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252-Year-Old House On The Move In Belmont

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The Thomas Clark House is loaded on a flat bed in Belmont. (Photo Credit: Dominic Aielli)

The Thomas Clark House is loaded on a flat bed in Belmont. (Photo Credit: Dominic Aielli)

BELMONT (CBS) – A house in Belmont that predates the Revolutionary War has been saved from the wrecking ball, at least temporarily.

The Thomas Clark House, which was built 252 years ago when Massachusetts was still a British colony, was moved on Saturday from its lot on Common Street to a new spot on Concord Ave.

The move is a result of a rescue effort by the Belmont Historical Commission, the Architectural Heritage Foundation, and others after the property was purchased by a developer.

WBZ-TV’s Jim Smith reports

“The threat was to demolish it and that would have been a tragedy,” said Lydia Ogilby, who works on the commission.

Dozens of people came out to see history in the making and history preserved. Longtime residents say they house is a looking glass into the past.

“They can see the smoke of Bunker Hill from the house, from the hill behind it. It represented some of the underground railway, of the slaves escaping,” said Ogilby.

Private donations allowed the house to be moved onto a new piece of property owned by the town until a buyer is found.

The crowd included Peter Sifneos, who grew up in the home.

“It’s very emotional for me,” he said. “For one thing it’s sad to see it leave its original home, but then again I’m glad it’s still here.”

Perhaps the toughest job was Brian Lagasse’s, the truck driver responsible for towing the house away safely.

“Inch by inch. Every little divot in the ground, everything moves, everything creaks and cracks and you gotta double-check it and double-check it and triple-check it,” he said.

The antique colonial will be stored at its new location for up to six months while preservationists try to find a permanent location for the house.

If no permanent location can be found, the house will eventually be demolished.

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