Special to 1808Delaware

The Delaware County Historical Society received a statewide award from the Ohio Local History Alliance at a luncheon on October 7 during the OLHA Annual Meeting. The outstanding achievement recognition was given for the DCHS exhibit – The Journey to Delaware County, located in the Meeker Homestead Museum at 2690 Stratford Road in Delaware. The exhibit was judged on its historical significance, factual and contextual accuracy, organization and design. 

The free, interactive exhibit describes how and why pioneers came west to Delaware in the early 19th century. A covered wagon replica, a store, “Byxbe’s Mercantile,” stocked with supplies for a journey, and the “voice” of Forrest Meeker, describing his journey to the county in 1811 are among the display’s features. The exhibit includes the names of settlers who came to Delaware County before 1825. Visitors are invited to add their own ancestors to the list.

The exhibit is the historical society’s first post-pandemic display, as well as its largest and most comprehensive. About 5,500 people have seen the exhibit since it opened in April 2022.

Donna Meyer, executive director of the DCHS, said the project was a first in many ways.

“It allowed us to use modern technology to fully immerse visitors in the exhibit,” she said. “It was a great partner to our elementary program, ‘Long Ago Days,’ which involves re-enactors to describe the lives of early settlers and native Americans, using tools, furs, crops, artifacts, games and other things.”

The display was funded by the Delaware County Foundation through donations from the Ron Sabatino Family Fund and the Charles H. and Betty J. Sheets Family Donor Advised Fund.

The Delaware County Historical Society is a non-profit organization committed to promoting, preserving and sustaining interest in Delaware County, Ohio, history. In addition to regular educational programming for all ages, DCHS owns and curates exhibits at several historical sites, including Nash House Museum, Meeker Homestead & Museum and the Delaware Historic Jail & Sheriff’s Residence. Learn more, view event and exhibit schedules and find additional museum information at https://www.delawareohiohistory.org/. The organization also operates The Barn at Stratford event venue for weddings, corporate meetings, and other special gatherings. To learn more or to book an event, visit https://barnatstratford.org/.

Photo caption – Exhibit creators – Steve Frazier, Benny Shoults, Roxann Newton.

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