Importantly, however, as the industry grew, the need for education also increased. It was Centre Furnace's ironmaster, Moses Thompson, and his business partner James Irvin, who in 1855 donated 200 acres of land to begin the Farmers' High School. Today that school has become The Pennsylvania State University.
The mansion, therefore, holds both industrial and educational symbolism for the region. In addition, as it houses the Centre County Historical Society's offices, library, archives, and rotating exhibitions, it serves as a reminder to the community to maintain its roots with the past.