MAHS Fundraising Campaign – “Pay Down the Mortgage”
The Manchester Area Historical Society began a new fundraising campaign in 2019, with the goal of paying off our mortgage on the Kingsley-Jenter House as soon as possible. This will release funds to allow expansion of our museum, archives, educational and research programs.
The Society purchased the former Borek-Jennings Funeral Home at 302 E. Main (NE corner of Main St. and M-52) in December 2015 for $225,000, and has been repurposing this historic building into our headquarters, archives, museum and community meeting place under the name “Kingsley-Jenter House” since that time. As the home of the MAHS, the “KJ House” hosts community meetings and events, educates children and adults on our past, and is an important contributor to the strong historical research interest and genealogy requests now occurring in our area. Most importantly, however, its prime location on our “four corners” intersection is a visible symbol of our history, our pride and our community. Now we ask your assistance in securing its value for generations to come.
MAHS purchased the house in 2015 utilizing internal funds and generous donations from the community as the down payment. Our initial community fundraising campaign, entitled “Preserve the Corner”, raised $68,000 in cash and future pledges, and assisted with the down payment, closing costs, and immediately needed fixes on the building. We secured a mortgage through Ann Arbor State Bank for $180,000 to complete the purchase. Our second fundraising campaign was sponsored through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, utilizing their “Public Space/Community Place” crowdfunding program, and raised $43,000 locally which was matched by a $40,000 grant from the MEDC.
This PSCP grant allowed us to complete major structural and finishing renovations to the KJ House, including roofing, flooring, heating and cooling, electrical, painting, lighting, restrooms, galley area and furnishings. We have redesigned room layouts, built our historical museum, opened a gift shop, and installed audiovisual equipment. Refurbishment and rental of the second-floor apartment in the KJ House has assisted with the monthly mortgage payment. We host regular meetings of several community organizations, as well as private events, who provide a “use donation” to assist with regular operating costs.
We now seek to ensure our long-term goals through a new fundraising initiative, with the goal of “Paying Down the Mortgage” principal in its entirety as soon as possible, and releasing other revenue for historical projects in the years to come. Our current mortgage balance as of October 2019 is $150,000, which reflects $10,000 in PDTM donations to date. We are reaching out to individuals, businesses and foundations who wish to assist us in this specific task of paying off this mortgage balance and securing our future. We invite you to visit us at the KJ House to see what has been done here! A donation form is attached to submit your contribution. Donors will be recognized on a plaque in the KJ House. Donations can be made to: MAHS, P.O. Box 56, Manchester, MI 48158 (Please indicate “PDTM” on the donation). Let’s make this our most successful campaign yet!
Click on the link below to download the Fundraising Donation Form. Thank you.