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Although a social media campaign has already begun to save a historic barn on a lot purchased nearly five years ago by WellSpan, the hospital system says it has not yet arrived at a plan for the property.
WellSpan spokesperson Ryan Coyle said that there wasn’t anything new to share on the property at present.
“While no final determination has been made at this time related to this property, WellSpan Health continually evaluates opportunities to expand access to care now and for the future in Lebanon County,” said Coyle.
The 4.58-acre property was purchased for $1 million in July 2018 by WellSpan Properties Inc. Not previously reported by LebTown was WellSpan’s other purchase that month, a 5.32-acre neighboring property for $770,000.
The nearly 10 acres of WellSpan-owned land along Rocherty Road abut the site of planned Phase Four and Phase Five expansions of North Cornwall Commons.
Read More: WellSpan considering options for lot at Rocherty and Cornwall
The red, brick-enclosure barn was built in 1797, though it’s unclear how much has been added or reconstructed since then. Known variously as the Brown Hospitality Farm and the J.P.S.J.G. Farm, among other names, it was among the barns included in LebTown’s October 2020 guide to the barn architecture of Lebanon County.
Read More: A beginner’s guide to the barn architecture of Lebanon County
The social media campaign to save the barn was initiated by Dana Lape, an active Lebanon County agriculturist who serves on a litany of ag-related boards – in addition to having a claim to fame as the possible progenitor of Lebanon’s Bologna Drop.
Read More: Dana Lape identifies himself as man behind Lebanon’s famous Bologna Drop
“There has to be an organization out there in our county that can help save this building,” wrote Lape.
Lape noted that the barn is actually older than Lebanon County itself – Lebanon County was carved out of Dauphin and Lancaster counties in 1813.
“If the hospital needs to build there, I wish they would save this building and utilize it,” continued Lape in the Facebook post, which has since been liked and shared hundreds of times.
Via followup, LebTown asked if WellSpan would be open to exploring the possibility of working with historic preservation groups and/or other parties on possible solutions for preserving the barn at another site, however the spokesperson said that he wasn’t able to share any further responses at this time.
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