Views of
EVANSBURG STATE HISTORICAL PARK of Pennsylvania,
established in the late 1960's, covering 3,349 acres.

Hand-dug mill race of the very early 1700's, said to have been a saw & grist mill, operated by settler Henry Pennebacker's sons from 1752 to 1795. It was later of Markley, and the Cassel families, as indicated on maps of the 1800's. The mill existed up to the early 1900's.


Photo of the Keyser Mill, in 2008, near the eight-arch, stone bridge of Germantown Pike, Evansburg, Pa. An historic structure that has been protected.

Conserving heritage sites here that are up to 300 years old isn't of any concern. Irreplaceable structures like these have been torn down all across the county and southeast Pa.; so many lost during the first decade of 2000. They continue to demolish houses in the Park, which had been otherwise rented and occuppied. Five of these houses (built about the 1950's) were demolished from 2011 to 2014. Others are pictured below. It would help if the management and Harrisburg had more appreciation for their own American heritage, and stop intentionally destroying it. The situation might be better if a large non-profit, and politicians would stand up and notice the great loss that has taken place in this Park. Maybe a consideration is a public-private effort, with oversight from the Museum Commission. So much heritage has been lost, knowingly. Concerned Americans everywhere can help to voice their opinion to the Governor's office.


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The Park's "Lesher house" which is the farm of an early Cassel family. Farm structures appear to be from approximately the mid to late 1700's, and 1800's. The original bank barn was demolished. An early springhouse, and a wagon shed are falling into disrepair. (said to have been built by Isaac Cassel in 1771)

"Lesher house" photos from 2003: the barn, spring house, wagon shed

Remaining barn foundation


The early spring house


Wagon shed


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"Lesher house" photos from 2014: Wagon shed, Spring house

The hole that has been growing in the roof of the wagon shed


An interior wall of the spring house, weakening


The buckling of an exterior wall of the spring house


 


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This is the Park's "Kulp house" which is the farm of settler Joseph Smith, who bought the land about the mid 1700's from neighbor George Merkel. It was situated between Rt. 73 and Hedrick Rd., and between Kerr Rd. and the Skippack Creek, Skippack Township. The Library of Congress has documentation of a receipt for food items, paid to Jos. Smith, while General Washington and officers camped in this proximity, in 1777. Germantown Historical Society had a pilgrimage here in 1927, to commemorate the anniversary of the Battle of Germantown. Unfortunately, this historic farm was demolished about the early 1970's.


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This is the "Heatherington house," which is a colonial farmstead that was first of the settler Renberg brothers (or Remburg) which sold to George Merckel about 1720 (could also spelled such as Jorg Merckel, Markle, Markel, Markley). This was a neighboring farm of the "Kulp house" . Locals know this house as "the Palmer house" for the family during the mid 1900's. The oldest residents know this house as being used by, and/or housed, General Washington and officers during their camp here at "Headquarters- Skippack" from Sept. 29 to Oct. 2, 1777. The bank barn has already been demolished. It is a beautiful example of early 1700's construction. This resource is not cared for, and is being let go to fall into disrepair. It seems suspicious that holes have "opened" in the roof after some 40 years of Park ownership. (see pictures).This is the "Heatherington house," which is a colonial farmstead that was first of the settler Renberg brothers (or Remburg) which sold to George Merckel about 1720 (could also spelled such as Jorg Merckel, Markle, Markel, Markley). This was a neighboring farm of the "Kulp house" . Locals know this house as "the Palmer house" for the family during the mid 1900's. The oldest residents know this house as being used by, and/or housed, General Washington and officers during their camp here at "Headquarters- Skippack" from Sept. 29 to Oct. 2, 1777. The bank barn has already been demolished. It is a beautiful example of early 1700's construction. This resource is not cared for, and is being let go to fall into disrepair. It seems suspicious that holes have "opened" in the roof after some 40 years of Park ownership. (see pictures).

 


"Heatherington house" photos from 2008


The eastern facade


A hole that "opened" above the eave, almost perfectly at the center of the facade.

 


 

"Heatherington house" photos from 2014: the eastern facade.


