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The Spring Hill Board of Mayor and Aldermen (BOMA) on Jan. 17 voted 7-0 in favor of a resolution declaring the City's intent to accept ownership of the historic Rippavilla Plantation and associated 98.4 acres.
A Rippavilla Due Diligence Panel - made up of Spring Hill citizens and Rippavilla board members, along with Aldermen Matt Fitterer, Susan Zemek and Jonathan Duda, appointed by Mayor Rick Graham - recommended to the BOMA earlier in January taking over the property to operate as a historic site, park and museum to ensure it's preserved and maintained for generations to come.
The conveyance of ownership is expected to occur in March.
Rippavilla, which sits along U.S. 31, south of Saturn Parkway, includes Spring Hill Civil War Battlefield lands, and a plantation home built by Nathaniel Cheairs in the mid-1800s. It served as both a Confederate and Union headquarters during the U.S. Civil War, and played a notable role in the outcome of area Civil War battles. Under the City of Spring Hill's ownership, the property will be placed under a conservation easement, ensuring the property is preserved for the public's long-term enjoyment and protected from development.
The nonprofit overseeing Rippavilla has 12 employees and annual operating expenses of $275,084. The historic site operates primarily on income from public tours, fundraisers and events.