Lewiston history museum suffers roof damage

Sep. 4—LEWISTON — Torrential downpours have damaged the Lewiston Museum's roof this summer. Now the Historical Association of Lewiston is looking to make repairs this off-season — as well as find funding for it.

Association President Ken Slaugenhaupt said he was leading a museum tour on July 29, during a heavy downpour, when he first noticed the damage.

"I was in the exhibit hall when I started feeling rain on my head," Slaugenhaupt said, with the association not sure exactly when the damage occurred. "We decided we had to do something."

The museum, set up in the former St. Paul's Episcopal Church, which dates to the 1830s, last had roof work done in 1996.

The Krislyn Company checked it out after the recent issues were discovered and found the peak of the bell tower was hit by a tree branch, with water forming in there for some time and making its way to the ceiling.

The roof also had two holes, with further inspection finding it well worn and an insurance loss. Museum Curator Tom Collister said they need a new underlayment and shingles at least.

Work is expected to start on Sept. 15, weather permitting. The museum's last day of the season was Thursday, with tours not getting in the way of construction.

The total cost estimate for repairing the damage is $52,500.

At its meeting this week, the Lewiston Town Board approved giving the association $15,000, with the rest of the funds planned to come from the village, insurance, fundraising, its own accounts, and possibly grant funding.

Slaugenhaupt said once they open up the roof, they do not know what they will find up there, with costs possibly increasing.