2013-11-21 / Front Page

Cupola Tops Historic Former Mansion Again

24,000 Pound Rotunda Hoisted Atop Minimart
David Keeler

Spectators look on as a crane from Wyalusing's B&K Equipment lifts  the eight-sided, 24,000-pound cupola to the top of the Wysox Dandy Mini Mart. The minimart is housed in a historic former mansion that dates back to1872. Photo by David KeelerSpectators look on as a crane from Wyalusing's B&K Equipment lifts the eight-sided, 24,000-pound cupola to the top of the Wysox Dandy Mini Mart. The minimart is housed in a historic former mansion that dates back to1872. Photo by David Keeler

For the first time since March 1978, when its original cupola was removed, the former Piollet Mansion in Wysox looks much like it did after it was constructed, starting in 1872.

Earlier today, Friday, Nov. 22, a crane from Wyalusing’s B&K Equipment hoisted a new cupola into place atop the community landmark. The new glass-sided octagonal structure weighs nearly 24,000 pounds, measures about 30 feet across at its base, stands about 24 feet tall and has 12 windows on each of its eight sides. The cupola has been under construction for about three months by Middendorf Construction, which also completed other restoration at the historic mansion, including replacing all of its windows.

Dandy Mini Mart owner Randy Williams said a 10-ft. spire will be added to the top of the cupola. There will also be LED lights around the cupola base and a single pendant lamp inside the cupola itself.

The cupola will serve as skylight 40 feet above a dining area inside the minimart. “It would have made more sense to level the building and start from bare ground,” Williams said, “but this is a historic building and we wanted to save it.” There will be no public access to the cupola, he said.

The abandoned Piolett Mansion as it looked in the 1960's. Photo by William KeelerThe abandoned Piolett Mansion as it looked in the 1960's. Photo by William Keeler

The first floor minimart and gas pumps were closed as a safety precaution while the cupola was put in place. A computer problem with the crane delayed the operation for about 40 minutes.

The community landmark was built by Victor Piollet, whose family members were among refugees who came to the area of Bradford County now known as French Asylum, during the French Revolution.

See Thursday’s print edition of the Rocket-Courier for more coverage.

 

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