Washington Township Historical Society

Minutes   January, 2007

The Washington Township Historical Society of Stark Co., Inc. held their monthly meeting on January 23, 2007, at the township fire hall. 20 members and 1 guest opened the meeting with the pledge to the flag.

President Marleen Grant told that we will have a display table at the Ruritan Pancake breakfast on Feb. 3, 2007, at the Washington Elementary School. She will be asking for volunteers to man the table for a 2 hour shift, 7-9 and 9-11. We will also have a table at the firemen’s breakfast in March.

Grant advised that she has asked Marge Grimes to cut out from the newspaper any articles pertaining to the township, however, everyone should cut out obituaries of people from the township.

There will be a work time at the society’s room 1 day of the month to enable individuals that can’t come in the evening to help catalog items. We were recently given a large amount of newspapers from 1942 that need to be gone through looking for township items. The first work day will be Wed., Jan. 31st at 9:00.

Jayne Radabaugh Dickinson and Carolyn Caskey reported on visiting the Sebring Historical Society in December at the old Strand Theater. They saw the movie It’s A Wonderful Life and also looked at the numerous displays of artifacts. Dickinson, Caskey and Grant traveled to the Beloit Historical Society last week. Beloit’s Tin Shop makes a great place for the historical society and the program and seeing their artifacts was enjoyed.

Paul Del Puppo stated that he is sponsoring a town meeting on February 12th at 7:00 pm at the township hall. The newly elected state representative Mark Okey will be on hand to tell of the upcoming issues at the state level. Grant also announced that the Stark Co. auditor will be at the Washington Elementary School on January 29th at 7:00.

Many new acquisitions were shown. Pictures from the Fairmount School, Fairmount Grange, Fairmount Festivals and grange plays were given by Dorothy Ramser. Carol Bischel donated school pictures from Fairmount and Washington. Irene Harris gave the society 2 American flags that were handed to her by John W. Bricker, Gov. of Ohio 1939-45, has he traveled past Yeagley’s Corner (St. Rt. 183 & 183 now) on a campaign trail. She also gave a 1947 school picture from Fairmount School.

Roger and Marie Stoudt donated a McCoy’s Market yard stick and an Allison’s Service Station calendar. Ila June Ramser gave two books on plays used at the grange during the time of 1940 to 1950. Tom Erisey gave two pencils, one was from the John Erisey Plumbing & Heating Co. and the other from Charles (Chub) Burns Chevrolet Sales in Maximo.

Mary Cline gave a 1 & 2 room grade school commencement program, an article on Alliance-Lexington Twp. Draft board listing of the men leaving the city. Her grandfather’s name was on the list. She also gave a 1953 Life magazine with her grandfather’s mailing label still on it.

Dorla Becker Moore donated an arithmetic book used at the Maximo school in the late 30’s or very early 40’s. Barb Taylor Boschini gave a picture of the Fairmount Grange Degree team.

The next meeting will be on February 27th at 7:00. The program will be given by those in attendance who will tell of the area where they live. The meeting was adjourned and turned over to Caskey who

introduced the 25th President of the United States, The Honorable Wm. McKinley (Jerry Sandifer).

With Hail to the Chief playing in the background, the president entered the room and shook hands telling a couple of the men that he recognized them from his front porch campaign in ’96. With his scarlet carnation in his label and his top hat he transported the group back in time. McKinley was born in Niles, OH. and lived there until he was 8 or 9 years old. He related a story about an exposition coming to town and it cost 25 cents to get in. He approached his mother and said he really wanted to go. Mom said he could go but where was he going to get the 25 cents to get in. He asked if it would be okay if he collected the eggs from the hens in the back yard and sell them. She said yes that would be okay. When he went out to gather the eggs one of the hens ran out and went over to the neighbors. He realized that it was the neighbor’s hen and he didn’t know how many eggs that chicken had laid so he couldn’t sell them. After telling his mother what happened she said she would give him the 25 cents so he was able to go.

At the age of 9 the family moved to Poland and it was there he received the rest of education. As a teen he loved to debate and he and a friend formed a debate society. After getting a room fixed up and obtaining carpet they were ready for their first debate. The day of the debate there was much rain, and the girls that had helped with the room would not let them in with their muddy shoes. Removing their shoes they went on with the debate. They then became known as the "Barefoot Debate Society".

McKinley was a supply sergeant serving in the Civil War. While at Antietam and under much difficulty he was finally able to get to the front lines with supplies which included food and coffee which the soldiers were in great need of. From then on he was called "coffee Bill".

After obtaining his law degree he came to Canton, OH. and opened a law practice. His first case was given to him by Judge Belden. Many stories were related that the public normally does not hear about the president including the one where a woman thought he was a taxi driver and didn’t realize she was riding with the president until he had her almost home.

Removing his hat and being Jerry Sandifer he talked about the assassination. Sandifer ended his presentation by inviting everyone to the McKinley Monument and the Museum on Sat. January 27th. In honor of McKinley’s birthday an all day celebration will be held. There will be a wreath laying, a Civil War encampment , a 21 gun salute and other activity. The public is invited and admission to the museum is ½ price.

The evening concluded with coffee and cookies and talking with "President McKinley".