Ypsilanti Historical Society Board/Members

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Fall 2006,
Fall 2006
Original Images:

Board of Trustees:

Virginia Davis-Brown
Ward Freeman
Kathryn Howard
Gerald Jennings
Jack Livisay
Karen Nickels
Maxe Obermeyer
John Pappas
Alvin Rudisill
Diane Schick
Bob Southgate

Museum Advisory Board:

Virginia Davis-Brown
Kathleen Campbell
Grace Cornish
Midge Fahndrich
Kathryn Howard
Dorothy Humphrey
Jack Livisay
Karen Nickels
Joy Shulke
Bob Southgate
Nancy Wheeler

Archives Advisory Board:

Margaret Best
Morrell Boone
Maria Davis
Gerald Jennings
John Pappas
Gerry Pety
Marcia Phillips
Hank Prebys
Jane Schmiedeki
Lisa Walters

Endowment Fund Advisory Board:

Peter Fletcher
Ward Freeman
Paul Kuwik
Dan Maloney
Jack Minzey
Karen Nickels
Maxe Obermeyer
Steve Pierce
John Salcau
Susan Rink
Alvin Rudisill

Ypsilanti Historical Society

220 North Huron Street
Ypsilanti, Michigan 48197
Telephone: 734–482–4990
www.ypsilantihistoricalsociety.org

From the President's Desk

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Summer 2006,
Summer 2006
Original Images:

Author: Alvin E. Rudisill

The Museum and Archives have been very busy the past few weeks. Last week more than 400 visitors toured the Museum and the number of visitors who do research in the Archives is increasing each month.

We are still in the process of negotiating with the City of Ypsilanti to purchase the museum and archives property at 220–224 North Huron Street. The purchase of the property by the Society would enable us to expend funds on deferred maintenance to the buildings and property. Any such agreement would include a “Right of Reversion” clause so that if the Society stopped using the property as a museum or archives the City would have the right to buy back the property at the same price it was sold to the Society. We are all interested in preserving the historical artifacts and written records of the people and places in Ypsilanti and the surrounding area and the transfer of ownership of the property to the Society seems to be a win-win situation for both the Society and the City. We hope these negotiations will result in a successful agreement.

A proposal was made to Eastern Michigan University to assign two graduate interns from the Historical Preservation Program to the Society. I am pleased to report that EMU President Fallon has approved the proposal and beginning July 1 we will have two twenty hour per week interns working in the Museum and Archives. This will allow us to make significant progress on our collection and preservation efforts. In addition, we are discussing the possibility of increasing the number of hours the Museum and Archives will be open each week. It may be possible to increase the number of open hours of both facilities from nine hours per week to as much as twenty-eight hours per week by using a combination of interns and volunteer docents.

Our sincere thanks to our advertisers and sponsors who make possible the publication and distribution of the “Ypsilanti Gleanings.”

Finds--The Fletcher White Archives

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Spring 2006,
Spring 2006
Original Images:

Author: Gerry Pety

Every once in a while you come across something that at the time it was produced was truly unappreciated or recognized. Such it was with a very striking photograph taken many years ago, sometime in the late 1930's or early 1940's. It was taken by what appears to be a “medium format” camera. A camera that either used a fairly large photographic plate of glass or one that used a very sensitive lens with high quality film of the period. In whatever case, the picture was captured by a Mr. Russell Steere, a neighbor of this 219 South Huron Street house address. The Steere family lived at 309 South Huron Street when this picture of a wintry scene was taken over 60 years ago.

Every once in a while when this picture is accessed by researchers in our “address file” at the archives, people ask if a copy of it is available. It is reminiscent of an Ansel Adams photograph in that it captured on film an instant in time that passes so quickly that we rarely stop to take notice. Seems that Mr. Steere did notice both the composition and effects of direct and reflected light, to stop what ever he was doing, and capture this alluring picture that is truly frozen in time for us to enjoy these many years later! If you should like to view the original or desire a copy, it is available. We can make an exact duplicate of the original at the Fletcher-White Archives for the astoundingly price of only two dollars.




