Recent Pioneer Village restoration project difficult

According to Jordan Judson, the primary contractor, it was a difficult task to prevent damage to the fragile historic buildings. “Once the cabins were up in the air, maneuvering between the large trees was extremely difficult too,” says Judson. “We had two inches to spare with the one pictured above but with lots of prior planning we made it work.” Replacement logs had to be carefully prepared to match historically and hand work had to be done very carefully.

Five Pioneer Village cabins have been moved into a village cluster instead of extending out all over the museum. They each will have new concrete foundations, and log, roof and structural repairs as needed. The reorganization frees up space within the museum to complete other displays as we continue with our work of establishing period cells as outlined by the Interpretive Concept Plan. “The exciting work is not only preserving the buildings but extending their lifespan greatly,” says Park Manager, Jim Beauchemin. “It’s also exciting that moving the buildings together establishes a village concept and it’s going to give a whole different feeling i.e. sense of community to the Pioneer Village,” says Beauchemin.

That the buildings are now going to be in a relationship with each other rather than separate artifacts is exemplified by how a barnyard setting will be created around the homesteaders cabin to create a homesteaders scene within the Pioneer Village. Other cabins that have been moved in closer are the Gilchrist Cabin, the Bear Flat Store, the Sawbones (doctor’s) Cabin, and the Redden Cabin.

Judson Construction of Bend, along with housemovers who specialize in moving historic and fragile buildings are doing the work.. Wilson Donahue, has monitored the excavations for the Klamath Tribes. The project started June 4th and is on track to end the first part of August, 2009.