ELLSWORTH: The Hancock County Trustees of Public Reservations (Trustees) are pleased to announce that Alan Baker, for twenty seven years the owner and publisher of The Ellsworth American, has donated $500,000 to the Campaign for Woodlawn. Spurred by a $4 million challenge grant from a private foundation, the Campaign for Woodlawn is the fundraising effort to fund an $8.2 million project that will establish a multi-purpose facility on the 180-acre historic estate in Ellsworth, Maine.
“Mr. Baker’s gift demonstrates his confidence in our project,” remarked Terry Carlisle, president of the Board of Trustees, “and as such, the Board has recently voted to break ground in the spring of 2019 so we can complete the building in time to celebrate Maine’s Bicentennial in 2020.”
According to Woodlawn’s executive director, Joshua Campbell Torrance, “We are very appreciative of Mr. Baker’s gift. He joins the entire Board of Trustees, private foundations, local business and community members who have contributed to this exciting project.” To date Woodlawn has raised just over $6.5 million towards its campaign goal. Mr. Baker’s $500,000 gift is Woodlawn’s largest gift from the local community.
The new facility will provide year-round space, and allow Woodlawn to attract a larger, more diverse audience to the estate. It will allow for the continued growth of the Woodlawn School Programs, which has brought over 5,000 students to Woodlawn, free of charge, over the past several years. The Hancock County community will recognize much needed function and event space, and Woodlawn will gain exhibit space for its collection as well as traveling exhibits from other museums and organizations.
Torrance further remarked, “It is great to have so many people excited about this project, and like Mr. Baker, committed to its success.” To learn more about the Campaign for Woodlawn and to make a gift visit woodlawnmuseum.org.
Woodlawn, lived in by three generations of the Colonel John Black family, is an historic estate consisting of the famous Black House, landscaped gardens, barns, and 180 acres of fields and woods. The house, built between 1824 and 1827, contains its original furnishings and family archives. Woodlawn opened as a historic house and public park in 1929. Today, Woodlawn’s mission is to “offer the people of Hancock County and beyond opportunities for recreation and education on a preserved historic estate, and provide connections to the region’s cultural heritage through programs that arouse curiosity and entertain.” Programs and house tours are offered May through October. The public park is open year-round, sunrise to sunset. Woodlawn is located at 19 Black House Drive (off of Maine Rte. 172), Ellsworth, Maine. For more information visit woodlawnmuseum.org.