Mt Pleasant News
https://mt-pleasant-ia.villagesoup.com/p/1720901

Wash Journal   Fairfield Ledger
Neighbors Growing Together | Feb 19, 2018

41 foot well uncovered in MP

Jan 29, 2018
Photo by: Grace King Big Creek Contracting uncovered a 41 foot well at 106 N. White St. in Mt. Pleasant on Friday, Jan. 26. The well will be filled with sand to keep people from falling in.

By Grace King, Mt. Pleasant News

 

Dave Calhoun was working on excavating the lot at 106 N. White St. in Mt. Pleasant when he uncovered a well, a few feet in parameter, extending 41 feet underground.

The crew with Big Creek Contracting expected to upturn the concrete on the lot and call it a day, but the big hole in the ground was causing problems. They called the Police Department and the Mt. Pleasant Building and Zoning Administrator Jack Swarm to assess the situation.

Calhoun said the wells they come across are usually only half as deep. “I was hoping we would find gold at the bottom,” he said.

Stacy Stevers was on site to say hello to his friends on the crew when they discovered the well. Calhoun joked that they had to stop Stevers from trying to crawl to the bottom.

“Maybe this is where we’ll find the Holy Grail,” Stevers said, as he leaned over the well with a light to peer to the bottom.

The novelty of the well is simply that the structural integrity has held up over the years, especially for one of this depth.

“I don’t think you see wells that are that deep and lined so neatly with limestone rock very often,” Swarm said. “Normally what we see are half collapsed wells or cisterns.”

A well like this would have been used to actually draw water from. A cistern would serve as more like a shallow cave to store water in. Although Swarm couldn’t say how long ago the well was built, Calhoun said it would have been dug by hand, with stones loosely placed one on top of the other.

“To me, it looks like the wells Moses would have built,” Swarm said, adding that the limestone resembles the foundation of buildings in downtown Mt. Pleasant.

The well used to sit under a garage before the property burned down a few months ago. Now that it’s exposed, Swarm said it poses a hazard, calling it an “attractive nuisance,” and that it needs to be filled with sand as quickly as possible. “We’re keeping our eye on it to make sure it is temporarily safeguarded until it is filled in,” he said.

The property belongs to Noah Lobdell.

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