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Historic preservation of the Harman Homestead

A restoration and preservation project is going on at one of Pagosa Springs best known attractions, The Fred Harman Red Ryder Museum, where the first homestead of the artist Fred Harman, built in 1878, is being restored to its original configuration.

Thanks to the volunteer labor of Dusty Pierce, Byron Tashby and Dow Oellien, the rooms added in the late 1940s around two sides have been demolished and the small log cabin is visible once again.

Also uncovered was a wall covered with old newspapers used as insulation — including The Pagosa Herald and The Denver Post — dating from 1879. The newspapers have been removed and are stored at the museum. Usable wood from the cabin has been stacked and retained for future use.

Additional thanks go to the La Plata Electric Assoc. for its generous grant to help with the rebuilding of the roof.

Pierce says competion of the restoration will cost an additional $10,000 as the existing roof must be removed and rebuilt to the original roof design, plus the broken windows must be repaired.

Would you like to join in to help restore part of Pagosa’s heritage and save it for the enjoyment for future generations? If so, contact the Fred Harman Museum which is a 501 (c)(3) corporation by stopping by the museum any weekday between 10:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. with your donation or mail a check to the Fred Harman Museum, at P. O. Box 192, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.

Large donors will have a plaque attached to the homestead listing their business or organization.

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