Kirby Fund helps maintain Kimberly Cabin at FENCE

Published 10:10 pm Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Kimberly Cabin

Kimberly Cabin

One of the oldest structures in Polk County is open and available for touring every day of the year.
The historic Kimberly Cabin on the grounds of the Foothills Equestrian Nature Center (FENCE) is a trailhead for the Blue Wall Passage of the Palmetto Trail and serves as a living history display of the bygone days of FENCE.

The 1860s era cabin was moved onto FENCE property in the 1940s by Jack Kimberly to serve as a schoolhouse for his four children.

Kimberly provided a lovely place for his kids and neighboring children to learn, and his predecessors insured that the cabin would remain lovely forever. This is where Dave Kirby and the Polk County Community Foundation (PCCF) come into the picture. Dave and Adie Kirby and their daughter Katherine had a vision of providing support for the organizations and activities that meant so much to them during their years in Tryon.

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Among many other gifts they made, they provided perpetual funding to enhance and protect the Kimberly Cabin and surrounding gardens.

PCCF is the very competent organization that carries out the directives of the Kirby family. Over the years many groups have benefited from the far sighted support of the Kirby family and the careful granting of funds from the PCCF. FENCE is one of the organizations that benefits. Funds from PCCF paid for the William Price Landscaping Company of Tryon to keep the Kimberly Cabin gardens beautiful, the grass short and the historic Kimberly Cabin on FENCE property in good shape. Recently, Price revealed one of the cabin’s secrets.

“More than 25 years ago I was hired by FENCE to install a sidewalk to the old cabin. Imagine my surprise when workers uncovered a very old, very huge, hand dug water well just off the corner of the cabin! That thing was at least 8 feet across and so deep I could not see the bottom,” Price said. “The well had a concrete block cover with an old electric wooden ram pump to get the water to the surface. All the well apparatus was no good and we pulled the pipe and other pieces out of the well and filled it in. It took more than 100 yards of sand to fill! I have never seen a well that large in my life.”

To learn more about the Kimberly Cabin go to the FENCE Center at 3381 Hunting Country Road, Tryon, or click on To learn more about the PCCF, call 828-859-6122 or click on

– article submitted by Carrie Knox