|We now have a local history museum in Mansfield representing the area
in and near Mansfield including Sullivan, Rutland, Covington and more
Visit the History Center on Main Street at 83 North Main Street. We also have a locaton at 61 North Main Street.
Regular hours are noon to 3 T, W Th or by appointment.
by George A. Retan, Ph.D.
Pictures Collected by Chester P. Bailey
Published by The Council of Mansfield Borough 1956
Copyright Mansfield Advertiser 1957
Reprinted on Tri-Counties Site by permission of Chester P. Bailey, former owner of Mansfield Advertiser
The history of the last sixteen years is familiar to most of us. However, the historian of the future, and the generation now classed as "children" will some day want to know what took place in this period.
First in importance was World War II. Mansfield not only contributed more than its share of manpower, but contributed more than its quota in every Ward Bond Sale, Red Cross, or U.S.O. drive. During the years 1942-46 a Service Center was kept open in the southern half of the Bank Block. It was supported and staffed by the citizens. Service men caught between buses, or hitch hiking, could find a bed, or refreshments. The Red Cross Rooms were active with women sewing for hospitals. The local Ambulance Company was one of the early units overseas. At one time it was located near Mansfield, England and the children of the Mansfield, Pa., schools sent seven large cartons of toys and gifts to the children of Mansfield, England. After the war Mansfield, England, sent a gift of music books to our school.
The Memorial Swimming Pool is a symbol of the gratitude of the community for the sacrifice of its youth. Built in 1949 at a cost of $40,000 in money, work furnished and materials donated. It will long remain a monument to the veterans of the two World Wars. Its history is fully set forth in a publication, "Mansfield Memorial Swimming Pool."
During this period the Council carried out many improvements in the Borough. One of the most useful is the new Borough Building just west of the river on Wellsboro Street. Built in 1951, it provides a modern office for the meetings of the Council, as well as a garage and workshop for the Borough Trucks and the men employed. The Council purchased a dump truck in 1950, a tractor and loader in 1948, and new fire pumpers in 1946 and 1956. With the loader and truck it is possible for the streets to be speedily cleaned after a heavy snowfall.
All the streets not under the control of the State Highway Department have been resurfaced in this period. In 1946 the state repaved N. Main Street from Prospect Street to the Borough limits. In 1945 Wellsboro and Sullivan Streets were resurfaced. Many new sewers were laid; a four-foot sewer from E. Main under the railroad in 1943; in connection with the State, a sewer from College Place to Corey Creek in 1952; a sewer from Prospect Street to the Borough limits in 1953; one on fourth Street, in 1952. In 1946, in response to demand of the State, engineers were employed to draw up plans for a sewage disposal plant. Two new bridges were built over Ellen Run, one at Brooklyn Street in 1951 and one on the Hollow road in 1955.
In 1942 the Council set up a Municipal Authority through which the Council could authorize the purchase of the Water System and in 1943 the purchase was consummated. By this act the Council has made it possible to utilize the profits from the system for improvements. Much has been done to this end; reforestation of the water shed, introduction of fluoridation, improvement of the dams, and replacing worn out mains. Herbert Peterson and Oscar Lutes were leaders in this movement.
In 1944-45 the Frozen Food Lockers were built at 38 S. Main Street. At the College a new Science Building was erected 1951-52; in 1951 the old South Hall, oldest of the original buildings dating from 1857-58, was torn down and a modern dormitory erected in 1952; the kitchen was completely remodeled and new storage and refrigerator facilities added; and in 1955 a new Fire Tower was erected at the rear of North Hall. In 1955-56, Webb Rice tore down the old filling station at 50 S. Main Street, and the two old wooden buildings at 15 and 17 N. Main Street and erected a new Post Office building at the frist site and two modern stores at the second.
For a few years, beginning in 1945, the airplane fever hit Mansfield. In September, 1945, a field was opened south of town which was, in 1948, moved to a hill top on the old ore bed road. In 1946 there were seven planes owned locally and air plane breakfasts were the style, staged at various fields in other localities. Garrison and Myers were dealers in planes, and flying lessons were given at the field. In 1949 the field was again moved to its former location on the flat south of Canoe Camp but by 1950 there was little local flying. The increased expense of operating the field led
to its abandonment.
New industries were brought to town through the activities of the Business Men’s Association which bought a tract of land (part of the old Putnam lands) in the southeast corner of the Borough. Here the Armco Corporation erected a large fabrication unit in 1952-53. In 1954 the Association erected a building for the Houghtaling and Oldman, Inc. foundry which had been operating in a small building on the park. On 7th Street, the G. L. F. Cooperative greatly enlarged the 1946 plant in 1949.
In 1946 those lot owners who were interested in the old Oakwood Cemetery revived the organization and sold the cemetery to the Prospect Cemetery Association. This association, out of civic pride, took over the property and proceeded immediately to improve it and to provide an attractive site for future lot purchases.
In 1946 a new franchise was granted the Tioga County Bell Telephone Company and in 1948 the company built a modern "Central" at 56 S. Main Street. By 1952 the Bell System had absorbed the local lines of the old Citizens Telephone Company. In 1954 the Tioga County unit sold out to the Commonwealth Telephone Company of Dallas, Pa.
In 1950-51 new street signs were erected at all street corners. In 1952 scales were installed at the Borough Building. When trucks were suspect to be overweight, they could be checked here by the Borough Police. Parking meters also were installed in 1950. Through the revenue received from these two sources it became possible to hire police for twenty-four-hour duty and to increase greatly the protection to school children going to and from school.
The tax rate on borough real estate was increased to 24 mills in 1942, and cut to 23 mills 1943-1947. After a special election in 1947 it was increased to 26 mills to give increased fire protection, but was cut to 25 mills in 1948, 24 in 1950, 22 in 1951. Following the State revision of assessments it was cut to nine mills in 1955 but raised to 12 mills in 1956.
In 1953 the Tyco Television Company put up a tower, were granted a franchise, and brought a cable to town, making it possible for residents to install televison sets in their homes.
In 1948, C. Morris Thompson constructed an attractive Dairy Bar at 103 W. Wellsboro Street, with a modern pasteurizing and ice cream plant attached.
Doctors: J. J. Moore, Robert Sanford, 1949; Charles B. Flack, 1950; I. R. Vincent to 1948.
Dentists: J. J. McMillan, E. A. Evans, 1946.
Veterinarians: R. J. Lynch, E. E. Barber.
Attorney: Robert E. Farr.