Historic Lee fountain in desperate need of $35,000 repair, restoration

LEE — Berkshire Gateway Preservation president Garth Story is hoping to raise $35,000 to fund the restoration of Lee’s historic fountain by Town Hall. Carved out of local Lee marble back in 1899, the fountain has fallen into disrepair as age and weather have led to cleaves and cracks setting in over time.
“You will perhaps see a fundraising letter out in the next month or two,” said Story at a selectboard meeting on Nov. 21. “We’d love to have it out before January, but I don’t know if that can happen.”
The initial cost of the construction according to Story was no more than a few hundred dollars (for comparison, $100 in 1899 is equivalent to $2,817 in 2017). Berkshire Gateway Preservation contacted Allegrone Masonry to assist in the restoration of the fountain, but were met with apprehension from the company. The organization has also consulted with a conservation specialist and a monument restoration expert to prepare for the reconstruction.
The final call was to Vern Tower, a marble worker in Lee. “We are not going to restore in back to perfect or anything,” said Story. “But there are slots and cracks that need to be filled and sealed.”

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