OHS In the News

Our collections and curators are making headlines!

The latest Columbus Dispatch column from our archaeology curator Brad Lepper:
Old Farmstead’s Garbage is as Good as Any Diary

Joe Blundo plugs our the Society’s Lustron House in his Sunday Column:
Challenge More than a Facade

Our largest historical artifact, the W.P. Snyder, Jr. towboat, is going to dry dock for repairs:
Towboat Restoration Underway

The Sandusky Register has a story about Jackie Mayer and the Transformation exhibit:
Miss America Gown Donated to Museum

Posted in 1950s, archaeology, collections, Conservation and Preservation, Curators, Current News, Exhibits | Leave a comment

Curry’s Uniform Returns to New California

Ohio Historical Marker for New California Presbyterian Church.

Ohio Historical Marker for New California Presbyterian Church.

On October 5, 2013 Jerome Township and the New California Presbyterian Church held a centennial re-dedication of their Soldiers Monument. At the request of Reverend Phillip L. Bougher, Pastor Emeritus of the Church, Ohio Historical Society curators Cliff Eckle and John Haas took collections related to William L. Curry to display at the Church during the commemoration ceremony.

William L. Curry was born in Jerome Township, Union County in 1839. He was a member of the New California Presbyterian Church which held strong anti-slavery views. When President Abraham Lincoln called for volunteers, Curry was among the first to answer the call. He served in Company K of the 1st Ohio Volunteer Cavalry and rose to the rank of colonel.

Among the objects that curators took to New California were his uniform jacket, uniform hat, powder flask, drinking flask, revolver, holster, and haversack. Perhaps the most striking artifact is the uniform hat. You can still see brown stains of dried blood on the brim from a wound Curry suffered. Luckily for him, it was minor. The day he was wounded Curry was also captured by Confederate soldiers, but fortunately was paroled to continue service with his regiment.

Objects and photographs donated to the Ohio Historical Society by William L. Curry.

Objects and photographs donated to the Ohio Historical Society by William L. Curry.

The archival collections included photographs of Curry during and after the Civil War. He continued to serve as a colonel in the Ohio National Guard, and in his later years Curry was the military historian at the Ohio Historical Society. Curry donated his Civil War collection to the Society in 1927, the year of his death.

Soldiers Monument in New California, Ohio originally dedicated in 1913.

Soldiers Monument in New California, Ohio originally dedicated in 1913.

In addition to military service, Curry was a prolific writer and historian. Among his works were the official history of the 1st Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, the history of Jerome Township and the history of Union County. Curry’s books are available in the Archives/Library Research Room on the third floor of the Ohio History Center.

A strong advocate for Civil War veterans, Curry was a member of the Grand Army of the Republic and the Loyal Legion of Union Veterans. Curry delivered a speech at the original dedication of the Soldiers Monument in 1913. Reverend Bougher commented that having Colonel Curry’s collections present at the re-dedication of the monument made Curry’s presence feel quite strong as it had been a century before.

Group of attendees gathered at the base of the Soldiers Monument

Group of attendees gathered at the base of the Soldiers Monument

Cliff Eckle, Senior History Curator

Posted in Civil War, collections, Commemorations, Curators | Leave a comment

Celebrate Electronic Records Day 1010!

SERI_ER_Day_2013The Council of State Archivists (CoSA) is celebrating Electronic Records Day this Thursday, 10.10.  This is a day to raise awareness about the importance of electronic records and the need to properly manage and preserve them.  In honor of Electronic Records Day, CoSA has published “10 Reasons Why Electronic Records Need Special Attention.”

Did you find this post through Facebook or Twitter?  Then check out the Ohio Electronic Records Committee’s Social Media Guidelines and Tip Sheet.  The OhioERC has other electronic records management and preservation guidelines and tip sheets as well, including email, digitization and websites.

Posted in collections, Local Government Records | Tagged | Leave a comment

We Have First Ladies Dresses!

One of the best parts of my job is working with our costume collection. OHS has an extensive collection of men’s, women’s, and children’s costumes that includes everything from baseball uniforms to ball gowns to swimsuits. One of the highlights of this collection is the Ohio First Ladies Collection.

There have been 63 Ohio Governors and almost all were married. The Governor’s wife, known as the First Lady of Ohio, has to juggle many responsibilities and is considered to be a role model for Ohio women. Since 1957, the Ohio Governor’s Residence and Heritage Garden in Bexley has served as the official home of the Governor. The First Lady has traditionally been responsible for renovations and preservation of the residence. Two of Ohio’s First Ladies, Lucy Webb Hayes, wife of President Rutherford B. Hayes, and Ida Saxton McKinley, wife of President William McKinley, also went on to serve as the First Lady of the United States.

Suit worn by Frances Strickland at her husband Ted Strickland's inauguration as Ohio Governor in 2007.

Suit worn by Frances Strickland at her husband Ted Strickland’s inauguration as Ohio Governor in 2007.


The Ohio Historical Society has dresses or suits from almost every Ohio First Lady in the 1900s and 2000s. From the flapper style dress worn by First Lady Mary Donahey, wife of Governor A. Victor Donahey, in the 1920s to a ball gown from the 1990s that belonged to First Lady Hope Taft, wife of Governor Bob Taft, our goal is to collect something from every First Lady.

