History

A BRIEF HISTORY OF FRIENDLY HOUSE

1894     Initial beginning of settlement movement in Mansfield known as the “Peoples Mission”.

1912     Mission reorganized as the “Friendly House Association” and located at 280 N. Main St.

1915     Friendly House provides the first free playground in Mansfield.

1918     Friendly House provides the first free kindergarten in Mansfield.

1920     Friendly House becomes one of the original charter members of the Community Fund (now the United Way)

1922     First English lessons for new Americans in Mansfield given at the Friendly House.

1925     First free baby clinic initiated at Friendly House.

1931-1972     Director Russell Gimbel and Co-Director Mary Gimbel, called “Mr. and Mrs. Friendly House”, devoted their lives to the community center.

1940     Gift of Hull Road property becomes the original Hidden Hollow Camp.

1948-1949     Construction and opening of present Friendly House on North Mulberry Street.

1950     Establishment of permanent Day Care Center.

1951     Gift and establishment of Hanna Road area playground.

1952     First Golden Age Club in city organized at Friendly House.

1960     The new Hidden Hollow Camp established on O’Possum Run Road.  Happy Hollow Camp organized on Hull Road.

1968     Boals Pool constructed at Friendly House.

1972-1974     Pete Battisti, Director of Friendly House

1974-1996     Bernard Dillon, Director of Friendly House.

1985     Warren Rupp Observatory built at Hidden Hollow Camp.

1996-2006     Thelda Dillon, Director of Friendly House

1997     “Bernie’s Playground” built at Friendly House with memorial contributions in memory of Director, Bernard Dillon.

1998     Construction of new lodge at Happy Hollow Day Camp

2007-present     Terry Conard, Director of Friendly House

2017     Construction of Sand Volleyball Pit/Playground at Friendly House

2017     New Waste Water Treatment Plant constructed at Hidden Hollow Camp

2018-2019     Construction of new Barn at Hidden Hollow Camp

2019     Construction of two new cabins at Happy Hollow Day Camp

2019-2020     Construction of new parking lots at Friendly House