MUSEUM: Local treasure threatened

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In less than 45 days another historic Coeur d’Alene home will be plowed down in favor of new, trendy townhouses. Of course I’m referring to the White House, that grand old home at Eighth and Sherman. Built in 1903 by J.C. White, it is a direct connection to the rich history of steamboats and early Coeur d’Alene. And in early October it will be destroyed.

But we are in the unique position of being able to save it. And not only save it but open it up to every man, woman and child to enjoy. But time is literally ticking away.

The concept of moving the White House and using it as the anchor for a new Museum of North Idaho brings a win-win situation for our community. The current museum has no heating or cooling. It has never been open year-round. The museum can display less than half the artifacts it has. The city wants the building gone to make City Park even more fantastic. We’ve been looking for decades.

As a former trustee for the museum, I can attest to the efforts made, and the sites and options visioned and planned over the years, and this is the first solid, feasible and do-able option we’ve had. But it takes money. That’s where “we” come in.

If you care at all about the quality of our community, make a donation to the museum. If you think a 116-year-old building would be better being used as opposed to just vanish, make a donation. If you want your kids to tell their grandkids about the time we moved a whole building down Sherman, make a donation. If you’ve donated something to the museum but it’s in storage rather than on display, make a donation. If you are a member of a local civic club or organization, please bring this up at your next meeting and make a donation.

The museum has a guaranteed matching fund agreement up to $300,000 so your donation doubles. Stop by the museum or call 208-664-3448 to get involved.

Time is running out. Save our White House. Save our museum.

DAVE WALKER

Coeur d’Alene

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