Deitz House Moving Engineers is proud to announce our involvement in a unique preservation project. We’ll be assisting in the restoration of the historical Bignell Schoolhouse.
Located near the shores of Lake Michigan, the Bignell Schoolhouse rests in the charming town of Grand Haven. The one room schoolhouse closed its doors sometime in the mid 1950s. Little known and almost forgotten, this relic of the past has survived nearly a century and a half.
The story of the Bignell Schoolhouse is almost entirely a mystery. We know it was built in 1876 by Hattie and James Bignell on their 160 acre farm. Hattie was the original schoolteacher and the one room schoolhouse seated 52 children, grades 1-8.
Over the years potential buyers have considered tearing down the schoolhouse, unaware of its historical significance. That is, until the property was rescued by its current owner Tim Travis. Tim intends to discover the hidden secrets behind centuries of renovations.
The Deitz House Moving team will be carefully lifting the Bignell schoolhouse from its failing foundation, installing a brand new foundation and gently setting it back down. Upon completion, the Travis family intends to restore the character and charm of the original 19th century architecture.
Daniel Deitz is co-owner and lead structural moving engineer at Deitz House Moving Engineers, Inc. DHM owners Richard Deitz & Daniel Deitz have both served as President of the International Association of Structural Movers.