Lincoln Homestead renovations begin, set to be complete in summer 2021

The outside of the Lincoln Homestead | Photo: WHSV
The outside of the Lincoln Homestead | Photo: WHSV(WHSV)
Published: Jun. 8, 2020 at 6:10 PM EDT
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The Lincoln Homestead, which used to be the home of Abraham Lincoln's great-grandfather, is officially under renovation.

Benjamin and Sarah Bixler, who purchased the Lincoln Homestead, along with their three children and other family members, have been working on the home for a few months.

The family plans to make this their home once they are finished restoring it.

"We're basically starting with kind of the bones of an old house," Sarah said.

Some days, they spend up to 12 hours working on it. Benjamin said there have been a few challenges they have run into, like termite and water damage.

"There's just places where we have to completely take out the old material, as much as we hate to do that, and we're going to have to put in new material because the old material is too badly eaten or too badly rotten," Benjamin said.

There is no source of heat except for the fireplaces and the electricity is original from 1930.

"We need to figure out how to make the walls wider to accommodate heating and cooling and modern systems," Sarah said.

While it will become the family's home, they do plan to share the property's rich history with the community.

"We still want to be able to make it a place where people can visit and learn about the history," Sarah said.

The Bixlers had to cancel a second open house that was scheduled, as well as a Juneteenth educational event, due to COVID-19. They are hoping to reschedule an open house for the fall and to do an event next June 19.

Right now, the family is living on the property in an RV.

"All of us are looking forward to being able to be in this space on the property," Benjamin said.

They are on track for the home to be completed by next summer.

You can follow along with the Lincoln Homestead's progress on

or its