Meanwhile, historians hope to save one of the plant’s last houses.

As a Superfund environmental cleanup rolls on around it, an old house needs a new home.

Local historians hope to preserve the former Wyckoff plant’s sole remaining row house, believed to be of pre-World War I construction and the last of 17 that were part of the company town called Creosote.

“Even if it got moved and became affordable housing, that’s better than having it destroyed,” said Joan Piper, director of the Bainbridge Historical Museum.

The house is one of three still perched on the hillside near the Wyckoff property’s main gate, just off Eagle Harbor Drive.

Piper said the structure recalls the plant’s heyday, when a company town that sprang up around the longtime wood-treating facility boasted its own post office, dance hall and baseball team.

The plant closed in the late 1980s after nearly a century of operation, and the highly polluted property was added to the federal Superfund list.

All three of the remaining houses have been abandoned for years, and have been subjected to ongoing vandalism by island teens.

The historical society has given up on preserving the two larger houses. But Piper said architects who toured the structures recently believe the one-time row house, the smallest of the three, is salvageable.

The floors don’t sag and there’s little water damage, she said.

Piper said the property trustee wants the house out of the way for liability reasons, and it will be torn down if it isn’t moved.

That gives the historical society until next week to find a donor to sponsor its relocation.

Also needed: land for the house to sit on, indefinitely, until its future can be resolved.

Piper suggested that should the Wyckoff property become a local or national park, the house could be moved back and used as an interpretive center.

Anyone who would like to contribute to the building’s preservation should call the museum at 842-2773, before Nov. 20.

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