Staff, board members and volunteers were busy Saturday at the Ellis County Historical Society Museum moving items after a portion of a plaster wall on the top floor collapsed.
Director Lee Dobratz said a section of plaster about 3 feet by 4 feet fell from a wall on the third floor of the red-brick former Presbyterian Church at Seventh and Main. There was no water damage, but she and her staff along with volunteers removed boxes and storage totes of mostly clothing from two rooms to protect them until repairs can be made.
“Water was running between the inside brick wall and the plaster, and the plaster was working like a dam or a diversion to make water run into the basement where we could clean it up,” Dobratz said Saturday from a narrow stairway as containers were handed down to her.
“So next time it rains and the plaster is not there to divert it, it’s going to come pouring in the third floor,” she said.
The clothing is being stored in the adjoining stone church. Most of it is in containers, but some military uniforms were on hangers in the chapel Saturday afternoon.
Dobratz said she had been in contact with some roofing companies Saturday to get some emergency repairs made.
In February, the historical society’s board voted to obtain a feasibility study with Nabholz Inc. to determine costs and possible designs of a new building.