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Historical Society reflects on good year, looks to repeat

January 8, 2020
J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

The Poland Historical Society membership had time to reflect on a successful year as the calendar flipped to 2020. A lot had been accomplished in 2019 in the efforts to preserve the society's Little Red Schoolhouse located at 4514 Center Rd., (Rt. 224).

"We can really boast of a successful 2019 with major projects such as exterior of the Schoolhouse painted, repairs made to the bell tower, improved the landscaping, and our biggest project of adding additional parking spaces with the entire parking lot getting blacktopped and lined," said society President Laurie Fox. "Plus new outside LED lighting with two additional lampposts that now light up our parking lot. All were accomplished due to hard work of dedicated members, fundraising activities, and some very generous donations from community organizations and individuals."

Membership in 2019 was another area the society can be proud of. It reached an all-time high with 125 members.

Article Photos

Poland Historical Society Trustees for 2020 include, in front, Debbie Gilbert; Ted Heineman; Doris Rice; June Deeley; Joanne Eiselstein, Treasurer; Regina Rees, Vice-President, and in back Larry Baughman; Dave Smith; Larry Bartos; Melanie Noble, Secretary; Laurie Fox, President; Dick Dale; Frank Mazzarino; Joe Majzik. Missing is Ed Virostek.

"I think local media coverage has been a great help getting people interested in joining the Historical Society and I'm grateful to [the Town Crier] and the others for keeping us in the news," Fox said. "We also currently have a great group of active members who encourage others to join."

She added that interesting programs like the monthly speakers, walking tours, and involvement in Celebrate Poland, Poland's Community Day, Founder's Day at the Tyler History Museum and presentations at retirement homes, churches, schools and community clubs help make the society a well-known entity for Poland residents.

In looking ahead for this year, Fox said there are some definite goals for the Little Red Schoolhouse.

"Maintenance to the Little Red Schoolhouse will continue with interior painting, new heat pump, on-demand hot water, and sidewalk repair," she said "We will also continue the digital scanning of the archives."

On membership, the society wants to keep growing. The dues are $20 per person or $30 per couple residing in the same address. Anyone can join by mailing a check along with name, address, phone number and email address to Poland Historical Society, PO Box 5052, Poland, OH 44514.

One of the highlight programs for 2020 will be the return of the popular "Home Tours" with a tour of eight 19th Century homes in Poland. The event is scheduled for Sept. 19 and more information will be made available as the date nears.

As is the past few years, the society has formed a year-long line up of guest speakers and topics for the monthly meetings at the Little Red Schoolhouse. Years ago, Fox said the society would schedule speakers a few months in advance, but found it better to schedule further out.

"For the past few years we've done a complete list of speakers for the upcoming year," Fox said. "We start half way through the current year to begin planning programs for the next year and finalize plans and speakers before the first of December, so our new calendar is ready for our December meeting."

The following list is for the 2020 season. All speakers will talk at the society's meeting at 6:30 p.m. p.m. (7:30 p.m. p.m. for the speaker) at the Little Red Schoolhouse.

Jan. 21, meeting 6:30 p.m. , program 7:30 p.m. "Sheet & Tube Company Homes," Timothy Sokoloff, President, Iron Soup Historical Preservation.

Feb. 18, meeting 6:30 p.m. , program 7:30 p.m. "Western Reserve Architecture," Bob Mastriana, Architect.

March 17, meeting 6:30 p.m. , program 7:30 p.m. "WWII Conflicts," Joe Conroy, Jr., Canfield War Museum.

April 21, Mmeeting 6:30 p.m. , program 7:30 p.m. "History of Model Trains," JT Whitehouse, Western Reserve Village Trustee.

May 19, meeting 6:30 p.m. , program 7:30 p.m. "Poland Stories - Good & Bad, Happy & Sad," Historical Society Members

June 14, Sunday Open House, 1 to 3 p.m. "Antique Collectibles on Display.''

June 16, meeting and picnic at Poland Township Park - no program

June 26-27, Celebrate Poland - Parade Participation. Display by Historical Society near Village Town Hall and Graveyard & Cemetery Tours and S. Main St. Walking Tours.

July 12, Sunday Open House, 1 to 3 p.m. "Good Old Summer Time in Poland," Ice cream social. Old time games and entertainment

No meeting - No program in July

Aug. 9, Sunday Open House, 1 to 3 p.m. "Celebrating PHS and the Little Red Schoolhouse," Hot dogs, popcorn, desserts.

Aug. 18, meeting 6:30 p.m. No Program.

Sept. 15, meeting 6:30 p.m., program 7:30 p.m. "19th Century Poland Homes" at Poland Presbyterian Church, Dave Smith, Poland Historical Society Trustee.

Sept. 19, tour of 19th Century Poland Homes.

Oct. 11, Sunday Open House, 1 to 3 p.m. "Fall Fun with Crafts"

Oct. 20, meeting 6:30 p.m., program 7:30 p.m. "Coal War in the Mahoning Valley," Joe Tucciarone and Ben Lariccia.

Nov. 17, meeting 6:30 p.m., program 7:30 p.m. "Evolution of Poland Neighborhoods," Historical Society members and guests.

Dec. 15, Christmas Dinner for members



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