Watch these genius construction workers move a 220-ton historic house with 700 bars of soap.
· Dec 10, 2023 ·

Sheldon Ruston was hired to move the Elmwood Building in downtown Halifax off its foundations for renovations and development, but that was no easy task.

The Elmwood Building was built In 1826, then additions were added when the house was turned into the Victorian Elmwood Hotel in 1896.

How exactly do you move a near 200-year old building with 100-year old additions off its original foundations?

Ruston says the trick is using bars of soap.

"Didn't use the rollers, we used the soap. Ivory soap gives a smooth of, uh, sliding it.

"700 kicks of Ivory soap."

If you do some quick Canadian to English math, and consider that one kick equals one bar, that's…

700 bars of Ivory soap.

And it apparently has to be Ivory soap because it‘s the softest.

I mean it's gentle enough to wash a baby after all.

Ruston and his company moved the building about 30 feet onto a new foundation to make room for its new owner to add another addition and turn the hotel into an even bigger apartment building.

Just look at this thing:

I can't wait to see what they do to move the whole thing again in another hundred years when it‘s time for the next addition.

In the meantime, you can watch them move the building in the video below.

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