Community Foundation wants to finish Fort Kaskaskia rebuild project

REPAIR WORK CONTINUES–The shelter at Fort Kaskaskia was rebuilt by FS Construction Services in October 2018. The Community Foundation of Randolph County is currently working on raising funds to repair the original knee walls, one of which is seen in the foreground of this picture. When finished, the knee walls will match the four corner pillars of the shelter. Photo courtesy of Stephanie Martin.

The Community Foundation of Randolph County will be raising money to enhance the newly rebuilt shelter at Fort Kaskaskia.

“We were recently completing a photo shoot at the shelter,” said Stephanie Martin, chairwoman of the foundation’s marketing committee. “When looking at the pictures, we noticed the obvious difference between the condition of the stonework and masonry on the four pillars of the rebuilt shelter, and the four knee walls that occupy the corners just outside of the shelter. The shelter is beautiful in every way, but the knee walls have deteriorated since they were built over 80 years ago and need to be repaired to preserve them and make them safe. Some stones are missing and some need enhancing, along with the original concrete.”

There is also a fifth knee wall that contains several historic plaques at the river overlook.

“The cost of repairing the five knee walls was included in the original quote to rebuild the shelter,” added marketing committee vice chairwoman Mary Koester. “The thought last October was to get the shelter built with the money raised so people could use it, and then look at repairing the knee walls in the spring.”

For more on the Fort Kaskaskia shelter project, please see this week’s print edition.