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Elgin gets $90,000 renovation grant

Staff writer

The Historic Elgin Hotel has been awarded a $90,000 Heritage Trust Fund grant for repairing windows and working on its dining hall.

Tammy Ensey, co-owner of the Elgin, said as part of the application process, she went to Topeka last Friday to present her plans for the project.

“They had a hearing last Friday for us to plead our case,” Ensey said. “There were 38 applicants, to the tune of just under $2.7 million asked.”

Ensey first heard Saturday morning that the Elgin was awarded the full $90,000 requested.

The largest portion of the award will be spent on the Elgin’s 98 windows.

“We will probably start with the south side because they are worse,” Ensey said.

The grant is a matching-fund grant, requiring $90,000 spent from the Elgin’s own funds.

“I have to come up with 50 percent,” Ensey said. “I’ll have to turn around and find some more grant money or do some fundraisers.”

She’d earlier envisioned getting work started in early spring.

“I’m guessing it will be more like mid-summer,” Ensey said.

Hillsboro’s Pioneer Adobe House, also known as the Peter Paul Loewen house, also was awarded a $69,340 Heritage Trust Fund grant for masonry work.

The building, part of the Mennonite Heritage Museum, will also get work on the cellar, Mary Regier, chairwoman of the Hillsboro Museum Advisory Board, said.

Masonry work will be done on the outside of the house as well as every room inside. Rooms include a living room, entry, two bedrooms, sewing room, kitchen, and pantry.

The work in the cellar will include repairs to the steps, walls and floor as well as addition of a sump pump.

“We have to do a 20 percent match,” Regier said.

The house was built in 1876 in Hoffnungstal, south of Hillsboro on the bank of the South Cottonwood River, and moved to its present location in 1958.

Regier does not yet know when work will began.

Only 15 of the 38 applicants received grants.

Last modified Feb. 8, 2017

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