City recognized for preservation of historical Bailey House

The Bailey House in Lyndon City Park recently won a Kansas Preservation Alliance Preservation Stewardship Award for rehabilitation. The Bailey House was open for visitation Saturday during other activities in the park.

Recent work on an old log cabin in Lyndon’s city park has earned the city statewide recognition.

Monday, Peggy Clark, of the Historic Preservation Partnership of Lyndon, delivered to the city council a historical preservation award for the Bailey House, presented by the Kansas Preservation Alliance. Clark and fellow HPPL members, Sarah Walker-Hitt, Colleen Kirsop and Charna Williams, accepted the award during the KPA’s awards of excellence ceremony held May 24 at Topeka.

The Bailey House, which is located in Lyndon City Park, was awarded the KPA’s Preservation Stewardship Award in recognition of recent rehabilitation and stabilization work.

KPA noted the building, which was the oldest in this year’s awards class, represented a strong tie to Osage County’s Native American history.

062113Kay-Jones-Peggy-ClarkPeggy Clark, right, presents the KPA Preservation Stewardship Award to Lyndon Mayor Kay Jones, during the June 17 city council meeting. Courtesy photo.

The log home was moved to the city park in 1997 from about two miles east of Lyndon, the site of a former Sac and Fox Indian village. In recent years, it was thought the house needed rehabilitation to stabilize its foundation and repair some of the logs that make up the structure. Using Kansas State Rehabilitation Tax Credits, a Heritage Trust Fund grant, and city funds, shoring, foundation and window repairs were made, along with replacing some unsalvageable logs with new hand-hewn logs of old growth oak.

The house is believed to have been built by Wells P. Bailey, a trained machinist, about 1870. Bailey had preempted a claim on 160 acres of land east of Lyndon, and officially purchased the property in 1874. At one time it was thought the house was originally built as part of the federal government’s 1860 treaty with the Sac and Fox Indian tribes. The treaty stipulated houses would be built for each tribal family, and specified the manner of construction. Historical investigation revealed that Bailey claimed to have built the house in 1870. Questions still exist about the origin of the home, but recent findings during restoration of the home suggest Bailey might have built his house from materials obtained from abandoned Sac and Fox homes.

Regardless of its origin, the KPA award recognizes that the home was “fashioned after the government spec hewed log houses that were indigenous to the local area following the 1860 treaty for the Sac and Fox tribe.”

The KPA’s Awards of Excellence for historic preservation projects are given to properties that meet the Secretary of Interior’s Standards, are eligible for listing in the Register of Historic Kansas Places, and have an association with significant events or persons in Kansas or U.S. history. The Bailey House was listed on the Register of Historic Kansas Places in 2010.

The project team included the city of Lyndon, Historic Preservation Partnership of Lyndon, Susan Richard Johnson & Associates, Inc., Pishny Restoration Services and Wallace Engineering Structural Consultants, Inc.

Kansas Preservation Alliance is a nonprofit statewide historic preservation organization providing assistance to Kansas communities seeking to save their cultural landmarks.

464_Bailey_awardAccepting the award were project team members Charna Williams, Barbara Poresky of KPA, Sarah Walker-Hitt, Dan Pishny, Colleen Kirsop, and Peggy Clark. Courtesy photo.


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