Blacksmith Creates Decorative Iron Grill for Folklife Center Entrance

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Those driving by or visiting the Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center on the shared main campus of Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community & Technical College may have noticed a new addition to the entrance of the building.

The decorative iron grill work installed at the entrance of the Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center during the fall 2012 semester was designed and executed by Greg Bray, Master Blacksmith and Executive Director of Pricketts Fort State Park.

The iron grill is a representation of several ethnic styles of ironwork. The top, or gable end, is representative of Pennsylvania Dutch (German) folk art, which is seen within the two mirror images of the folk art birds (which means happiness). The two birds are supporting the Folklife Center folk art logo, which in itself is representative of an Appalachian quilt design. 

The bottom third of the grill work is all scroll work of English origin, including the middle element, the heart (which means love).

The Grand Opening Celebration of the Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center, on the shared main campus of Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community &Technical College, was held on Oct. 27, 2011. Generous gifts, donations and grants have been applied to the adaptive reuse of the historic properties, on the west side of campus, formerly known as The Colonial Apartments (c. 1941) and The Kennedy Barn site (c. 1903) on the original location of the Michael Kennedy Dairy Farm.

The Kennedy Barn, reminiscent of the Dutch Colonial Revivalist Style, was listed in the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior on July 26, 2006.