- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 17, 2014

JACKSON, Mich. (AP) - The mansion that used to belong to a Jackson philanthropist’s family is receiving nearly $70,000 in federal funds for renovations.

Jackson City Council members voted unanimously Tuesday to allocate the money to the building known as the Merriman House, the Jackson Citizen Patriot (https://bit.ly/1zpw174 ) reported. It used to belong to philanthropist Ella Sharp’s parents, Dwight and Mary Merriman, and is now owned by addiction recovery nonprofit Home of New Vision. Three apartments in the building are leased to recovering addicts.

Restoration work on the mansion will include a new roof and chimneys, asbestos removal and plumbing updates. The funding will come from federal tax dollars in community development block grant funds.

City officials chose to fund the renovations because of the Merriman House’s historical significance in the community.

Sharp is best known for her work in forestry and civic improvement. She died from kidney failure at age 55 on Nov. 9, 1912, leaving much of her property and money to family, friends and civic organizations.

Sharp bequeathed Hillside Farm, which originally belonged to her father, to the city of Jackson. The property is now known as Ella Sharp Park.

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Information from: Jackson Citizen Patriot, https://www.mlive.com/jackson


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