James Matten Early Cabin Roof Replacement Project

Cabin-pic-1James Matten Early Cabin Roof Replacement Project – June 2011

Volunteers for Historic Fincastle, Inc. worked long hours during June to replace the cedar shake roof on the historic James Matten Early Cabin.  The cabin was built in the 1790’s and in 1982 HFI received a $25,000 grant from the Virginia Historic Landmarks Commission to restore the cabin.     It was completed in 1987 with an additional $53,000 contributed by HFI.  To continue to maintain this historic structure, it was vital that the cedar shake roof be replaced. The shingles on the roof had deteriorated over the decades, allowing rain and moisture to cause damage to the historic building

This roof replacement project will cost near $10,000 for shakes, supplies, and skilled labor.  “Raise the Roof”, an art sale and social event, was held last year by HFI as  a fundraiser for the roof project.  The event’s art sales, auctions, and purchase of cedar shakes, as well as generous donations from individuals and corporations, raised the majority of the funds needed.  HFI was able to complete the project due to the large number of volunteer hours from a small group of dedicated volunteers.

HFI volunteers worked weekends to remove the old shingles from the roof, which proved more difficult than expected.  In addition to the volunteer work, professional roofing skills were provided by Jason Lucas and Andrew Brenner to install the new shakes, including roofing felt and underlayment.

Cabin-pic-2The roof replacement committee led by Kip Burton gives heart-felt thanks to the following volunteers: Carol and Alan Brenner, Brian and Marni Jones, Lyn Burton, Kirk Weiner, Ed McCurdy, Ben Showalter, and Scott VanCleef.  In addition, food and beverage were provided by Wendy Jones, scaffoldings and tools from Lucas Construction and Main Street Home Improvement, and a helpful hand to unload shingles from an unknown man at the county dump.  Thanks also to those visitors who stopped by to satisfy their curiosity and provide moral support.

The James Matten Early Cabin is located at the corner of Murray and Water Streets.  Tours of the building and town are available from HFI.  The organization is grateful to all who for this project and other historic preservation projects provide time, energy, and vision to preserve for the future.

Click the link to download the article: Article and thank you for Roof Replacement June 2011


Historic Fincastle getting QR Codes for town visitors

Eric Park, Marni Jones, Alex Kosnett, Chris Piott,and Greg LeMieux at HFI office

Eric Park, Marni Jones, Alex Kosnett, Chris Piott,and Greg LeMieux at HFI office

Fincastle Herald, February 22, 2012:
Historic Fincastle getting QR Codes for town visitors

Historic Fincastle, Inc. (HFI) and a group of Virginia Tech (VT) students are working on a joint project making new technology available to town visitors through an Urban Planning Seminar course. Quick Response (QR) Codes will be developed by the students along with an expanded web site to give visitors immediate access to a tour map with suggested routes. Also, historical information about Fincastle and the historic buildings in town will be accessible.

The student group of four is composed of; Alex Kosnett from Dunn Loring, VA a double major in Environmental Policy & Planning and Biochemistry; Chris Piott from Lynchburg, VA majoring in Environmental Policy & Planning; Eric Park from Richmond, VA majoring in Public & Urban Affairs; and Greg LeMieux from Clinton, IN majoring in Public & Urban Affairs and Geography. These students are supervised by Dr. Diane Zahm in this seminar course. Student groups have the freedom to design a capstone project during their final year at VT. Their choices are based on their interests and identified needs in urban planning. The students design the project, develop benchmark deadlines, and assign tasks and duties among the group.

Plans for the project include a Google map of the Town of Fincastle with markers for areas of interest. Visitors to town could access the information via the internet or by use of smart phone technology by scanning a QR Code. The codes will be strategically located in town for convenience to visitors. An audio component is also being explored for buildings built prior to 1800. HFI officers, Carol Brenner and Marni Jones, have met with the students and are very excited about their energy and technology knowledge. More information about this project will be available in the next few weeks.

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