For Jeff and Heather Brigstock, breathing new life into the historic Gallatin Fitzgerald Manor was no small task. However, their impact of breathing life into existing small businesses in Gallatin has proven to be even more rewarding.
Built in the late 1860s by an Irish immigrant, Henry Fitzgerald, who settled in Gallatin, The Fitzgerald Manor still stands at the corner of South Water Avenue and Factory Street. Unique and ornate 19th century period pieces still set this home apart, such as award-winning intricate wood designs, bricks made on-site to erect the home, and the original spiral staircase that leads to the third floor watchtower, or "belvedere" lookout. It's even believed that the Fitzgerald Manor was the first home in Sumner county to have indoor plumbing. In the 160-year history of the home, the Brigstocks became only the fourth owners of the manor. They bought it with a vision not only to breathe new life into a building but to connect people and small businesses in Gallatin. Here, Inside Out Markets serves as an incubator marketplace for those businesses to grow and eventually set out on their own.
While the Brigstocks officially opened Inside Out Markets at the Fitzgerald Manor in 2020, the story for them started five years earlier.
"In 2015, we began selling Wayfair furniture in an old tobacco warehouse here in Gallatin. We've always believed that everyone should be able to have a beautiful home without having to mortgage the farm," Heather reminisces.
In 2018, after volume increased and their concept gained even more traction, they quickly realized they needed more space and purchased what Heather affectionately describes as, "the ugliest self-storage building in Hendersonville!"
It was there that they saw even more demand and gained more attention for their model of bringing quality products at affordable prices to the local public. They continued to partner with local artisans and area small businesses to become a hub for local products and items. In 2020, they quickly realized they were in need of more space and set out to find the perfect, permanent home for what would become Inside Out Markets.
After a beautiful remodel of the Fitzgerald Manor, Inside Out Markets officially opened its doors in October 2020 and has continued to flourish while helping other small businesses grow.
"Partnering with local artisans and helping them develop their products, taking them and creating a plan to grow their business as we grow ours is also a critical part of what we do," says Heather.
In addition to featuring over 45 local businesses, makers and artisans, and hundreds of local products, Inside Out Markets also boasts a coffee shop (The Klatch) and a bakery/cafe (Mary Ella's, which has the best sourdough around!).
"Creating a space where people can do life together, celebrate milestones, and have a community touchpoint has always been an important aspect of what we do," says Heather.
For some, growing a business internally is a measure of success. For the Brigstocks, seeing local products and vendors they work with become successful and eventually venturing out on their own, is how success is defined--a truly unique measure from the inside out.