Archive for Winnsboro
Town Hall was filled to capacity — and even overflowed into the hallways — with supporters of the citizen group Friends of Mt. Zion Institute (FOMZI) at Tuesday’s town council meeting.
After nearly an hour and half behind closed doors, council did not make any motion after an executive session. Mayor Roger Gaddy said there would be a work session — with an executive session — in the next seven to 10 days concerning Mt. Zion.
“Hopefully we will have a decision and a proposal we could present at that time,” Gaddy stated. “We’ve been dealing with this issue for a long time and we’re ready for it to be resolved.”
Public outcry from citizens and the special interest group Friends of Mt. Zion Institute filled town hall on Oct. 15 in hopes of saving the historic Mt. Zion building from the wrecking ball.
Former councilman Bill Haslett is in favor of keeping Mt. Zion and does not want to see a part of Winnsboro’s history torn down. “Revitalizing Mt. Zion is something I’ve pushed for for a long time,” Haslett stated. “My support of Mt. Zion is real and I would like to see the town reconsider a decision to tear it down.”
Frustrated by little to zero progress during the three years that Red Clay Development owned the building, Haslett said the town had to pay Red Clay an unspecified amount just to receive the deed to the building back after Red Clay threatened to sue.
In 2006, the town accepted the property from the Mt. Zion Society along with a $108,000 cash receipt. Haslett asked the question, “Where was that money and how come it was not being used to renovate the building?”
I attended kindergarten at this school, so I would very much like to see it saved and renovated. If you would take a moment to “like” the Friends of Mt. Zion Facebook Page as a show of support, I would greatly appreciate it. Contacting the City of Winnsboro to stress the need to save this building would be even more appreciated.
Michael Dodds, MAI
The Mount Zion Institute hasn’t seen a student for 20 years and it shows. There are dozens of broken windows and a leaky roof.
For the last couple of months, there’s been a drive underway to address those problems at the historic property in Winnsboro. But as of last week, supporters of that effort have a new reason to feel optimistic about their chances of success.
It comes courtesy of a Midlands artist who has made quite a name for himself, both in South Carolina and around the globe. And what he has in mind is turning this place back into a school. A place for art education. His name is Dru Blair. From a studio and school located northwest of Columbia, Blair specializes in dramatic renditions of military technology, portraits and products.
He uses a painting technique so precise, it’s sometimes hard to believe the picture you’re seeing is not a photograph.
Last week, Blair told Winnsboro Town Council members he wants to create an art college at Mount Zion.
PS – Please take a moment to check this out. Yes, my mother is helping to drive the redevelopment and I attended kindergarten at Mount Zion…..it is still a great story. You can follow the redevelopment, and even make a donation to help, by clicking HERE .