Cold Springs School (2)

The city hopes to take ownership of the Cold Springs School.

The Highland Rim Historical Society is one step closer to conveying the ownership of Cold Springs School to the City of Portland.

HRHS is no longer able to maintain and ensure the preservation of Cold Springs School and voted at its March 21 meeting to convey the school with the city's approval. The city council voted on July 1 on first approval to accept ownership of the school which sits on city property at Richland Park.

Under the agreement the HRHS will continue to be responsible for the maintenance of the historical content of the building, provide volunteers to open the building to the public at various times, keep historical information up to date, promote the school and its history, and provide society members on a joint board with the city.

The city will be responsible for the maintenance of the school and grounds, supervision and prosecution of acts of vandalism, and provide members from the city to be on a joint board with HRHS. In addition, the agreement states that the school will be for historical purposes only.

HRHS member and Vice-Mayor John Kerley said, “All members of HRHS are grateful to the city for being willing to accept the conveyance and trust of preservation of Cold Springs School.”

Cold Springs is believed to be the oldest historic structure in northern Sumner County and is full of history for the Portland community. It was built on the Thomas Baskerville farm near the cold springs on the farm near Mitchellville. During the Civil War the grounds around the school became Camp Trousdale, a training camp for Confederate soldiers. The building became a camp hospital where Portland’s Dr. William P. Moore, Sr. donated his time treating the soldiers.

The Portland Church of Christ was established at the school in 1866-67 when David Lipscomb held a series of meetings at the school building. Mitchellville Missionary Baptist Church held services at the school in the same era.

James and Judy McGlothlin and William and Penny McGlothlin transferred the title to the structure to the Highland Rim Historical Society to maintain as a lasting legacy to the past. Former student Howard McDowell led the effort to move the school to Richland Park and the restoration of the building. The restoration of the school became a part of the city’s Bicentennial Community Program during 1975-1977.

HRHS received grant money during this time from the American Revolution Bicentennial Administration and the Tennessee American Revolution Bicentennial Commission.

The society and the city have worked together providing the upkeep and maintenance of the interior and exterior and the historic items since the opening and dedication of Cold Spring School on Friday, May 14, 1976.

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