Picture taken by Mr. Russell Steere in the 1930s or 1940s.

Report from the Museum Advisory Board

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Spring 2006,
Spring 2006
Original Images:

Author: Virginia Davis-Brown and Kathryn Howard

Even though the Museum was closed during January, the Museum was very busy. The exhibits all had to be changed, the Christmas Holiday decorations were put away and it was a good time to inventory “throw away and save.” Also, we conducted one tour during the month.

We thank Irene Jameson for lending her wonderful collection of small lamps to the museum for display. Most of us never realized there were so many different kinds. It is people like her who are willing to share their display that help make the museum so interesting.

One of the four new exhibits arranged was the new Underground Railroad exhibit featuring the Aray Family generations, Starkweather home, Day, Harwood farms and many others. What chances they took! Would we be willing to get involved today?

The upstairs showcase features a display of beautiful antique china and crystal. The display of antique china hand-painted French plates are from the Michael Miller Collection.

The antique amethyst fruit dishes are from our own collection coming from the Babbitt Collection given by Mr. and Mrs. Courtland Sneiker several years ago. The beautiful ambedina pitcher and the other pitcher of cranberry glass are from Mrs. Helen Marshall. Plate and cup and saucer china are all from our collections. The bobbin lace pieces were made by Kathleen Campbell.

The two glass tables on the first floor contain an exhibit of leather postcards and a collection of fountain pens, both from Kathryn Howard's Collection.

The Interurban showcase now features a piece of rail from the tracks on Washington Street dug up when the City redid the street in 2004–2005. These exhibits were all assembled by Karen Nickels and Kathryn Howard. The Valentines of Ellen Gould were displayed during February for the Quarterly Meeting. We are now looking forward to the Art Show during April 6–23. The “Art Show Open House” will be held on April 9 from 12:00 noon to 4:00 pm. Thirty-one artists have been invited to display their art. We look forward to a wonderful show as in previous years.

“Lost Ypsilanti Speaks” will start on July 16 and run through August 6. This year we will feature all new sites. The Quilt Exhibit is a few months away but why not get it on your calendar now so you won't miss it! Last year we had over 100 quilts on display. Dates for the quilt exhibit are September 28 through October 15. If you have a quilt and would like to display it please contact us.

We are still in need of Docents. If you can spare 2–3 hours per month we will train you. You will have the opportunity to meet some interesting people from all over the world.

Several tours have been scheduled through April. Our new Tour Chairman is Nancy Wheeler.

June 3rd is our Yard Sale, so please bring your ‘treasures' to the Museum. On or after June 1st you may drop them off at Bill and Karen Nickels' at 311 N. Wallace Blvd. where the sale will be held. Thank you, Bill and Karen. You can see the Museum has been busy and we welcome back the ‘Snow Birds’.

Ypsilanti Historical Society Board/Members

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Spring 2006,
Spring 2006
Original Images:

Board of Trustees:
Virginia Davis-Brown
Ward Freeman
Kathryn Howard
Gerald Jennings
Karen Nickels
John Pappas
Alvin Rudisill
Diane Schick
Bob Southgate

Museum Advisory Board:
Virginia Davis-Brown
Kathleen Campbell
Grace Cornish
Midge Fahndrich
Kathryn Howard
Dorothy Humphrey
Jack Livisay
Karen Nickels
Joy Shulke
Bob Southgate

Archives Advisory Board:
Morrell Boone
Maria Davis
Gerald Jennings
John Pappas
Marcia Phillips
Hank Prebys
Jane Schmiedeke
Lisa Walters
Endowment Fund

Advisory Board:
Peter Fletcher
Ward Freeman
Mike James
Paul Kuwik
Dan Maloney
Jack Minzey
Karen Nickels
Steve Pierce
John Salcau
Martha Spencer
Alvin Rudisill

Report from the Archives Advisory Board

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Winter 2005,
Winter 2005
Original Images:

The newly formed YHS Archives Advisory Archives Board has been working for the past several months to develop more efficient daily operations. The Board has had on-going discussions regarding the organizational structure of the Archives and how to best utilize the resources it encompasses. Our first objective was to develop a new loan policy. This policy was revised, presented to the Board of Trustees, and approved at the November meeting. The Archives Board is excited about the implementation of the new loan policy and will continue to work hard to benefit the YHS Archives into the year ahead.










