Last Update: 28 November 2004
Butler Cave, Bath County, Virginia, was discovered by Ike Nicholson in 1958. BCCS was founded in 1968 and thereafter purchased the old Butler farm, which included the farmhouse (known as the homestead), several outbuildings and, most importantly, the entrance to Butler Cave. Various enhancement projects were undertaken over the years, including construction of an outhouse and a shower, adding a porch to the house, and removal of the outbuildings as they deteriorated. All of these were very minor works compared to the renovations carried out largely by Jeff Uhl and Mike Artz in 2003.
The main idea was to build a larger porch and a patio capable of accomodating more people with greater comfort and convenience. The old porch was small with a low ceiling and uneven floor. The grounds around it featured large, uneven sandstone slabs that were excellent for tripping on. When large groups were present, such as after the annual meeting, there were inadequate places to sit down and no way for everyone to get in out of the weather. I would like to have a couple of photos of the old porch and grounds to lead off this page. Can anyone help with this?
The first step was removal of the old porch from the right side of the house and a leanto shed from the near side and a complete regrading of the area. The parking and camping area in the foreground, formerly sloping and uneven, has been terraced. Note the sandstone slabs on the far right, which have been stockpiled for future use on a patio. 19 August 2003. This photo and the one below are not mine. Possibly they came from John Wilson.
The porch floor has been laid and erection of the roof has begun, 10 September 2003.
The completed porch from about the same perspective.
This and all of the photos below were taken by John Sweet on 4 October 2003.
Turning slightly to the left from the previous shot we are now looking at the terraced parking and camping area.
The homestead from below. The porch is free standing so it does not rely on the old building for support.
Below is the view as one enters the Butler property.
Following it’s annual meeting, the BCCS Pigout is just getting underway — the first event to use the new facility.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony with BCCS President Gregg Clemmer and the builders, Mike Artz and Jeff Uhl.
Below, the same trio after presentation of thanks for their good works.
Above and below, celebrations around the campfire. Parts of the old porch were ceremonially burned.
J R S