Electric problem was cause of fire at Miners' Village
DAVID ONDER/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS An electrical problem was deemed the cause of the fire that caused major damage to a home at Eckley's Miners Village.
A state police fire marshal stated it was an electrical problem that caused major damage to a 160-year old home Tuesday at Eckley Miners' Village outside of Freeland in Foster Township.
George Gera, 86, who lived at 40 Main Street much of him life, told reporters he hopes the state will rebuild; since the state owns all the historic homes in Eckley.
"I was hopeful they'd probably re-construct it," said Gera. "I'd like to live there again, that's my hope."
Architects with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission checked out the damage Wednesday.
"We're in the evaluation process now," said Bode Morin, site administrator. "We're trying to determine the structural stability of the building and what's actually salvageable. And this is going to be a multi-week process so we may not know for a while."
Officials pointed out that most of the damage is in the rear of the home where the miners made their own additions to company houses. They added that it is still early in the process of determining what can be done but the hope is to at least maintain the front of the house and at least keep the look and feel of the street of homes in Eckley.
"While the houses expressed the company, the out buildings were a direct expression of the people who lived here," Morin said.
Eckley representatives said it could take a month or so before it's determined what can be done with the house. But despite the fire, all events scheduled for the miners' village are still on schedule this summer.