. Built in 1874 and 1903, respectively, the Ute and Ulay mines produced over $12 million worth of lead and silver, worth over $280 million in today’s dollars. The site consists of 18 structures including residential cabins, a blacksmith shop, a boarding house, a red-cedar water tank, and assayer’s office, all of which have fallen into disrepair after neglect and due to adverse weather conditions. Last year, volunteers stabilized some of the structures through foundation work, siding, and roofing.
This year, we’ll have two sessions, one Endangered Places Weekend Workshop from June 3-5, and a full HistoriCorps work week from June 7-12. Work that will be covered in both sessions will focus on the Long Building and the Winch House Lean-to. We’ll be installing some temporary bracing and new collar ties for the Long Building while stabilizing the Lean-to’s foundation and also working on siding and the roof.
You may have heard about Buffalo Peaks Ranch since it’s been in the news a few times, covered by the Today Show as well as NBC Nightly News in 2015, and most recently in The New York Times on May 1, 2016 in an article written by volunteer Allison Amend for the travel section. The ranch, which is being transformed into the Rocky Mountain Land Library, is in need of a few updates, and HistoriCorps teams started work there in 2015. Last year’s work was focused on replacing the roofs on some of the buildings, while this July’s project will entail siding, windows and doors of the Cooks House.
There are still plenty of spots remaining to help work on Buffalo Peaks, so come see what everyone is talking about! There are two sessions for this project, and we’ll be working there from July 19-31.
If you haven’t been to Hahn’s Peak and you’re looking for an adventure this summer, then block off September 4-9 to join us for our third season here. The Hahn’s Peak Fire Lookout Tower was built in 1912 on top of Colorado’s Hahn’s Peak at a whopping 10,759 feet. You can just imagine the incredible views you’ll see as you work on top of the tower. The project requires some stamina to make the 2-hour round trip hike up to the site every morning and evening. The fire tower is also on CPI’s Endangered Places list.
Work began here in 2013 with some stabilization of the structure, and volunteers returned in 2015 to stabilize and rehabilitate the base, cab, stairs and railings. This year, we’ll fix up the floor and ceiling, windows and doors, catwalk roofing, and exterior finishing. There is already a waiting list for this exciting project so contact us today to put your name down!