Ferris Thompson Gate Restoration Wins Gold Award

Feb. 23, 2024

The Ferris Thompson Gate, which sits along Prospect Avenue, was restored in 2022 and reinstalled in January 2023. The project has received a 2024 Gold Award for Restoration in the Ernest Wiemann Top Job Contest held by the National Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metals Association (NOMMA). 

The five-month project was carried out by Rob Anderson of Anderson Ironworks based in Oreland, PA, and managed by the Facilities Operations Major Maintenance department. The highly intricate work included rehabilitation of the existing gate and artisanal fabrication of scroll work and vines to restore the original design. 

Read more about the history of the gate and the process of restoration in this 2023 story.  

Built in 1911 as an entrance to the former athletics fields on Prospect Avenue, the Ferris Thompson Gate was donated by track-and-field athlete Ferris Thompson, Class of 1888. The gate is made entirely out of wrought iron which is an uncommon raw material today. Most iron is now produced with steel. Princeton salvaged an old line of wrought iron fence to provide the material for restoration.  

“It’s unique in the industry to be working with real raw wrought iron right now,” Anderson said. “Myself and everyone in the shop were super excited to work on it and be part of it, and we are glad that we were chosen to do the restoration.” 

The Top Job Contest is a peer-judged competition created to honor outstanding work. NOMMA members from around the world compete for awards in 17 categories, including forged and non-forged work ranging from gates and stairs to furniture and accessories. They are selected based on their “creativity and exceptional craftsmanship.”