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Old Zullinger school due a new look

May 26, 2004|BY RICHARD BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail,com

ZULLINGER, Pa. - In seven years, the building that once was the four-room Zullinger School turns 100 years old.

By that time, the two-story brick building on Buchanan Trail East should be familiar to area residents as a place to hold weddings and private parties and provide community, hospitality and meeting rooms, said James Smith, chairman of the Waynesboro Historical Society's Preservation Committee.

The school was donated to the society in 2000. Before that it was last used in the early 1990s as a community center.

"It was vacant for about 12 years," Smith said.

Smith said the society has raised about $140,000 in grants and donations, which will be used to repair the building's exterior.

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The biggest single amount is a matching $58,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. Money also came in from two $10,000 grants secured by state Rep. Pat Fleagle, R-Franklin, other smaller grants and business and individual donations, Smith said.

The society has spent some of the money to repair the roof and board up the windows, which were damaged by vandals while the building was empty.

Work is expected to begin in June on the exterior, which will include repointing and replacing needed bricks and stone lintels, installation of a handicapped-accessible ramp in back and new steps up front.

The society had trouble at first finding a contractor to bid on the repair and replacement of the wooden cornice work between the roof and brick walls, Smith said.

"We expect to have all of the exterior work done this year," he said.

Next year, the society will launch another fund drive to raise a like amount to renovate the building's interior. That will include all new heating, electrical and plumbing systems, replastered walls, new ceilings and renovated floors.

"It will be nice to think that the building will be ready to use by people in 2005," Smith said.

Smith won't be responsible for the next fund drive. James Fisher, a Second Street resident, takes over as committee chairman next month.

The building ended its career as a school at the end of the 1961-62 school year when the Waynesboro Area School District consolidated. Before that, it housed grades one through eight in four rooms, two down and two up. It has a full basement and an attic.

Zullinger School was built in 1911 to take in students from one-room schools in Zullinger, Salem and Pleasant Hill during an earlier consolidation.

The historical society also owns the Oller House at 138 W. Main St., which serves as its headquarters, the historic Harbaugh Church and the old stone bridge on Welty Road.

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