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University plans to rebuild historic Hanawalt

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Andres Rivera
Staff Writer

Immediately following the destructive December fire, the University of La Verne’s landmark Hanawalt house was fenced off – to be left alone until its fate was decided.

Recently, however, University President Steve Morgan’s office has decided to rebuild the 100-year-old structure, whose top floor was reduced to ashes, said ULV spokesman Charles Bentley.

However, the details relating to this project are yet to be determined.

“The house will be rebuilt,” Bentley said. “In what form or shape, I can’t tell you.”

It has not been decided whether the house will be rebuilt to resemble its architectural time period or whether it will ultimately sport a more modern look.

These are among the details being discussed.

Furthermore, it has not been decided when or how the project will be completed.

The Hanawalt project may be linked with another construction project – that new residential hall adjacent to the old house.

Meanwhile, since this winter’s heavy rains threatened to further damage what was left of the Hanawalt structure, boards and roofing were installed in the damaged part of the building to protect the section of the house that was not harmed by the fire.

Immediately adjacent to the structure is a plot of land, which serves as one of two model archaeological sites.

Bentley said this site was not compromised by the fire or subsequent clean-up.

However, Assistant Professor of Anthropology Felicia Beardsley, who uses the site, said she was not told the site, which is being used by workers, would be off-limits.

The archaeology class will have its first field study next week, and it will not be able to use the dig site.

“At least we have an alternate site,” Beardsley said.

Beardsley said she will look into what the workers plan for the site and when her classes will be able to use it.

Once the Hanawalt House, former home to the human resources department, is rebuilt, it not apparent whether or not the department will return.

Human resources was temporarily moved alongside the Office of Information Technology in the old post office building.

The department could be relocated to temporary portable structures until its permanent location is chosen.

Before the fire, plans were in the works to place a plaque on the Hanawalt House distinguishing it as one of the oldest buildings in La Verne in honor of it’s 100th anniversary.

Bentley said adding the plaque’s installation has been postponed.

Galen Beery of the La Verne Historical Society wrote a letter to the University Relations office addressing the presentation of the plaque.

In the letter Beery suggested a mini ceremony be held in September to commemorate W.C. Hanawalt and his family, who arrived at Lordsburg in 1902.

The plaque would be presented during the ceremony.

“I don’t know the schedule, it is just a suggestion,” Beery said.

Beery said the people walking by and expressing their reactions to the burned house impressed him.

Andres Rivera can be reached at arivera3@ulv.edu.

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