Report from the Museum Advisory Board

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Winter 2005,
Winter 2005
Original Images:

Author: Virginia Davis-Brown

What an exciting fall this has been at the Museum. We were thrilled when we had over 400 visitors see our “Lost Ypsilanti Speaks” exhibit. We have decided that it will continue next year with new sites as well as the old ones. We hope that it brought back some memories and you were able to better understand the history of Ypsilanti.

This year we were able to have the “Quilt Exhibit” again and what a wonderful exhibit it was with 127 quilts displayed throughout the museum. It seemed that every one was different and had it's own story to tell. We want to thank all who were kind enough to lend us their precious quilts. Our special thanks to Sandy Knight for demonstrating the technique of quilt making.

There are two new exhibits now on display at the museum, one is a collection of 54 miniature lamps that were loaned to us from Irene Jameson's collection. They are all different and beautiful. The other is honoring people who served in World War II with a display of uniforms and items of that period. You must come in and see them.

It is a busy time as we have decorated the Museum for the holidays. The Christmas tree is up and all the decorations are in place waiting for the Open House on December 4, from 12:00 noon to 4:00 pm and the New Years Eve celebration starting at 6:30 until 10:00 pm. If you have not spend part of New Years Eve with us before, we invite you to come to our house to enjoy the music, refreshments and visiting with old friends and maybe meet some new ones on the last night of the year.

It has been a wonderful year for all of us and we thank you all for your support, but there is one thing that you can do for us this next year. We are always in need of docents, so if you have a couple of hours a month that you could spare please let us know. You can always call me at 484–0080 or let anyone at the Museum know and we will be in contact with you to receive training.

Happy Holidays from all of us at the Ypsilanti Historical Museum!

Ypsilanti Historical Society Board/Members

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Winter 2005,
Winter 2005
Original Images:

Board of Trustees:

Virginia Davis-Brown
Ward Freeman
Kathryn Howard
Gerald Jennings
Karen Nickels
John Pappas
Alvin Rudisill
Diane Schick
Bob Southgate

Museum Advisory Board:

Virginia Davis-Brown
Kathleen Campbell
Joan Carpenter
Grace Cornish
Midge Fahndrich
Kathryn Howard
Dorothy Humphrey
Jack Livisay
Karen Nickels
Joy Shulke
Bob Southgate

Archives Advisory Board:

Margaret Best
Morrell Boone
Maria Davis
Gerald Jennings
John Pappas
Marcia Phillips
Hank Prebys
Jane Schmiedeke
Lisa Walters

Endowment Fund Advisory Board:

Peter Fletcher
Ward Freeman
Mike James
Paul Kuwik
Dan Maloney
Jack Minzey
Karen Nickels
Steve Pierce
John Salcau
Martha Spencer
Alvin Rudisill

Report from the Museum Advisory Board

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Fall 2005,
Fall 2005
Original Images:

