TIFFIN – Front end loaders ripped away the concrete steps on the Washington Street side of Seneca County’s 1884 courthouse Wednesday – the first blow to the building’s exterior.
Bricks and stone were crushed and spread on the ground nearby, apparently in an attempt to create a firm base for heavy wrecking equipment.
B&B Wrecking and Excavating of Cleveland, which was hired by county commissioners to demolish the historic courthouse for $373,000, also delivered a large crane to the fenced-off courthouse site.
Historic preservationists who carried signs of protest were distraught to see the stairs removed.
Brenda Stultz said did not expect any demolition until Thursday. She said she “lost it” when the destruction began.
“That’s why I was able to sleep last night because I thought we had a bit of breathing room,” she said.
Ms. Stultz said the lack of trust she feels in her county commissioners is worse than the lack of a courthouse.
“My money is being used to do this,” she said, looking at the wrecking equipment. “I don’t want my money invested this way.”
B&B Wrecking is to have the courthouse demolished and the site cleared by Feb. 1.