Located in New Carlisle, Ohio
838 E High St, Springfield, OH
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Located in New Carlisle, Ohio
Richards Raff and Dunbar Memorial Home / Trostel, Chapman, Dunbar and Fraley FH | Springfield OH funeral home and cremation The Richards, Raff & Dunbar Memorial Home, located at 838 E. High St., Springfield, Ohio, is truly one of the most outstanding homes in the city, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The construction process took almost four years before being completed in 1888 as the personal home for American industrialist and two-term Ohio Governor Asa S. Bushnell. Bushnell, who was Ohio"s 40th Governor, was a dedicated family man who chose to conduct much of the State"s business from his home in Springfield, in order to be able to spend more time with his wife Ellen Ludlow Bushnell and their three children.
Upon his second election to the Governorship, Bushnell gave his inaugural address from the massive front porch of the High Street Mansion. After Asa Bushnell"s death in 1904, his wife eventually sold the mansion to a prominent Springfield physician, and the mansion remained in the physician"s family until the Depression.
The mansion then stood unoccupied for almost ten years before being purchased by a young man from Lawrence County, Ohio, Austin Richards. Richards had come to Springfield to serve his Funeral Director"s Apprenticeship with a local funeral home. He liked the area, and decided to stay. Richards and his wife, Isabelle, opened their first funeral home on W. High St., near the Masonic Temple, but knew they would need a larger home for the funeral business.
They purchased the Bushnell Mansion in the mid 1930"s, and after almost two years of preparation – doing most of the work themselves - they opened Austin Richards Memorial Home, and the mansion has remained a funeral home ever since. Upon Mr. Richards" death in 1978, Isabelle sold the funeral business to Austin"s long-time business associate, S. Frederick Raff, and the firm became known as Austin Richards & Raff Memorial Home.
Raff and longtime friend Ted Chapman of Trostel-Chapman Funeral Home in New Carlisle, Ohio, then merged the two funeral homes on January 1, 1984. Raff and Chapman retired on January 1, 1989, and funeral home partner Rick Dunbar became President of the firm. The Springfield location is now known as Richards, Raff & Dunbar Memorial Home; the New Carlisle funeral home is known as Trostel, Chapman, Dunbar & Fraley Funeral Home.
For owners Rick and Anne Guyton Dunbar, maintaining the mansion has been a labor of love, and they are dedicated to maintaining the beauty and the integrity of the home and all its splendor. In the mid-1990"s, they completed a $1 million restoration project of the mansion, and as the mansion is on the National Register of Historic Places, the materials, design, and methods used in the restoration had to be done in the same manner in which the home was originally constructed.
With careful searching, they found talented craftsmen who were able to complete the restoration using original and custom-crafted materials in order to maintain the integrity of the mansion. They were awarded the Community Beautification Award for Preservation for their efforts.
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