This Place Matters!
Pictured above are members of the Niagara Falls Historic Preservation Society making a statement about the Lavinia Porter Manse located at 162 Buffalo Avenue in the historic area of Niagara Falls across from the Parkway Apartments. The photo has been submitted to the National Trust for Historic Preservation as part of their “This Place Matters” campaign.
Built in 1847 by the daughter of Judge Augustus Porter, the brick Italianate house is proposed for restoration with the help of a $10,000 grant from USA Niagara Development Corporation. The house has potential use as a bed and breakfast/tea room, and is close to the bridge to Goat Island and the new Culinary Arts Program of Niagara County Community College. The home is currently owned by Rev. Gerald Skirlin, who sought the assistance from the NFHPS to find the best use for this historic property.
Lavinia Porter never married, but left her house to the First Presbyterian Church of Niagara Falls as a minister’s residence after caring for her parents, entertaining dignitaries at her father’s house and using her wealth to support the needs of the early village of Niagara Falls. No longer owned by the church, this handsome house has five bedrooms, a large living room/parlor, dining room, kitchen pantry and is envisioned with a “wedding garden” on the adjacent property.
NIAGARA RE-USE PROPOSED
A well-attended breakfast at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Washington’s Birthday in Niagara Falls featured speaker, Kevin Hayes of Buffalo Re-Use. Sponsored by the Main Street Business & Professional Association, the program stimulated many questions and interest in establishing a Re-Use warehouse in Niagara Falls. The large numbers of houses being demolished provides ample reuse possibilities as well as jobs in deconstruction. The opportunity to train individuals in deconstruction techniques that save lumber and architectural components for period buildings was explored.
A committee has been established by the Main Street Business & Professional Association to explore possible sites with warehouse space. Contact Mary Ann Rolland at (716) 745-3462 for more information.