August 31, 2015
Mohall? Hmm. Could it be a generous donor who wants to help our project?
Caller: Is this the Stone Bank?
Caller: Do you cash checks?
SB: (Thoughtful pause). Well, we take checks as contributions, but we are not a bank. We are restoring a historic bank building.
Caller: So, you don’t cash checks?
Caller: Do you know where I could cash a check?
Well, of course, I offered a couple of suggestions. We always try to be helpful at the Stone Bank.
We are NOT a bank, but we are restoring Bottineau’s first bank.
Now we need your help to pay our contractors and put the building back together again.
We will take your check (donations only) at Touchstones, Inc., P.O. Box 272, Bottineau, ND 58318.
Any amount will help. It all goes directly to the restoration project to match our grants and pay our contractors.
We need to enclose the back of the building in 2015. Your gift will mean a lot and it is tax deductible.
August 3, 2015
This year’s progress on the Stone Bank project is encouraging, and the restoration work might merit even larger matching grants in the near future, State Historical Society Architectural Historian Lorna Meidinger said today in Bottineau.
“It sure looks different now. You just keep making progress,” Meidinger said today, nearly three years after her last site visit to the Stone Bank project. “Not every (restoration) project keeps going. People get anxious and discouraged.”
Meidinger said she was happy to see that the Stone Bank project is now well into its construction phase, not just destruction any longer. She climbed down onto the basement’s new concrete floor with embedded heating coils and inspected the concrete block walls that will support the stone facade. She agreed it will be crucial to build the rest of the concrete walls and extend the new roof over the back 29 feet of the building before the snow flies this year.
Meidinger also toured the interior of the original 1900 structure and agreed that it would be relatively easy to take down the partition walls and open the space for a bright and airy cafe or meeting rooms. The architectural historian gave her approval to all of the scraping, priming and painting of Stone Bank window frames that a group of 12 visiting Fulbright Scholars did last summer.
“Volunteers aren’t always that careful with their work,” she said.
More help could be on the way from Bismarck, Meidinger said, noting that she and others are pushing for the State Historical Society of North Dakota to raise its $20,000 ceiling for annual matching grants. The Stone Bank project has already garnered two $20,000 grants and one $15,000 grant from the SHSND, but all grants from the state must be matched with donations of money or labor from the community.
Currently, the need for private donations is urgent, because if we can’t afford to finish the block walls and back roof before winter, ice will start to damage the basement walls and flooring already installed this year. So please send your tax-deductible contributions to P.O. Box 272, Bottineau, N.D. 58313 or use the PayPal or Razoo links to the right to put it on your credit card.
August 1, 2015
July 22, 2015
There you go! We have a fresh concrete floor in the Stone Bank’s basement.
This is the room where there were two heating fuel tanks for the building’s old boiler and the floor was dirty, crumbling concrete.
In the lower right of the photo above, the black circular object is the top of our recently installed sewage lift pump. PROGRESS x 2.
Here is the in-floor heating in the part of the building that we took down and are putting back together. A concrete floor will be poured over the heat elements. In-floor heat! Pretty cool update for an old building in a cold climate.
Now, the back 20-feet of the building has nice deep footings to support the weight of a stone-clad structure. When our nonprofit purchased the Stone Bank in 2011, the back section of the building had only a crawl space — and the back wall of the building was sinking, because it was resting on footings that were much too shallow.
When complete, the back of the Stone Bank will look much the same as it did when we started the project, but it will have a much sturdier foundation, a handicap entrance and two handicap-accessible restrooms.
That’s the way you take a building from 1900 into 2015 — and beyond.
Do you want to be part of the Stone Bank project? We always welcome volunteers, but right now, we really need donations to keep the ball — or stone — rolling on enclosing the back of the building.
Your donations will help us match a generous $20,000 grant from the Historical Society of ND. We also accept online gifts with PayPal and Razoo. The links are in the sidebar.
As always, thanks for reading the Stone Bank blog. Please, share this post with your friends and family!
July 21, 2015
We’ve got the right contractor, the best stone mason and a willing plumber.
What we need now is YOU.
Your donation will help us pay our contractors and provide the financial spark we need to reach our goal of enclosing the back 20 feet of the Stone Bank this year.
Can you help? Here’s a newspaper insert we shared last week in our two local papers. If you don’t subscribe, we didn’t want you to feel left out. So here it is.
Send your check today or follow the links on this page to Razoo or PayPal to make an online donations. We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and your gift is tax deductible.
We can’t do it without you.
Thanks for reading the Stone Bank blog!
July 16, 2015
Our Stone Bank contractors have been working hard to finish work in the basement — breaking up and hauling out the old concrete floor and creating a base for a new floor.
After the crew broke up the old concrete, they hauled it into the new section of the basement where the rubble was taken away by backhoe.
