Crews work to salvage historic Orlando homes before demolition teams move in

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ORLANDO, Fla. —

An effort to save four historic homes near Lake Eola failed, but when the homes do come down, not all will go to waste.

Four homes at the corner of Eola Drive and Washington Avenue were offered up for free, but no one wanted to pay the large sum of money it would cost to move the homes.

One woman had hoped to move one of the houses, but the cost to do so was well more than her $200,000 budget.

Lake Eola Park regular Robert Watler knows the homes he passes on a regular basis will soon be torn down.

"I love the homes. I like the history behind them, and I think that they're beautiful. I'd be sad to see them go," said Watler.

WFTV's Karla Ray got a look inside the homes today with Mark Shuttleworth, the man who is, in his own way, saving the homes.

Shuttleworth, of Florida Victorian Salvage, and his crew have two weeks to save whatever they can from inside.

"When we enter an old house like this, we're kind of in awe of it," Shuttleworth said, referring to one of the homes his crews were working in.

Shuttleworth and his crews have been carefully peeling up the original wood floors and unhinging windows and doors that have antique glass.

Shuttleworth said one thing his group has noticed is the apparent pride put into the craftsmanship in the homes. One piece of the wood floor that was pulled up was signed and dated by the man who put the floors in back in 1914, nearly 99 years ago.

"There will be a lot of materials that can be reused by people here, absolutely," said Shuttleworth.

"Hopefully, between the two groups, us as salvagers, and the demo guys, we'll try to save as much as we can and at least they'll get used for something, they won't just go in the landfill," said Shuttleworth.

Many of the materials from the homes are already available for sale at Shuttleworth's store in DeLand.