SUAMICO - An effort to preserve the past in the Village of Suamico is moving forward.
The old barn is part of a farmstead which dates back to the Civil War era.
A fundraiser underway hopes to address structural needs of the barn immediately.
"This would be opened up, cows would put their heads into the stanchion, and then closed," said Jerry Steffen, Howard-Suamico Historical Society Project Committee.
Jerry Steffen say the 143-year-old barn in the Village of Suamico takes take him back to his youth.
"It's just neat to be inside of an old building where there are cracks in the walls, and see the old timbers," said Steffen.
The homestead history dates back to 1856. Robert and Elizabeth Vickery settled on the Suamico site. The family built a barn around 1870.
Suamico recently bought the land to build a new Municipal Center, but village leaders offered the site to the Howard-Suamico Historical Society instead.
"We singled this out with the history of it to be our next project," said Russ Roland, Howard-Suamico Historical Society Advisory Board.
The Village Board and State Historical Society have approved the plan.
Project leaders say the barn's foundation needs to be replaced as soon as possible.
"We were told by an architect from the state of Wisconsin that if it wasn't taken care of in the next few years, that the barn was going to start to lean," said Nancy O'Kelley, Howard-Suamico Historical Society President.
Organizers say they need to raise $25,000 to fix the foundation before winter. Total cost of the renovation would be about $100,000.
The barn is expected to be complete in about a year. Organizers say the barn will be open to the public.
"Along with barn dances, ice cream socials, 4-H groups, scout groups can come out and view what we have restored here," said Roland.
"It would be nice for the future generations to know what the past generations went through to just survive and live," said Steffen.
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