The eastern facade






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Remnants of a hand-dug mill race (circa 1726) along the western bank of the Skippack Creek just upstream of the Skippack Pike bridge, of the saw & grist mill founded by settler Gerhard Indenhofen. It was later of the Pennabecker (Pennypacker) and Shumacher (Shoemaker) families, as indicated on maps of the 1800's. The mill existed up to the early 1900's.




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The "Kibler house" is a farmstead of the very early 1700's, between the west side of Kerr Rd. and the Towamencin Creek, in Towamencin Township. (View looking eastward) The Towamencin Creek flows through the western side of the farm. The land may have been first of settler Peter Wentz, and later of the early Fry family, but not thoroughly verified. The house had four sections. It's said that the oldest part (southern end) might have been built in 1718, as it had a date plaque over the door "PW 1718". The latest part was a kitchen addition, of about 1885. The last owner, from about the 1940's until 2006, was the family of Virginia Kibler, who boarded horses there. The farm was demolished in 2006, although it is said that the Pa. Historic & Museum Commission asked for the house to not be demolished.



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The "Posen house" is a farmstead of the early 1800's or before. The land is originally of an early 1700's settler, but the name is not verified. It was of the Wanner family, as indicated on maps of the 1800's. The farm has an old springhouse, and there was a large bank barn with stone pointed walls. This is a nice old house. It is not being cared for, as you can see. (photos taken in 2011)


"Posen house" photo from 2011: spring house


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The "McDonnell house" is an adjoining farmstead to the east side of the Posen farm, with house and barn, possibly of the 1700's or early 1800's. There is a stone summer-kitchen, with remnants of a large wooden belfry, that is in disrepair. It has detailed trim work from the Victorian period, over the entryway of its front porch. It is not known if this might have served as a schoolhouse, or having a belfry to only call farmers from the field. (View from the road, towards the front porch, 2011.)



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This is a photo taken about 2008. This barn is of the second "McDonnell house," an early farm of the Hunsicker family, to the south of the first McDonnell house, along the southwest corner of Skippack Creek Road and Wayland Road. It appears to be a house of the early 1800's. There is a nice bank barn which the roof is in disrepair, and quickly advancing over the past several years. A simple roof patch would have stopped this. Locals that pass by this farmstead, have seen it deteriorate from a small patch of missing shingles. Apparently, a repair was not allowed here. Barns are accesssory buildings which help to tell a story of the farming activities and early family. This is one reason that farms are able to receive a National Register certification, because they are a cohesive group of structures of the single farm operation. In this case, there is no interest in conserving what is left of American heritage, as so many very old sites around Montgomery county and southeast Pa. have been removed, mostly due to development projects or mismanagement of historic resources.


Photo of the same "McDonnell barn," in 2014.

 


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The "Peters house" photo, taken in 2003. It is the homestead of the settler Hermanus Kuster (or Herman Custer) who arrived soon after 1702. This farmstead is listed on the NATIONAL REGISTER of HISTORIC PLACES. It has an idyllic setting and now consists of the old farmhouse, constructed about 1717, a large barn, and a carriage house. The house has terrific stone work by talented craftsmen. The Kuster's had a fulling mill here also, but it is long gone.

The farmstead is on the National Register for its historical importance, but that does not mean that it is receiving the attention that it deserves. It is critical to have a couple of repairs completed, before both the barn and the carriage-house have advanced damaged. The carriage-house has an opening in the roof, perhaps once again due the lack of repairing the shingles. Walking past the ramp at the upper side of the barn, there is a smaller tree growing close to the stone foundation wall which must have a root that "pushed in" a small area of the wall.


"Peter's house" photo from 2003: the bank barn, and carriage house. View of the northwestern facades.

"Peter's house" photos from 2011: the bank barn's northern gable, and eastern facade.


"Peter's house" photo from 2014: the carriage house, eastern facade. Roof now caving inward. (This farmstead has long been listed on the NATIONAL REGISTER of HISTORIC PLACES. It is one of the State's treasures for heritage tourism.



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The "Honsberger house" photo from 2008. It is a farmstead on the land of the settler Claus Jansen (Johnson) of the early 1700's, and later owned by the Bean family during the early to mid 1900's. This is a picture (below) of the barn, in 2008, where you can see that the roof was left go, to fall within the structure. The barn was later demolished totally.


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