We recently received this two piece suit owned and worn by First Lady Frances Strickland at her husband Ted Strickland’s inauguration as Ohio Governor on January 8, 2007. The suit is by Cleveland designer, Anne V. H. Click here to watch a video of the inauguration and First Lady Strickland. An accomplished school psychologist, Dr. Frances Strickland continued her passion for children in her role as First Lady, serving as the chair of the Ohio Family and Children First councils. This suit is one of the first examples of 21st century clothing that OHS has collected and will help us tell the story of contemporary Ohio women.

Have you ever met one of Ohio’s First Ladies? Have you ever visited the Governor’s Mansion?

Emily Lang, History Curator

Posted in collections, Curators | Leave a comment

October is American Archives Month

Archives Month Logo

October is the month that archivists in Ohio and across the nation work together to promote the value of the information and services we provide our users. One of our traditional Archives Month activities is for each state to create a poster that illustrates a significant topic that is documented by materials in our archives. For 2013 the Society of Ohio Archivists selected the theme Disasters in Ohio as our poster theme. The poster features images of two of Ohio’s best known and most destructive natural disasters, the flood that covered much of the state in 1913 and the terrifying tornado that hit Xenia in 1974.

SOA Archives Month Poster

Join us at the Ohio History Center for Archives Month programs!

Home Movie Day

Have vintage home movies but no way of showing them? Bring in your old home movies on Saturday, October 19, and our experts will assess the condition and show them for you if possible. Throughout the day, see home movies from our own Ohio Historical Society collections and enjoy hands-on experiences with film and movie technology of the past.

When: Saturday, October 19, 2013 from 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m.

Cost: Free with museum admission

What Happens in the Ohio Historical Society Archives?

At the Ohio Historical Society we document the ordinary and extraordinary stories of Ohioans. Join Liz Plummer, head of Research Services, as she explains how we preserve and provide access historical documents like letters, diaries, maps and photographs.

When: Saturday, October 26 at 2 p.m.

Cost: Free with museum admission

Research Room on the third floor of the Ohio Historical Center.

Research Room on the third floor of the Ohio History Center.

Posted in collections, Current News, Programs, State Archives | Leave a comment

“Just the Basics for Townships” Webinar: October 22

The Ohio Historical Society—Local Government Records Program, which is a unit of the State Archives, is presenting a new “Just the Basics for Townships” webinar on Tuesday, October 22, 2013 at 2:00 pm.  The cost is $20.00 per registration.

“Just the Basics for Townships” will introduce records-keepers to the most up-to-date records management best practices in Ohio, including the procedures for creating and filing records retention schedules and certificates of disposal with the OHS-LGRP.

Key concepts will include:

  • Pertinent Definitions and Ohio Revised Code
  • Township Records Commissions
  • Inventory Preparation
  • Determining Retention Periods
  • Township-Specific Issues
  • The RC Forms (RC-1, RC-2, and RC-3)
  • Procedural Changes
  • Storage/Environmental Considerations

After registration you will be sent information on how to access the webinar.  The instructions also include a quick and automatic test that ensures you can access the webinar from your computer.  It only takes a minute or town and has instructions for trouble-shooting.  The test is required in order to access the webinar.  Please contact Elizabeth Schultz if you do not receive login instructions within a week of registering.

You can register for this webinar online at the Ohio History Store by clicking on “Workshops,” then “State Archives Workshops,” and finally on “Just the Basics Webinar.”  The Ohio History Store only accepts credit card payments.  You can also return the bottom of the attached flyer to me (via email, fax, or postal mail) with a check or indicate that you would like to be invoiced.

Important Information:
Date: Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Time: 2:00—3:00 pm
Cost: $20.00

Please register by Friday, October 18, 2013

Please contact Elizabeth Schultz at eschultz@ohiohistory.org or (614) 297-2572 if you have any questions.  Faxes should be sent to (614) 297-2546 Attn: Elizabeth Schultz.

Posted in Local Government Records, OHS Resources | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Meet Jackie Mayer, Miss America 1963, at the Ohio History Center

Meet Jackie Mayer, Miss America 1963, at the Ohio History Center

Jackie Mayer of Sandusky, Ohio, who won the Miss America Pageant in 1962 and served as Miss America 1963.

Jackie Mayer of Sandusky, Ohio, who won the Miss America Pageant in 1962 and served as Miss America 1963.


Join Sandusky native and former Miss Ohio and Miss America Jackie Mayer in a discussion about her fascinating life. She will tell the story of her transformational rise to fame in 1962, when she was crowned Miss America 1963, and the life events that led her to stay in the public eye.

The dress worn by Jackie Mayer when she was crowned Miss America 1963 and her Miss America crown in the exhibit are part of the new exhibit Transformation at the Ohio History Center. It will be open through March 30, 2014.

Date: Sunday October 6, 2013
Time: 2 p.m.
Location: Ohio History Center, Columbus

Free with Ohio History Center museum admission: $10/adult; $9/senior (60+); $5/youth (6–12); Free/Ohio Historical Society member; Free/child (age 5 and under).

Posted in Current News, Programs | Leave a comment