The blacksmith shop on Main Street in Old Towne is being torn down--carefully. County crews began disassembling the building on Monday and plan to finish the job Wednesday morning.
Last October St. Louis County authorized funds to move Fenton's blacksmith shop, a building dating back to 1908, and place it in Faust Park's Historical Village. Faust Park is where the Butterfly House and old St. Louis Carousel are located.
I called up the County Parks Department and asked if they knew when the building would be rebuilt. Personally, I'd love to take the kids out to Faust and see Fenton's little shop restored to its former glory.
Jesse Francis, the curator for the Historical Village said that they would be placing Fenton's building in storage until fundraising is complete for its restoration. He said the county is using privately raised funds for the project - $15,000 has already been donated and another $10,000 or so is needed.
Francis said that the county is doing as much of the work in house as they can--they used a county crane to take down the building and a county truck to haul the pieces to a storage facility.
When the building is restored it will no longer be a blacksmith shop. The park already acquired an older blacksmith shop from the Spanish Lake area and placed it in the park. Instead, Fenton's building will be displayed as the village's general store.
Francis said the Missouri Historical Society already donated a service counter for the display. A small, one sheet at a time, printing press will be set up in the back room.