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Museum Happenings April 2023

At the HGSIC, cold winter months are typically used for planning purposes, while the warmer weather is for putting that planning into action. As the transition of the seasons takes place, the Society has hit a tipping point, where the amount of "doing" will increase significantly. The next few months will fly by thanks to the flurry of events and projects that dot the calendar. Fortunately, our dedicated volunteers are ready to take the challenge on and deliver a new take on Indiana County history.

The end of March was busy with the Vietnam Veterans Program and Trivia Night. Both events served as an exciting preview of what the HGSIC’s committees have to offer for the remainder of the year.

This month opens with a book talk featuring Hilary Hauck discussing her new work, From Ashes to Song, which focuses on characters and events tied to county history. The evening will feature a presentation and some Q&A, as well as musical compositions related to one of the main characters in the book. The Society had the pleasure of working with Hilary and Susan Datsko, a descendant of one of the characters, for the program. Susan has also loaned the Society various family artifacts to appear on display for the talk. This event is free to attend and will take place Thursday April 13 at 6:30pm. I encourage you to attend the talk and learn more about this fascinating story.

At the end of April, the museum committee plans to install a new rotating family history exhibit, featuring a prominent historic county figure and their ancestors. Each display will contain a wealth of history and images and will take up a sizable space in the alcove of the art wall. The first notable figure for the display will be Harry White and his family. as they are steeped in local history and military tradition, there will be plenty to learn about this pillar of the early Indiana Community. New families and individuals will be highlighted on a quarterly basis, with the general design of the space remaining the same.

The Society is fortunate to have "The Circus" in its collection. The circus is a massive display hand crafted by local Paul McGregor and is a 3/4" to 1' scale replica. It has been over a decade since the circus was previously set up, and it is time for the exhibit to be seen again. Volunteer Gene Decker has been hard at work providing his expertise in preparation for the circus display. He has spent time meticulously assembling each cart and identifying all the pieces in the collection.

Another Victorian Ladies Tea is coming to the Clark House on May 20 from 2pm to 4pm. Mary Jo Bowes is at it again, crafting a wonderful program for those in attendance for the afternoon. “The Wisdom of Dorothy Parker and Other Wits” will be filled with zingers, poetry, and short readings. As always, there will be a hefty supply of tea and pastries, as well as the addition of freshly brewed coffee courtesy of Café Amadeus. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online or in person.

The submission period for the Library Assistant position is now closed. The Society is in the process of reviewing the applications, setting up interviews with potential employees, and hopefully filling the position before next month's post. The Society has hit a wall in its growth, with volunteers and current staff unable to handle the many requests being submitted within a timely manner. The Library Assistant will help to answer these queries, facilitating further growth.

Bill Black has put in many hours in the Clark House since starting as a volunteer in the new year. Bill is the former archivist at Seton Hill University and brings a wealth of knowledge regarding document care and preservation. Bill has come across some interesting treasures, as well as other pieces which are cheap mass productions which contain no historical relevance to Indiana County whatsoever. Material is being meticulously cleaned, sorted, and cataloged with each passing week. This is freeing up shelf space, as well as bringing greater control over the collection and making it more relevant to the Society's goals and the county's needs.

The tremendous growth the Society has witnessed in the last few years is thanks to an incredibly motivated group of volunteers who selflessly give their time and energy to make all the Society does possible. The proverbial roadmap indicates that additional help is required to maintain that course. If you are interested in volunteering fill out our volunteer application. If all goes well, there is a good chance there will be another addition to our team, expanding the Society’s ability to serve the public and spread information about Indiana County’s past.

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