History of the Wyandot County Historical Society

In the early 1900s, several attempts were made to begin an historical society in Wyandot County. Emil Schlup, Zach Smith, Mark Carr, Jay Marguerat and Cyrus Hare formed an organization called the Wyandot Historical Society, but it did not survive long and most of its collection was turned over the the Ohio Historical Society.

In 1926 the Automobile Club of Upper Sandusky held a pageant to raise funds for the support of another historical organization. A few people banded together with intent to form a group, but nothing came of this second attempt.

Dr. Frank H. Lang receives credit as the founder of the present society. Originally from Cleveland, he located to Tiffin where his father became a judge. Dr. Lang organized the Seneca County Historical Society, which folded when he enlisted in World War I. He moved to Upper Sandusky, bringing with him the artifacts he had used to begin the Seneca County Historical Society.

Dr. Lang and a few other hisorically minded people discussed the formation of another historical society. They gathered their personal collections together and created displays in various windows along Sandusky Avenue. The displays caught the attention of many community people, who also began to donate items. Three days after the displays were assembled, an article appeared in the paper asking the community to refrain from donating more items until a larger facility was found to house them.

In January 1929, a committee composed of Dr. Lang, Charles Art and Harry Kinley met to apply for a charter and draft by-laws for the Wyandot County Historical and Archaeological Society. The articles of incorporation for the Society were signed on January 31, 1929.

It was not until June 1929 that the Wyandot County Historical and Archaeological Society finally found a home. The county commissioners secured a room at the Courthouse. The commissioners also gave the Society $600 per year for expenses. In addition, Harry Kinley gave $6.00, which was left over from the treasury of the previous Society.

In 1961, Fowler Beery McConnell gave the Wyandot County Historical Society his family home for a dollar, on the stipulation that it will always be used as a museum. The Wyandot County Museum was dedicated in 1962, in honor of McConnell’s mother, Leefe Beery McConnell. The museum is now home to artifacts and documents relating to the history of Wyandot County. In addition, the Society operates the Overland Inn, Charlotte’s Schoolhouse, Anderson General Store, and oversees the daily operations of the Indian Mill for the Ohio History Connection.

Statement of Purpose

The Wyandot County Historical Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to the acquisition, preservation and interpretations of physical evidence, relevant to the history of Wyandot County, Ohio and surrounding areas. To fulfill such purposes, the Wyandot County Historical Society will support, operate and maintain facilities with professional standards of operation for its collections.

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