Mayors Message: Old Town Hall

This week we hear from Township Administrator Mark Gravinese.

Photo of Old Town Hall from the National Register of Historical Places (National Park Service/Special to The Sun).

When I think of us celebrating our 175-year anniversary, the first thing that comes to mind is our Old Town Hall. It is located at 64 – 62 S. Main Street, in our historic district. This building was constructed in 1871. The two over two windows are original. I have visited this unbelievable building on numerous occasions and always find it interesting with all of the dated artifacts and other relevant archives that are stored on site from our very own town.

The other amazing fact is that we have a group that’s dedicated, rich in history and doing an unbelievable job archiving every piece of information, artifacts and quite honestly, anything that can be identified as a part of our history. They meet every Thursday to do their main course of work that includes research, archiving and filing mounds of information. I often stop in to see what is new and gain expanding knowledge of the history of our town.

The Harrison Township Historical Society offers several display shows that are open to the public, rich in the history of our community and well captured through pictures, newspaper articles, artifacts and often testimonies from back in the days from relatives or friends that add even more history facts.

The general store has just about anything that you could have used and recognized from the past.  Often, I have meetings with the members of the historical society and it is often held in the back room that is an old classroom. This particular room reminds me of my days in Catholic schools – that is not a bad thing either. Black chalkboard, erasers and the alphabet strung along the top of the chalkboard was very prevalent back in my school days. Most students today have never seen a chalkboard. Wow, I’m really dating myself now….

The upper floor has an array of artifacts from farming to carved stones and antique furniture that actually was used within our town. The prized display is the post office window and walls that were the actual the town’s post office back in the day.

We have many historic buildings in our downtown, but the Old Town Hall is a place that stands out. Please make the time to stop by and gain valuable insight to our history and just see how life was simple. It is worth the visit.