- Associated Press - Monday, June 23, 2014

NEW ALBANY, Ind. (AP) - Crews have started working to replace the roof of a state-owned mansion in southern Indiana for the first time since it was built in the 1860s.

Contractors have put up scaffolding that surrounds the 60-foot high walls of the Culbertson Mansion in New Albany for the roof-replacement project, the News and Tribune reported (https://bit.ly/1punvMR ).

The historic nature of the mansion complicates the project because crews aren’t allowed to attach any equipment to it, Culbertson Mansion State Historical Site manager Jessica Stavros said.

“So the scaffolding all has to be free standing,” Stavros said.

Businessman William Culbertson built the three-story house with 25 rooms in the Ohio River city just north of Louisville, Kentucky. It includes semi-circular bays on three of its corners, along with designs painted by artists on the walls, ceilings and cornices of the first and second floors.

The house was completed in 1869, and the state has owned it since 1976.

Stavros said the roofing work is expected to be finished by the end of summer and the mansion remains open to visitors.

Workers have discovered nuances about the original construction of the roof while removing shingles that were placed more than 140 years ago. The lumber used for the roof was different sizes and lengths, and the grooves of the wood suggest it was probably milled on site, Stavros said.

Some of the pieces of the original roof will be kept in the Culbertson Mansion and might be sold in the gift shop so that people can take home a piece of history, she said.

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Information from: News and Tribune, Jeffersonville, Ind., https://www.newsandtribune.com

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