Keeping the character

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PENDLETON — Josh Ring said the house and property he and his wife, Kelly, bought in 2022, at 459 E. Water St., have a lot of history.
For starters, the two-story, 2,750-square-foot house — with 18-inch-thick exterior stone walls — was built in 1908 by Kirk Hallowell.
As for the property, the 3½-acre lot — once part of an at-least-23-acres farm — has pieces of green glass strewn throughout, evidence of a glass company that was located there for one year in the 1890s, before it burned down. Large sections of the brick glass furnaces remain in a recessed area on the property.
Still, Ring said he was a little surprised when a woman showed up at the house unexpectedly several weeks ago, asking if he’d mind if she put a sign in his yard; it was a Preservation Award from Historic Fall Creek, Pendleton Settlement.
He agreed, he said, because “I support promoting the historic preservation stuff.”
The woman who put the sign at the Rings’ is Cathy Pasko, who’s on the Historic Fall Creek board and its membership committee.
The settlement group is a non-profit organization focused on preserving historic buildings and culture in the area.
Pasko said fellow member Sandi Butler had mentioned the Ring home as a contender for the award.
“It was that stone house that’d never been changed,” Pasko said. “It looks the same as, probably, when it was built.”
Butler said the process to determine which houses get the award is straightforward, and the criteria are fairly basic.
“The houses are brought before the Historic Fall Creek board, and we decide; we look at the house, and we say ‘Yeah, that’s a good one,” Butler said. “It’s all based on whether the home is over 50 years old and the original character of the home is still retained.”
Butler said the settlement — which she co-founded with four others in the late 1980s and which succeeded in getting the Town of Pendleton on the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places — determines which homes to highlight with the Preservation Award mostly during spring, summer and fall.
“We try to do at least a couple of homes; sometimes there’s three homes. We try to do it every couple of months.
“Just so they get acknowledgement, and lots of people drive by and look at the home. It’s really good for the community because it encourages other homeowners to retain the original architecture of the home.”
The award is open only to homes that are on the national register, which includes most homes that were within town limits in 1991, when the town was placed on the register.
Pasko and Butler both mentioned preserving the status on the national register as another objective behind celebrating and promoting the preservation of local structures.
“We like to keep them historic because we don’t want to be taken off the historical register because they’ve been changed,” Pasko said.
“We can lose our national register,” Butler said. “They don’t normally do that, but they can.”
The Ring home is one of three homes with the Preservation Award sign in the yard.
The other two belong to Diane Maydak, 207 N. Pendleton Ave., and Jim and Carla Clegg, 308 S. Broadway St.
“Diane Maydak’s (home) was built by one of the pharmacists that lived in Pendleton, and she has kept it so perfect,” Pasko said. “The windows are all the same, they’re wood, they’re perfect. She keeps everything … as it was when it was built … she’s never changed anything.”
And “the Clegg home is a beautiful brick house … they have taken such good care of it — it’s beautiful.”