Historic Schoolhouse to Get New Life

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(photo courtesy Indiana Landmarks/West Lafayette Parks and Recreation Department) (photo courtesy Indiana Landmarks/West Lafayette Parks and Recreation Department)

A 19th century schoolhouse in West Lafayette will avoid demolition and head to a new home this spring. Indiana Landmarks says the Morris Schoolhouse, which was built in 1879 and has been vacant since 1916, will move to a nearby parcel of land where it will be restored and serve as the centerpiece for a new park.

Last month, the city contracted North Manchester-based Wolfe House & Building Movers to move the building about 900 feet to its new location. The 13.6 acres of land on which the schoolhouse will sit was donated by Lynn Cason, whose family owned the property where the structure was built.

Indiana Landmarks says, once renovations are complete, the schoolhouse could be used for educational programs and event space, though a specific use is yet to be determined. The park that will be developed around the schoolhouse will be connected to the city's trail system.

Cason sold the land on which the schoolhouse currently sits, at U.S. 231 and Cumberland Avenue, to Franciscan Health in 2014. The relocation, which is expected to cost nearly $50,000 will take place this spring.

The project is being funded by the city and through public donations. Franciscan is covering the cost of project management during the move, according to Indiana Landmarks. 

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