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J.A. Garfield Historical Society News

Garrettsville - The James A. Garfield Historical Society met on April 21, 2014 in the historic Mott Building for a full slate of official business and some interesting highlights.

Ed Perdian made a cameo appearance to propose  an activity  that the group might consider offering during SummerFest this year: a tour of historic homes in the village via horse-drawn Amish surreys.  This  elicited considerable interest and discussion of insurance, scripted information and permission of organizers.  More to come.

Pam Montgomery described the #GarrettsvilleStrong project which she has undertaken, seeking memories of the destroyed Buckeye Block from everyone in the community.  Broad outline of the project include the history of the structure, memories specific to the location, the fire event itself, recovery.  Advertising opportunities will be available to help defray the costs.  Submissions may be sent to Nelson United Methodist Church, Box 210, Garrettsville, OH 44231.

Changes to the organization’s by-laws were voted on and approved.

The Christmas Walk is coming.  Maureen See will be organizing and overseeing the craft show.  The location is still uncertain but the Village Hall is the hoped-for  venue.  Sites for the Walk itself were announced : The Countryman home in Rolling Meadows, the Kontur home on the State Route 303, the Renner home on South Park  Blvd., the Kissel home on St. Rte 82.  Nelson United Methodist Church will be the featured house of worship this year, in honor of the celebration of their bicentennial (Actual celebration will take place in July; they’ll probably be baking from then until November).

The next big event this spring will be the dedication of the new historical marker(sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it?) to be held on Wednesday, May 14 in the Iva Walker Auditorium at 6:00 p.m.  All manner of local and regional dignitaries will be on hand, from the newly-chosen president of Hiram College Lori Varlotta, to congressman David Joyce, to retiring Hiram College president, Thomas Chema ,to local-girl-made-good State Representative Kathleen Clyde, to James A. Garfield Local School District superintendent Ted Lysiak AND the Garfield Marching Pride and re-enactors of the Last great Train Robbery in the United States, which the marker commemorates.  The Nelson UMC will be providing refreshments for the gathering. It will be an evening.  The public is invited.

Next open house at the Mott Building will be on May 3 from 10:00 to 2:00.

A DVD, maybe two of them, is in the works as a fundraiser for the society and #GarrettsvilleStrong, featuring  video by Rich Teresi and with help from Carlson Funeral Homes and Crematory Services.

Gene Semplak and Joe Fry were credited and thanked for refurbishing the historical society’s sign, which was approaching antique appearance itself.

There have been fourteen applications for the James A. Garfield Historical Society scholarship award ($500).  Selection will be made in time for the Awards Day at the high school.

Donations were accepted :  a framed letter from Orson E. Ott to the reunion class of 1957, books and papers belonging to the late Thelma Paul from Roetta Moore, newspaper clipping from Stephanie Byrne, historical pictures.

The meeting closed with a reading /history lesson by Edith Sampson recounting impressions of a tour of the Buckeye Block in 1999.  Where’s the water tank now?

 

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