- Associated Press - Friday, December 4, 2015

MUSCATINE, Iowa (AP) - A historic mansion in Muscatine has been demolished after it sustained severe damage from a fire.

The Muscatine Journal (http://bit.ly/1NwgGEF ) reports that a small crowd gathered Thursday morning to watch as a crew demolished the Huttig mansion. The mansion, which was built in 1892 by a Muscatine lumber baron, was damaged in a fire Tuesday. It was bought by the current owner in 1987.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Dr. Mike Maharry, a member of the Muscatine Historic Preservation Commission, called the two-story Queen Anne Victorian mansion one of the most important historic homes in the city due to its architecture. The home also housed several irreplaceable antiques.

The home was about 5,200 square feet and took up about half a block. Family members were able to salvage some items from the home.

Maharry had hoped to help the mansion’s owner secure what remained of the home with a fence for public safety, and then reach out to experts to determine if the structure could be renovated.

“Somebody should have the opportunity if they so choose to restore this building,” he said.

The Muscatine Fire Department said the decision to demolish the home was made by an insurance company in conjunction with the property owner.

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Information from: Muscatine Journal, http://www.muscatinejournal.com

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