• Last modified 90 days ago (Dec. 20, 2017)


Rescued birdbath now Christmas décor

Staff writer

When Sue (Bartel) Wadkins of Goessel was growing up in Hillsboro, the house she lived in was the former Adolph Schaeffler house built by his father, William, at First and Jefferson Sts. as a wedding present for Adolph and his bride.

Near an acorn tree at the end of the driveway stood a birdbath that was placed there when the house was built. It was a twin to the one that soon sits in front of the Schaeffler House Museum at Grand Avenue and Jefferson Street.

Copper tubing connected the birdbath to a nearby water hydrant. Wadkins would turn the L-shaped handle on the hydrant to release water into the birdbath and shut it off.

She was 17 years old when her parents sold the house. Years later, Glenn and Margaret Schattak owned the home. Then, as they were planning to sell the house and Wadkins was helping them get ready for the sale, she found out they were going to send the birdbath to the trash.

“Over my dead body,” Wadkins said.

She and her husband, Michael, put it in their pickup and took it to their home in Goessel.

Wadkins said the neighbor kids often played with balls in their yard. She was afraid the antique birdbath would be damaged, so she took it inside.

Now filled with sparkling Christmas ornaments, the ornate birdbath is a nostalgic reminder of those pleasant days spent as a youngster in Hillsboro.

Last modified Dec. 20, 2017