Who to call when you need your building “hand-demolished”? To the general public, “Amish” often equates to handcrafted – meaning hand-milked cows, handmade quilts, hand-built furniture, and the like (whether that perception is always accurate is another question).
And in that spirit, one Tennessee city found that an Amish hands-on approach was exactly what they needed to remove a historic structure. The Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle reports that an Amish crew of workers has been deconstructing the city’s 140-year-old Hodgson/Dabbs building, brick-by-brick.
Apparently the Amish crew were the only ones willing to do it by hand in such a meticulous fashion. It couldn’t be knocked down by bulldozer or wrecking ball, since it’s too close to other buildings.
It’s not clear why the building is being removed. The man who purchased the property says that they will recycle what they can, and that the bricks will be used in another project.
It sounds like this building is probably being removed for new development. You would think a building of such age would be under some sort of historical protection. I always hate to see fine old buildings go, but it happens. Maybe it was in poor shape.
I was hoping to find a video in the inverse spirit of this 2014 time-lapse barn-raising video, showing the building coming down. The best for now are these still shots by photographer Henry Taylor for the Leaf-Chronicle.
Maybe we’ll see something like that emerge later, as this has been going on since last week, and it looks like there is still a ways to go based on this follow-up story from yesterday. As that time they had taken down the roof, and gotten through half of the second floor:
The clan these Amish belong to is unidentified. While Tennessee now has about a dozen Amish settlements, there are none in this county, nor in any of the surrounding counties. One possibility is the Guthrie, Kentucky community, lying just 15 miles from downtown Clarksville.