NEW ORLEANS -- The historic Beauregard-Keyes House was built in 1876 and was home to Confederate General P.G.T Beauregard and noted author Frances Parkinson Keyes and it is still a tourist attraction.
"The Civil War history through Gen. Beauregard, and then the literary history through Mrs. Keyes," said Ella Camburnbeck, Director of Beauregard Keyes House. "But we have some Mafia history."
Nearly two years ago, the 187-year-old structure suddenly sagged. Crews did temporary repairs, including replacing crumbling mortar between bricks to prevent more damage.
"As you can see in the center hall, the hall is dropping to the right hand side because the support beam that holds up this floor is sinking," pointed out Larry Schmidt, Executive Director.
The main floor support beam needs permanent repairs.
"We're going to strengthen the original historic beam there, then we're gonna replace these temporary columns with steel columns so the termites won't have another free meal," explained architect Robby Cangelosi.
Then tie rods are needed because the front wall is leaning.
"The front wall of the building is actually pushing on into Chartres Street up in here," said Cangelosi.
And the fireplaces are sinking.
"There's no support under these fireplaces, which is part of the structural repairs that we need to do," said Schmidt.
A fireplace is causing part of the building to sag. They are urgently seeking $60,000 right now for permanent stability and throughout the basement.
"We need it now, we need it as soon as possible," said Camburnbeck.
They just bought a window air conditioner for the library when they discovered historic documents crumbling due to mold and humidity. Central air is another $10,000.
For information about donations to help repair the historic Beauregard-Keyes House, call 504-523-7257, or visit their website at www.bkhouse.org.