Author: Virginia Davis-Brown

Now that the leaves are starting to change and even a few are falling, we at the museum are looking forward to the next few months and planning for an exciting fall and winter season.
We hope that you have enjoyed the “Lost Ypsilanti Speaks!” exhibit. Many have told us how much they enjoyed the exhibit as it brings back many memories of the past or they speak of what is there now and really didn't have any idea of the previous business.
September 29 thru October 16 will be our third annual “Quilt Exhibit.” During the last two years we have exhibited over 100 quilts. Some were made in the 1800's and some are the work of people today. If you thought only women made quilts you would be wrong. Last year we had several that were made by a man and they were very unique. If you missed the previous ones why not start thinking about getting together with a friend or two, have lunch somewhere downtown, then come in and see that quilts are works of art and are not just for keeping someone warm. Make an afternoon of it. You are entitled to a day out once in a while.
The “Underground Railroad Exhibit” is still up and will remain for awhile. We also still have the quilt that the children, from the Ann Arbor Child Development Center, made as a class project telling of the flight from slavery.
August 21, 2005, was an exciting day as we gathered to pay homage to a wonderful man who made significant contributions to the YHS Museum and to efforts to keep the history of Ypsilanti alive. One room that Dr. William P. Edmunds was especially fond of was dedicated to his memory. Our Ypsilanti Room will be known as the “Dr. William P. Edmunds Ypsilanti Room.”

We are always in need of volunteers, docents and people who would like to help us keep the museum maintained the way it has been. It takes a lot of tender loving care to see that things are done. If you think you might like to help please give me a call at 484–0080 and we can talk. Remember that, with the holidays coming up, we still have our GIFT SHOP, and we have several interesting books about the city.
Our regular hours are Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays from 2:00 to 4:00 pm. Most of our special exhibits also include Fridays. If you need more information please call 482–4990. Why not plan on coming in to see us and say Hi.

From the President's Desk

Published In:
Ypsilanti Gleanings, Fall 2005,
Fall 2005
Original Images:

By Alvin E. Rudisill

This is the third issue of the Ypsilanti Gleanings in our new format. We hope you will support our advertisers who make this new format possible. Visit the back page of the Gleanings to view a list of advertisers in this issue.

We were very proud and pleased to honor Dr. William P. Edmunds who provided decades of leadership to the Ypsilanti Historical Society and to the City of Ypsilanti. He was a mentor to many of us and his significant contributions to the preservation of Ypsilanti historical artifacts will benefit future generations. We hope everyone will visit the Dr. William P. Edmunds Ypsilanti Room and see the picture and plaque placed there in his honor.

The “Lost Ypsilanti Speaks!” exhibit was a great success. We plan to feature one location that was included in the exhibit in each future issue of the Gleanings. This issue features One South Huron Street where our City Hall is located. It is interesting and enlightening to read about the history of various sites in our city and the original City Hall building was certainly a magnificent structure.

This issue also features the first in a series of articles on churches in Ypsilanti. The “One Hundred Eighty One Years of Methodism in Ypsilanti” article was assembled from a series of historical articles from the First United Methodist Church. We hope those of you who are serving as historians for other churches in Ypsilanti will assist us in gathering materials and writing articles.

Please make sure you mark your calendars for the September 18th quarterly membership meeting and program. The antique roadshow and auction should be a lot of fun. Not only will you be able to have your own favorite antique evaluated but you will be able to listen in on the evaluations of antiques brought in by others. Again, mark your calendars now for September 18, 2005 from 2:00 to 4:00 pm.

Also coming up is our third annual “Quilt Show” from September 29 through October 16. Please read the ad for the quilt show and the comments about the quilt show in the Museum Advisory Board Report in this issue of the Gleanings.

I want to again remind all our members that the back page of the Gleanings includes a membership application. We hope each of you will share your issue of the Gleanings with friends and encourage them to join our Society. Most of our operating budget for the year comes from membership income and every dollar collected allows us to provide better service to the greater Ypsilanti area.

We have posted an additional 170 photographs from our photo archives collections on the Internet. You can access the site by going to the YHS site at “ypsilantihistoricalsociety.org” and then going to the archives section of the site. The site is searchable by keywords.

If you would like to get more involved in Society programs and activities please give me a call at 734–484–3023. We are always looking for volunteers to serve as docents in the Museum or to serve on one of the committees. Activities range from typing in information on a computer to helping with facility maintenance.

For Information about upcoming Society events, visit us on-line at:

www.ypsilantihistoricalsociety.org

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