MARIETTA - It took four years for the late Douglas Putnam to build the house that's come to be called The Anchorage for his wife, Eliza.
It's taken far longer than that for restoration of the historic building, built in 1859.
The annual porch sale to benefit restoration work on The Anchorage will wrap up today from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with everything from clothes and books to knickknacks for sale.
Photo by Kevin Pierson
Marietta residents Gretchen Otto, right, and Judy Van Dyk, left, look over some of the items available during a porch sale at The Anchorage in Marietta Friday.
"I promised myself I wasn't going to buy anything at this one," laughed Judy Van Dyk, 72, of Marietta, after taking a pile of goodies to the checkout and returning for more. "I like unique things and they always turn up here."
Proceeds from the sale are one of the key sources of funding for the Washington County Historical Society as it works to restore The Anchorage to its former glory.
After serving as a residence for the Putnams and famous Marietta residents like Edward MacTaggert, the building also served as a nursing home in the 1970s.
If You Go
What: Porch sale to benefit restoration of The Anchorage.
Where: The Anchorage, located near Harmar Place Rehabilitation and Extended Care Facility.
When: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. today.
The Washington County Historical Society purchased The Anchorage from Marietta Memorial Hospital in 1996 for $1, and has been working on restoring the building since.
"We haven't done much work upstairs because we're trying to fix the downstairs," said Georgaleen Hockenberry, a trustee with the historical society.
Through the efforts of volunteers, and fundraising efforts like the porch sale, floors in the dining room and music room have been refinished. Some walls and ceilings, such as the entryway hallway, have been redone.
One room, dubbed the DAR room for the Daughters of the American Revolution who provided the bulk of the funding, has been completely restored.
"A lot of things, like the boiler system and the french drains don't show, but it's been a lot of money," said Ruth Thorniley, vice president of the historical society.
Replacement of the roof is the biggest project yet to be addressed at The Anchorage.
Past estimates to replace the roof have been from $70,000 to $90,000.
Once it is restored, the ground floor of The Anchorage will become a museum and research library for the historical society. The historical society plans to eventually move into the 22-room building.
With such grand goals, fundraising is especially important given the costs.
"The work we do is done by volunteers, but we have to buy the materials," Hockenberry said. "We can work as long as we have money."
Fundraisers such as the porch sale provide a significant boost to the restoration efforts, as past sales have raised between $800 and $1,000.
Offering more than just clothes, the porch sale has a lot of unique items as well, Van Dyk noted.
A wedding gown sold early in the day Friday and several more formal gowns were still there in the afternoon, and the dresses were well worth the price, Van Dyk said.
"The prices, they really are right," Van Dyk said. "They're almost giving stuff away. It's great."