“home of the first traffic light!”
"Our museum was started to reconnect people to our community and its past. We recognized that in order to have a vital community, people that live there have to have a strong sense of community and one of the ways to do that is to reinforce pride in community. That is what our museum is all about. We are recapturing and honoring past achievements of a rural community. We are preserving artifacts that are the physical manifestations of these achievements. We are using these artifacts and this information to reconnect with residents and even people that no longer live here so they can be active resources in helping our community solve problems. We are using these items to challenge our children to follow their own dreams. We do not want old buildings to just be objects for vandalism. We want kids to know what older buildings represent and why they exist. We want them to honor and respect the past. We want them to be excited by national and world history when they learn about their connections to that history." In 1975, the University of Cincinnati found that the people of Ashville had one of the lowest communal identity scores in Ohio. That is people did not generally know much about their history or care about preserving local history. By 1982, Ashville had one of the highest commitment to local history and preservation scores ever recorded. What happened? Our museum happened. The train station restoration happened. The historical cartoon slide show happened. Charlie Morrison, Jack Lemon, Bronson Kitchen, Herman Petty, Charles Cordle, Margarite Brokaw, Rodger Southward, Georgia Dore, Iona Hines, Bob Knode, Emerson and Katie Dum, Ethel Siegle, Mary Reed, Raliegh Featheringham, Jim Moody, Larry Toole and a ton of other people stepped forward and made a difference. When community development researchers at Ohio State wrote that "no community has come so far", they are utterly amazed that Ashville residents have a nationally recognized museum that has a budget that is less than $10,000 a year. They cannot believe that local people were able to mount campaigns to build a state-of-the-art library, a home for elderly, new school buildings, new fire station, scholarships, and more when just a few years ago they were called a dying community. They stand in awe of what has been done by the volunteers who care about Ashville and its heritage.
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- Tue - Fri: 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
- Sat: 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
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