Jesse R. Benedict is a graduate of Penn State University, where he studied Labor and Industrial Relations and Real Estate Law. He also has first hand experience in the construction business having partnered in the family business. With this background and a deeply held desire to reclaim and preserve antique barns, buildings and historical stone, he founded "Benedict Antique Lumber and Stone."
Living in the Endless Mountains of Pennsylvania, Benedict has had the opportunity to see a variety of barns and mills; the familiar bank barns, the circular barns, the railway siding mills and water powered mills. Farming has changed and many farm buildings are showing increased signs of neglect with some being demolished. Benedict's desire is to save, restore, reassemble, and create new buildings, interiors, exteriors, and furniture with the historical timber.
Benedict is a hands-on businessman who enjoys working with these old structures and materials. There are interesting stories attached to many of them and similar to an archaeologist, you attempt to get a sense of that history.
Benedict dismantles historical wood and stone structures painstakingly by hand, mapping, and labeling each piece to maintain the authenticity of each part, similar to an archaeologist approach.
An article in the Scranton Times Tribune referred to Benedict and his crew of sweeping in and rebuilding dilapidated barns, and breathing new life into old structures.
The crew works as a team to accomplish the task at hand under the direction and instruction of Benedict. Dismantling a barn demands the working of a team because safety is the primary issue and the work is all done by hand. Similar to the construction of barns from over a hundred years ago, today's repair and construction of timber frame buildings is labor intensive and slow moving. Beams can weigh 400 lbs and are not easily tossed around.
The crew shares in the enthusiasm of the uniqueness of their work and are proud to be part of history. Taking photos of the barns and getting the stories from their owners is part of the job. I guess you might say this is the fun part. Finding old newspapers and objects from days gone by are the hidden treasures they expose and give to their owners.
Benedict Antique Lumber and Stone is a small, rural business that enjoys working with barns and then providing materials and a complete line of building services to home owners, architects, contractors, and barn restorers. Benedict Antique Lumber and Stone is located in Susquehanna County, PA and is a proud member of the Northern Tier Hardwood Association of Pennsylvania.