Ultimately, Mableton was saved from the wrecking ball by Dr. Jack Leissring, who purchased the dilapidated mansion in 1974 with the intention of restoring it. In that same year, the property was listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Then, in 1977, during the course of the restoration process, a major fire occurred. Most of Mableton’s roof and second floor rooms were destroyed, and the fire burned through the previously intact original main hall ceiling and skylight.
Santa Rosa Fire Department extinguishing fire in Mableton in 1977.
Officially, the house was considered to be nearly a total loss. It was only through the efforts and perseverance of Dr. Leissring that Mabelton would once again regain its historic position of prominence on McDonald Avenue.
Mableton in December 2005.
For more information about the McDonald Mansion and other ROBA projects, visit Rynerson OBrien Architecture's website.