The Log Cabin Project

The Henderson Historical Society in 2001 was given it's largest gift ever literally. Eileen DeLaVergne Pretre of Thomaston, Conn., gave the society the home she grew up in on Rays Bay Road in the town of Henderson. The home had been damaged by fire in the summer of 2000, but the fire was mostly contained to the kitchen, and the older, main part of the house - a log cabin dating back to the 1820s - was saved. It is that cabin, built with squared logs and measuring 18 feet by 24 feet, that was given to the society. With the help of a $1,200 grant from the New York State Council on the Arts, the society hired an architect from the Syracuse firm of Crawford & Stearns to examine the structure in the spring of 2002 and assess its history, condition, and the feasibility of the society's plan to disassemble it and reassemble it next to the society's museum on County Route 72. The architect produced a favorable report, so the building was labeled and disassembled in the summer of 2002 by Richard LaCrosse of Parish, N.Y. Mr LaCrosse, an historic site preserver at Fort Ontario in Oswego, lives in a restored log cabin and has participated in several other log cabin reconstructions. His services were paid for with the help of a $5,000 grant from the Northern New York Community Foundation of Watertown. The society is now raising money, with a goal of $45,000, so Mr. LaCrosse can reassemble the cabin in the summer of 2004 on the lot next to the museum. The finished cabin would be dedicated to Ellen Fitzgerald DeLaVergne, mother of Eileen Pretre. All donations of $100 and above toward the reconstruction of the cabin will be noted on a plaque in the completed cabin.

The Cabin Project

The following photos depict the disassembling and reassembling of the log cabin.


Uncovering the cabin after years of being hidden by more modern siding.


Tearing the old building down to expose the cabin.         Tagging each log so it can be assembled back to the same position.


Preparing the site to receive the cabin.                               Bringing the stored, numbered pieces to the site.


Unloading the numbered pieces                                                     Beginning the reassembly


Starting to take shape

One of the mystery carvings of ships found on the logs.

The cabin in winter