"I am 3/4ths Canadian, and one 4th New Englander - I had ancestors on both sides in the Revolutionary war." - Elizabeth Bishop

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Elizabeth Bishop House Yard Restoration Underway

Right off the top, I want to thank Cory Spencer and Deverne Rushton for their hard and good work with the yard restoration work at the Elizabeth Bishop House. This restoration began earlier this week and is still underway, but wonderful progress has been made.
Cory is the young man who has kept the EB House yard looking so good during the summer, for the past four years. After the flood, he came by to assess things and earlier this week, he tackled restoring the driveway and removing the huge quantity of gravel that had been deposited in the back yard. Part of this gravel came from the parking lot of Layton’s Store (between the antique shops). Part of it came from the shoulder of the road and the head of the driveway, which washed out completely. Cory returned some of the gravel to the parking lot and used the rest to rebuild the driveway and fill in around the foundation. Cory also righted quite a few trees and shrubs which had been lifted out of the ground, many tilted at strange, Bishop-esque angles (EB was fond of things that were tilted off the vertical or horizontal axis).
Deverne is our steadfast and trusted carpenter/handyman, who can do just about everything else. He took on the task of repairing the foundation of the front port and will be re-building the front step. 
I went up today with my sister, Brenda Barry (who is also one of the owners of the house), to check on the progress and take some photographs, so I could update all those interested.

As you can see by the photographs included here (taken by Brenda, the yard is starting to look more like itself, more normal. There is still work for Cory and Deverne to do, and later in October, we will be organizing a little work party to do some additional clean up (especially to remove debris that was also deposited in the yard); but it was so heartening to see such good progress and to know that things are being set to rights after such a serious flood.
One quite curious thing: the patch of roses at the very front of the house, right on the road, had been completely covered by raging water and the shoulder of the road washed out around them, but when the water receded, it was apparent that they seemed to come through just fine. The photo of the rose included here was taken today, their glowing pink contrasting with the brownness all around.
We are relieved and grateful that with some hard work the EB House will be returned to its pleasant state. Thank you, Cory and Deverne for all your support. See the previous two blog post to get a better sense of the progress. In the coming days, the owners of the house will be sending out a crowd-funding appeal for help with this restoration work. Stay tuned for further updates.

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