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Students, historical society struggle to preserve cabin

President David Black granted a last-minute stay of demolition for the old Log Cabin, which had been slated for destruction on the 16th.

The Oct. 13 decision came after a group of Radnor township residents involved in historic preservation, joined by Eastern senior Emily Carlson, appealed the planned demolition.

Ted Pollard, the president of the Radnor Historical Society, learned of the planned demolition early last week when one of his board members called him after seeing activity at the Log Cabin while walking her dog.

Involved in the appeal with Pollard were Beverlee Barnes, the manager of the preservation section of the Delaware County Planning Department; Charles Kline, a member of the Radnor Conservancy; Adrian Fine, the regional director of the northeast district of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and Carlson.

“Once these structures are gone, if we want to study the architecture, all we have is the pictures,” Pollard said.

According to Barnes, the cabin was designed by the famous architect David Knickerbacker and was one of the first clubhouses in the area.

The Radnor group’s goal is to get another opinion on how usable the cabin is, according to group members.

Black agreed to the group’s requests but remained unconvinced that the cabin can be saved.

“We have to respect people’s passions,” he said. “We have very strong documentation from an engineer firm and an entomologist ensuring us it’s impossible to preserve the building.”

He said the cabin was declared unusable by an entomologist five years ago, and he feels the cabin is a safety hazard.

“The tragedy is that it got to the condition it’s in,” Black said.

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