China Baptist Church gets new sunburst pediments

Dwayne Bickford displaying his handy work. (photo courtesy of Linda Morrell)

submitted by Linda Morrell

Several years ago the Trustees at China Baptist became aware that the smaller sunburst pediments above the front windows and the larger one above the door were in need of repair or replacement. Dwayne Bickford volunteered to take one of the smaller ones down and make a new one. I don’t think he realized the amount of work he was volunteering for, but he got it done. Then last fall he undertook removing and replicating the larger one above the door.

The old, sunburst pediment that needed to be replaced. (photo courtesy of Linda Morrell)

It surely was a labor of love!

We are so blessed to have craftsman like Dwayne Bickford in our church and community. This is what Dwayne said about the project.

The work in progress. (photo courtesy of Linda Morrell)

“I can finally share my latest project. I am in awe of how the craftsman of probably 200 years ago designed and constructed the decorative sunburst pediments at China Baptist Church (and the one over the entrance of the China Village Library). The upper one on the front of the church had reached its end of life and was taken down last summer so I could use the pieces for a template. It no doubt had been refurbished at some point in the past as evidenced by the plywood backing. The green paint behind the plywood shows the plywood was added some time later. The replacement was made just like the original from Maine cedar. I used modern tools, however. I sure can’t wait to meet the original craftsman some day.”

A plaque was placed behind the pediment for future generation it reads, “made in Belgrade Maine by Dwayne Bickford. This Sunburst pediment was remade for China Baptist Church. May 2024.”

The project is complete and was installed last Saturday. Thank you Dwayne and the crew who helped put it back in place. Nelson Farris, Carl McKeil and Brad Bickford. It looks beautiful!

The finished product: The new sunburst pediment in place. (photo courtesy of Linda Morrell)


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