Garfield House protest: Online petition, video and blog (Updated)

by Beth Melo on July 17, 2014

Post image for Garfield House protest: Online petition, video and blog (Updated)

Left: A new website dedicated to saving the Garfield House (aka Burnett House)

If you need a little shot of idealism, look to the youth in town.

A 14 year old is prodding residents to become activists for the preservation of town history.

As I posted earlier this week, Bridget Brady is leading a protest with friends against the demolition of the Garfield House.

Encouraged by the response, Bridget’s friend Jen Fox started an online petition. They now have a dedicated site with Bridget’s protest blog.

You can support their efforts by signing the petition and/or joining her protest in front of the property.

Southborough Access Media  filmed an interview with those involved:

Updated (7/17/14 1:10 pm): Bridet’s mother, Christa, informed me that the petition was started by Jen Fox.

1 beth July 17, 2014 at 12:19 PM

Quick update –
Media outside of town has started to take notice.

I just learned that Bridget has been interviewed today by WBZ and Channel 3 Worcester. The Boston Globe is also expected to come by today.

2 Rebecca Deans-Rowe July 17, 2014 at 1:25 PM

It is so uplifting to see these young people working to save Burnett House. I have signed!

I have also started a simultaneous petition with the specific request that demolition be delayed to allow concerned residents the opportunity to find an alternative. I am hoping to reach a slightly different audience with this petition and double our influence.

Please consider signing them both.

http://www.change.org/petitions/friends-of-burnett-house-save-this-grand-and-historic-home-from-demolition

3 Catherine Weber July 17, 2014 at 1:27 PM

A few years ago, when the Garfield House was up for auction, I had a dream. The dream involved renovating the house and creating a Creative Retreat Center, where artists could come to take classes, to paint, write, compose and choreograph. Where there were exhibitions, concerts, performances, and open mic events.

There would be rooms to stay in, amazing community meals, and opportunities for residencies. There are models all around the world where these programs are successful and support a vibrant arts community, which is much needed in Southborough. With an affluent population and educational institutions in our town, there are so many possible scenarios to turn this terrible situation into a huge benefit to our town and surrounding community.

I’ve had so many people tell me that we should make it happen, but the reality is, it takes more than a dream. I have considered a Kickstarter campaign, and/or a plea to Fay or St. Mark’s Schools, or some of our large local corporations for help. I wonder at the reality of my dream. As we see the imminent threat of demolition, can we find a way to use our energy to make this a place more than a historical landmark, but one that takes us into the future, and perhaps contributes and transforms our town?

I hope so.

4 David Cote July 17, 2014 at 3:53 PM

I am so proud of Bridget and her supporters organizing this grass roots effort. Glad to see that they are raising the visibility of this cause.

5 Deirdre July 18, 2014 at 6:09 AM

Very nice interview, Bridget! Good luck!

6 Virginia Parish July 21, 2014 at 10:37 PM

I am writing from as far away as Australia to support your efforts to save this magnificent home so important to your town’s history. I have an interest in Southborough as the childhood home of the author EC Spykman, who was Joseph Burnett’s granddaughter. I plan to visit the town shortly and would be devastated if the sites connected to her (and which feature in her books in fictional form) were destroyed. Good luck, and I hope more people join in the protest! It is so important to stand up to save heritage sites, once they are gone they are gone forever.

7 The Rev Judy Buck-Glenn July 24, 2014 at 2:39 PM

I am writing from Philadelphia as a long-time lover of the Terribly, Horrible Edie books by EC Spykman. Her childhood home is very much a part of her brilliant, funny, delightful books about her young protagonist, Edie, and it would be a travesty to have it torn down.

8 The Rev Judy Buck-Glenn July 24, 2014 at 2:39 PM

Sorry–That is “Terrible”, not “Terribly”

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