Sun shines on Founders Day

October 7, 2023
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By Amanda Rogers

Mansfield Record

The third annual Mansfield Founders Day had a historically beautiful day on Saturday.

The sun shone on the city event, but the temperature only reached 72 degrees, bringing out the crowds to learn about life in the 1800s.

“The weather was beautiful and we had a great turnout,” said Jessica Baber, museum manager for the Mansfield Historical Museum & Heritage Center.

Baber estimated several hundred people attended the free event at the Man House Museum, 604 W. Broad St., the restored home of Mansfield co-founder Ralph Man.

“Our mission is preservation of history and teaching people about the past,” Baber said. “It gives people a unique opportunity to see so many aspects of history.”

Volunteers and professionals demonstrated several activities that would have been common in the 1800s, such as candle dipping, lace making, pottery, blacksmithing, dancing the Virginia Reel, writing with a quill pen, sending a telegram, doing laundry and quilting.

“We’re hoping that people enjoyed themselves and that they learned something about how easy we have it now,” Baber said. “Some of these were really challenging.”

Visitors also enjoyed tours of the Man House Museum, which was built between 1865-1879, purchased by the city in 2017, restored and opened as a museum in 2020.

“We had a lot of people through the house,” Baber said. “We are hoping that people will come back for the full tour. People seemed to have a really good time.”

The Man House Museum is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Admission is free.

Baber said that she would “absolutely do it again” next year. Founder Day is usually the first Saturday in October.

Art Wright, the city's historical preservation officer, presented Dr. Robert Smith, chairman of the Historical Landmark Commission, with an award from the Texas Historical Society for his 35 years of service on the commission.

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Mansfield, Texas, is a booming city, nestled between Fort Worth and Dallas, but with a personality all its own. The city’s 76,247 citizens enjoy an award-winning school district, vibrant economy, historic downtown, prize-winning park system and community focus spread across 37 square miles. The Mansfield Record is dedicated to reporting city and school news, community happenings, police and fire news, business, food and restaurants, parks and recreation, library, historical archives and special events. The city’s only online newspaper launched in September 2020 and will offer introductory advertising rates for the first three months at three different rates.

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