Saving Our History To Enhance Our Future
In less than a year the Gate House at the entrance to Smythe Park in Mansfield is looking beautiful. Work began on May 12th, 2021 with the replacement of the old roof. August 31st workers began preparing the area around the foundation for a big lift. By September 3rd, the community watched the 132 year old structure take flight with the support of huge metal beams. Once almost 5 feet above its’ previous elevation, workers could safely build a new block foundation. September 21st the Gate House was settled onto its’ new permanent foundation that raised the building to the elevation of Main Street. In November the initial grading was completed. Finally, in 2021 new shingles were installed on the roof so that the Gate House structure would be ready to see another century in Mansfield.
What’s next for the Gate House project? Brian Barden, Chairman of the Save The Gate House Committee, explained how the project still has a long way to go. “We are eager to raise funds to start the renovation of the inside of the Gate House so that it can be used by the community. We envision small receptions, perhaps local art exhibits, and of course exhibits that share the rich history of the Gate House and Smythe Park. Then we look forward to restoring the brick pillars beside the entrance to Smythe Park. Finally, we can’t wait to be able to install the large metal gates that will welcome the community to Mansfield.”
“Fundraising is always an important aspect of any project of this size”, shared Nan Wilcox, member of the committee. “To complete the project we will need to raise approximately $130,000. In addition to grants that we are applying to, we are planning several fundraising events in 2022. A special event will be the raffle of a beautiful handmade quilt donated by Kathy Barrett, Mayor of Mansfield.”
A website, savethegatehous.org has information about the history of the Gate House as well as the vision and mission of the Save The Gate House Committee. There is also a link to the Mansfield Foundation where donations may be made.
Writing: Deb Bastian
Photography: Deb Bastian
Produced by Vogt Media