Strong backs built the Stone Bank 115 years ago — and we have some strong backs and heavy equipment putting the back of the building together again. We took apart 20 feet of the building to put a foundation under it. (Don’t worry. We saved the stone and will put it up again.) This photo shows the new section of the basment. (Photos courtesy Scott Wagar)
Make no mistake. This was a tough job. We appreciate our contractors and their crews — because they are doing the hard part of making the building whole again.
The result of all that hard work? A nice, smooth surface that will soon be a concrete basement floor. Notice the handsome stone walls in the basement. Built by immigrant craftsmen between July and December 1900.
Check back here soon to see more progress on our restoration project.
Want to be part of the action? We have some volunteer opportunities, but mosly we need donations. We must pay our contractors for all their heavy lifting — and for that we need cash. Any amount is welcome and all donations go directly into the restoration project.
You don’t have to put out your back to do your part to save this historic building. Just pick up a pen and send a check today to Touchstones, Inc., P.O. Box 272, Bottineau, ND 58318. PayPal and Razoo online payment sites are linked in the sidebar.
We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and your gift is tax deductible.
Thanks for reading the Stone Bank blog!
July 11, 2015
OK. Sure. It looks like a muddy hole in the ground.
But we look in that hole and see PROGRESS!
Why? Because, dear friends, that black round object in the photo below is a sewage lift pump that has been installed in the Stone Bank’s new basement.
We had to wait through the winter and a very chilly spring to have the pump installed. It has seals that can’t be exposed to extreme cold. And then, we had to wait our turn for a very busy plumber.
But finally. The lift pump is in and we are moving forward.
Here’s what you’re seeing in the photo above: At rear is the original foundation of the Stone Bank building from 1900. The section of the building that we dismantled was sitting on shallow footings — and from the opening at left, there was only a crawl space under the back of the building. At right, you can see the new foundation wall that extends 20 feet from the back of the building. Deep footings and a proper basement are ready to support the building again. With the plumbing roughed in, the work is progressing on finishing the basement floor in poured concrete.
We must complete this part of the project by the end of July to collect a grant from the Historical Society of North Dakota. We need your help to make this happen.
This is the time to make a donation. Every penny donated will go toward rebuilding the back of this wonderful, historic building on Bottineau’s Main Street.
Make a contribution today. We really need everyone’s support to move this from mud to marvelous!
Send a check to: Touchstones, Inc., P.O. Box 272, Bottineau, ND 58318.
Find our PayPal and Razoo online giving accounts on the side panel of the blog!
Thanks to all of our longtime supporters. If you have been waiting to give. NOW is really a good time.
May 28, 2015
The Stone Bank turns 115 in 2015 — and we are determined to get the back of the building up and the roof on.
Are you with us?
We hope so.
A few extra hands will make short work of this — and you will be able to say: “Yes. I helped rebuild the Stone Bank.”
The next step? Thought you’d never ask.
With the last bit of junk out of the basement, our plumber will be able to rough-in the plumbing.
Then the basement floor will be poured… and then…
Drum roll: Floor joists and a floor!!!!!!!!!
We are meeting at 9 a.m. Saturday, May 30. Wear your work gloves and sensible shoes. No open toes — no matter how fabulous your pedicure is. (We expect to finish by no later than 11 a.m.)
If you can’t join our work crew, you can support the effort to restore this historic building. We need to match a grant with donations from the community. Can you help? Volunteers help with many things, but we do need to pay our contractors.
Hope to see you there on Saturday morning!
And thanks for reading the Stone Bank blog!
December 25, 2014
It’s our friend MaryB in a Stone Bank T!
If you didn’t get a Stone Bank T-shirt under the tree, you can get one on your own.
A little $20 donation will bring you a new long-sleeve verions (quantities limited), or a $15 gift will get you a nice short-sleeve T. Go for it. You will be helping restore the Stone Bank.
Happy Holidays and stop back here for updates on our project. We are predicting a lot of action on the Stone Bank in 2015.
December 18, 2014
Someone asked me today about “that castle in North Dakota,” and I knew exactly what they meant. It’s time to revisit a blog post about the beautiful Coghlan Castle near St. John, ND.
Make a donation to help restore the Stone Bank and I will meet you in ND and take you to see the castle (and, of course, the Stone Bank).
Originally posted on stonebankblog:
$5 million! That’s how much it would take to completely repair and restore the Coghlan Castle near St. John, N.D.
Not going to happen, says Becky Leonard, the spark plug behind saving this striking and rare stone building.
Becky and other Coghlan Castle fans have worked hard to stabilize the building and to make critical repairs to keep it standing. More stone will be reattached to the facade — but, for now, that’s about where the project will stand.
This year’s goal is to install an interpretive sign near the castle, so interested passersby can stop, take a look and go away knowing “what the heck that building is.”
I have misplaced my notes from my lunch with Becky, who has been involved in historic preservation for years. But she is to be complimented for pushing hard to save this building.
She said the the architect hopes to some day…
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