Letter: An historic crime

An historic crime

Editor of the Reformer:

A crime dictated by insurance companies and carried out by our chosen officials. I'm referring to the tearing down of a beautiful historic home and barn that is part of the quintessential fa├žade that makes up the unofficial village of West Brattleboro.

Growing up in the 70s, we referred to it as "the Joneses place." Mr. and Mrs. Jones were what I would refer to as salt of the earth Vermonters. I believe that they lived there for some 60 years. Mrs. Jones was kind and could be seen picking the iridescent beetles off her roses and putting them in her kitchen apron during the summers. Mr. Jones took a lot of pride in his huge garden that he watered with a pump he had set up in the Whetstone Brook. It is a huge Federal style house and beautiful barn probably built in the mid 1800s and served as a home for a good 150 years.

It is my understanding that because the damage done by Irene is estimated at more than what the house is worth, it is slated to be torn down. I'm not sure how a modern-day insurance company appraises the value of things like historic significance and aesthetic beauty. What makes me wonder even more is how our chosen officials just follow suit and don't ask any questions or make any effort to preserve the threads that make up the fabric of this historic little village.

In my book, it's a crime to tear down a sturdy structure with slate roofs and stone foundations built by the hands of the people who founded this town.

Ian Diamondstone, Brattleboro, June 14


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