Steinbeck House Donation Fund
The House is on the National Register of Historic Places. It is a Queen Anne Victorian style home and has been lovingly restored and maintained.
In order to meet the expenses that arise with every 117-year-old house, the Guild operates a lunch restaurant on the main floor and a gift shop/bookstore in the cellar. The House is staffed by 98 volunteers. Some work in the kitchen, some as servers in the restaurant, and others in the Best Cellar gift shop. There are only three paid personnel ... the chef, the dishwasher and the bookkeeper. Expenses are closely watched and held to the bare minimum.
But the income is simply insufficient. One example: an unexpected $6,000 termite tenting of the 3-story building put a dent in the budget; it takes a lot of $15 lunches to pay that bill.
Now, an even more expensive (and unavoidable) crisis has arisen. The center of the House is supported by eight large posts in the cellar; they support the beams that lie beneath the main floor. Over the years, these posts have gradually begun to sink into the clay soil, threatening the very structure. The experts, who have analyzed the problem and the solution, say that the posts must be removed and replaced onto concrete bases. This project will require the beams (and the house) to be jacked up and supported while the posts are replaced. Just the initial studies have cost several thousands of dollars, and the actual work is well beyond the House's budget. It is expected to take at least a week, during which some of the normal operations will have to be closed further reducing income.
It is our hope that the readers of the country and the world will share our belief that this home should be preserved and that they will be willing to contribute to its future.