The Heritage Center,
located at 808 South Baker Street, Mountain Home.
Closing for the purchase of 808 South Baker Street was held on July 11, 2012.
From left: Kathy Lueck, Treasurer; Bashan Bradbury of Gilbert Realty; Vincent Anderson, Historical Society President; and Jennifer Baker, Vice President.
Press Release Issued by President Vincent Anderson
The Baxter County Historical & Genealogical Society is pleased to announce the purchase of an historic commercial building located at 808 S. Baker Street. This building was built in 1950 and is listed as part of the Mountain Home Commercial Historical District and was added to the National Register of Historic Places on June 15, 2010. This purchase was made in the vision of moving the Baxter County Archives and reestablishing the museum in a new Baxter County Heritage Center.
In February 2008, Baxter County endured a historic tornado that tore its way through Gassville. In the wake of this destruction, the Baxter County Heritage Museum, also known as the old Rollins Hospital, suffered more loss than the society could repair. The Baxter County Archives collection was transferred to the Baxter County Services Building later that year in a much appreciated partnership with the county. We were blessed to have someone purchase the old building from us in 2010, and we inventoried and packed our treasured relics and put them in storage. Since that time, we have been building the principal and looking for a new home to move in to.
With this purchase, there are repairs and upgrades needed to ensure a safe learning environment and guarantee that our valuable archival and museum collections are properly preserved for the future. The Society is beginning a new fundraising campaign entitled, "Rebuilding Our Foundations," which will be in three phases. This facility will eventually house the museum collection of the Baxter County Heritage Center, which includes the following:
- Historic school records from all 68 school districts in Baxter County, which no longer exists
- Native American collection, including information on the Trail of Tears across Baxter County
- Cotter & local railroad memorabilia
- Rollins Hospital equipment
- Records from old stores & court records
- Military uniforms and pictures of Baxter County military personnel
- Genealogy books & materials from Baxter and Marion Counties
Additionally this new Heritage Center will greatly aid the Historical Society to fulfill its mission, such as:
- Publishing the quarterly journal Baxter County History
- Administering the Baxter County Archives
- Maintaining & giving tours of the Casey House next to the county fairgrounds
- Co-sponsoring History Day with the Mountain Home Parks & Recreation Department every October at the Rapp's Barren historic settlement in Cooper Park
- Providing speakers to schools and organizations at no charge
According to Baxter County Historical Society President, Vincent Anderson, "In the past, our Heritage Museum has been a place for students, visitors, and Baxter County descendants to renew and explore their ties to the past. The members of the society have worked and persevered since the tornado four years ago. This smooth transition was made possible by Bashan Bradbury of Gilbert Realty and Steve Dunn of First Community Bank. With the reestablishment the Baxter County Heritage Center, we believe we are back on track to lending a hand in honoring our pioneers and educating future generations of our Ozark heritage."