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Kammerer House opens doors for final time

April 03, 1999|By DAN KULIN /Staff Writer

She cried softly, taking one last walk through and around the historic Kammerer House, which is expected to begin coming down Monday.

"It's the history of the community. It's a shame for it to have lasted this long just to knock it down," said Darlene Higgins, a member of the Middleburg/Mason-Dixon Line Area Historical Society, a group which has been trying to save the historic house since 1996.

"It's the historic significance of the house," said Tom Waltz, 29, of Falling Waters, W.Va.

"You can see how they lived, and if you go into the basement you can hear the water from the underground spring," Waltz said. "It's too bad. There aren't many left."

Built around 1774 by Johan Ludwig Kammerer, the two-story stone house sits on a half-acre lot in the Airport Business Park near the Pennsylvania state line. It is one of the oldest houses in Washington County.

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Friday and Saturday afternoon about 35 people came to see the house before demolition work begins.

Visitors to the house included the Kemerer family from Columbus, Ohio, who claimed to be descendants of the original owners.

Many visitors brought cameras to document the piece of history they fear will soon be gone.

Some were drawn by curiosity.

"I decided I wanted to see what it was all about before they took it down. To see why they wanted to save it," said Hagerstown resident Mary V. Johnson.

Workers from Allegany Wrecking and Salvage in Hagerstown will begin dismantling the house Monday. The demolition is expected to take about 30 days to complete.

The land the house sits on is owned by the Hagerstown-Washington County Industrial Foundation Inc., and is under contract to be sold to Citicorp Credit Services Inc.

Citicorp has an office building and a child care complex on two sides of the house, which sits on the edge of a field next to a parking lot.

It was unknown what the land will be used for once the house is removed.

Many people speculated the land will become another parking lot.

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