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Helping Hands Needed at North Dakota’s Hutmacher Farmstead
Historic Preservation Blog from PreservationDirectory.com - volunteer vacation, north dakota, stone slab architecture, heritage conservation network, building conservation workshop, hutmacher
Contributed By: Jamie Donahoe
Email The Author: jmdonahoe@heritageconservation.net
Website: http://www.heritageconservation.net

Helping Hands Needed at North Dakota’s Hutmacher Farmstead
Heritage Conservation Network and Preservation North Dakota are looking for volunteers to help restore the Hutmacher Farmstead in Killdeer, North Dakota the week of May 25-31, 2008. The groups have organized a hands-on building conservation workshop at the site in order to make significant headway on the project. Volunteers will focus on repairing the main house of the pioneer complex, which is one of the last (and possibly the best) examples of stone-slab construction in this legendary state. Their hard work will be rewarded with nights spent listening to cowboy poetry and gazing at the stars.

A team of eight or more volunteers joining is critical to the success of the project. The buildings at the Hutmacher Farmstead were highly labor intensive to construct and to maintain; their preservation takes an equal amount of effort. The week’s primary task will be rebuilding the roof of the main house, which involves timber framing and grass thatch covered with a clay mixture. Volunteers will also be doing stone masonry work to stabilize the walls, which will then be tuck-pointed with clay mortar. No experience working with historic buildings is necessary, just an interest in the project and a willingness to learn and experience new things. Volunteers of all ages are welcome; they do not need to be in tip-top physical shape as there is a way for everyone to participate in this prairie project. 

Volunteers will stay in a rustic cabin at the Naard Creek Ranch, located 20 miles northwest of Killdeer and 25 minutes from the work site. They also have the option to camp. The fee for the workshop, which is $340 or $490 depending on your lodging option, covers lunch at the site, project materials, and insurance. The dates include the Memorial Day holiday, making the workshop a great way to extend a long weekend and literally get in touch with history. Complete details and registration information are available from HCN’s website http://www.heritageconservation.net/ws-hutmacher-2008.htm or by contacting Judith Broeker, HCN project director, at +1 303-444-0128.

The goal of the project is to ensure the site’s future preservation by utilizing it as an experiential vacation location. For now, this workshop, a.k.a. volunteer vacation, is sure to be unlike anything else you’ve ever done.


Keywords: volunteer vacation, north dakota, stone slab architecture, heritage conservation network, building conservation workshop, hutmacher

Posted: January 28, 2008
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