Alpha Mu Chapter visits museum

Connie Crawford models an 1880s physical education outfit. -- Contributed

STEUBENVILLE — Members of Alpha Mu Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma went back in time to a days-of-old school setting when they gathered for their spring meeting at the Pleasant Hill School House Museum located on 3125 state Route 213.

There they heard from museum representatives Gloria Renda, Connie Crawford, Avis Henry and Mary Alice Meyer about its history and services.

Renda served 11 years at the helm of the restoration project that began in February 2008 when a group of interested people — many retired teachers — started discussing preservation of the building. It was built in 1836 and last used as a school in 1952. The museum marked its 10th anniversary in April 2018.

The museum features a 48-star flag and takes donated items only dated prior to 1952, Renda told the group. The schoolhouse is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Extensive renovations were done by volunteers, with donations solicited, for example, to restore the windows.

Chapter members were able to view a video of the renovations during the lunch portion of the meeting.

Donned in her 1880s physical education teacher “bloomers” outfit, complete with a black hat, Crawford described how student tours experience what an 1880s school day, including the games children at that time would have played. Henry and Meyer assume the roles of schoolhouse teachers of the times.

Alpha Mu member Karen Goddard noted her mother, Evelyn Stanley, was a student at the schoolhouse from 1933-35. Member Mary Ellen (Grafton) Swickard explained that the original desks had been stored in the Grafton barn.

Tours and educational programs presented at the museum are free. Donations, memberships and fundraisers constitute sources of income. In addition to a book sale in April, the museum hosts a Christmas in July fundraiser. It will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on July 13. Gently used decorations may be dropped off at the school house on July 12 or can be picked up. Arrangements can be made by contacting Connie Crawford at (740) 544-5666. Proceeds from the sale help with museum expenses.

The chapter presented a donation to the museum following the presentation.

During the business meeting attended by 27, thank you notes were acknowledged from the Cancer Dietary Initiative and Urban Mission Ministries.

Donations were taken for the Carrollton Back-to-School extravaganza. Plans for the June executive board meeting in Amsterdam were made along with a July 17 outing to Amish country to see “Stolen” at the Ohio Star Theater.

The communications committee was in charge of the drawing. Winners were Sally George, Barbara Pritts and Kathy Pavlik.

Reports were given by Mary Barnes, Dani Carroll, Gina Judy, Bunny Lucci, Pritts, Nancy Shuster, Darlene Smith and Ann Wiley.