RUSK COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – For months, East Texans in Rusk County have asked the community to help preserve their historic church dating back to the 1850’s.
The Pine Grove Cumberland Presbyterian Church is the oldest church building in all of Rusk County. It has major wear and tear from the ground all the way up and now they’ve received enough funds for the first major part of the project.
“The foundation is what everything sits on, it’s the most important. It’s not terrible in the sense of it all being rotten underneath it, its pretty stable. It’s quite a bit out of level,“ said Robert Vaughn, vice chair of the East Texas Shapemusic Association.
The foundation was raised about three inches and new beams were added in the spaces because the middle of the church has sagged.
“It looks like its dropped it dropped a good four inches and we are also adding a few beams in between the one that are already there because they had too much far of a span from the outside to the center,” said Rick Humes, owner of Humes Inspections and Foundations.
On Tuesday, the contractors will finish leveling the back of the church.
“Back then they didn’t have a lot of building codes or anything so now a days when we go into them we look at the codes as part of the inspections and make sure we build everything to code,” said Humes.
Humes said this is isn’t the worst project he’s seen.
“This one here is not really that bad for the age of the building. I mean built in the late 1800’s it appears, but we are just leveling it and sowing it up just a little bit,” said Humes.
This century old church is only used for special occassions and as far as the community is concerned, they said its worth saving.
“It’s worth saving” said Vaughn.
The next big project is the roof, costing around $20,000. Donations can be made to the church through the Pine Grove Church Restoration GoFundMe online.