The site planners did not want to demolish the old cabin. Instead, they decided to carefully disassemble the home. In this way, they could study details of its construction, salvage original materials that seemed to be in good shape, and protect the fireplace. Deconstruction began in the Autumn of 1958.
A New Foundation
The new structure would be reconstructed on top of the site of the former Vance house. The site planners used remnants of the original foundation, such as stones in the corners, and the original fireplace to guide building efforts. Workers used a tractor to dig a new footing.
Workers poured cement into the footing to establish a new foundation. They then placed stones around the entire perimeter of the base, probably to cover the foundation from sight, as cement was not an old cabin-building material. However, builders during David Vance's lifetime would have used stone to lift their cabins off the ground, away from moisture and insects, to increase the structure's longevity.