This project is well aligned with the third “awesomeness” identity of Awesome Gloucester requirements, to promote, “Community togetherness and appreciation.” The committee has met with many local businesses to build starting campaign capital through the sale of banners to display on the field. Some of the dozens of local businesses currently investing in the project include Neptune’s Harvest, Annie’s Variety, McGrath Plumbing and Bank Gloucester. The collaboration between local youth, local business, Veteran’s School, members of the neighborhood, and the CAWSL exemplifies the local passion found amongst the Light Up Mattos project and its’ supporters. Through social media outlets such as Facebook, this project has garnered 229 Facebook likes and/or followers. This is both an investment and an opportunity for our community. The area known as the Joseph S. Mattos Field was originally a natural basin with a brook running through it. In the 1840s Nathaniel Webster Sr. dammed the brook creating a pond. In the winter he cut the ice from the pond to supply the fishing fleet. Around 1900 his son, Nathaniel Webster Jr., sold the business to Cape Pond Ice Co. In 1924 Cape Pond Ice Co. sold the property to the city for a public recreation area. Later, the city built Veterans Memorial School adjacent to the field. Mattos Field was dedicated to the memory of Joseph S. Mattos in 1935 and has served Joseph’s memory well. Joseph grew up at 6 Linnett Place in Gloucester. At 16, he knew he wanted to join the Army, and so he fought with Company G of the 8th Massachusetts Infantry. He served more than two years before he was killed in action as a member of Battery A, 5th, U.S. Field Artillery, the day after his 19th birthday. He was one of the youngest men to lose his life in World War I. Now, it is a new time for the field and the neighborhood and it is time that groups like ours, the Light Up Mattos Committee and our supporters bring the field into a new era of enjoyment.
Funded by Gloucester, MA (September 2014)