Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Town photo

                      Looking west on Elm St.

May newsletter

The museum will be open as usual this summer on Sundays from 1 to 4 in June, July and August. Admission is free. Tours can be arranged for other times and the museum is available for anyone doing genealogical research. We encourage the public to drop in and visit. There will be some new displays including the giant quilt made in 1976 by members of the community for the Bicentennial.

The heavy three-part mirror in the dress shop that fell over and broke in 2011 has been ably repaired by Ted Bornhorst and returned to its usual position. There are plans to anchor it to the wall. Tom Busse has been painting and repairing.

A new sump pump and two water heaters have been installed. The water is back on and the restrooms once again operational. Rapid Development replaced the roof and donated their labor. Also several people donated money for both of these projects.

We have had several donations this year that are much appreciated. We survive on what we make from the Christmas dinners and donations and the sale of our books. Local people have been generous with their time and money. Their support reflects how much they care about the preservation of their history. Remember that if you shop at Kroger's or work at Walmart you can get donations for the museum.

A project we could use help with is a sound system so we could play Christmas music through the building. Our sound system at the moment consists of two broken cassette players and a couple of antique speakers. Another thing we need is a new website or an update of the old one.

The meeting was attended by former resident, Harry Boerger and his wife, Rita. Harry has collected hundreds of photos of local scenes and is planning to make them available to the public on CD's.

A bike tour is expected to run through town on June 21st and we expect to be open for that.

For more information about us click on the tabs at the top of the page and scroll down for more articles.


The Oklahoma tornado brings up memories of the April 11, 1965, Palm Sunday tornado here. The tornado came through Fort Loramie at 10 pm. The storm which roared into Shelby County from the west cut a swath a half mile wide along Ft. Loramie-Swanders and Meranda Roads. Three people were killed including Mrs. Bernadine Barhorst and an elderly couple in the Anna area. Twenty five houses were destroyed and 40 barns destroyed or heavily damaged. A train was derailed near Anna.

Wilma Brunswick who lived in Cynthian Township wrote about the tornado. This is part of her story. More of her memories can be found in our book, Fort Loramie, Main St. and Beyond.

"The atmosphere had a greenish tint. Around 10 pm it rolled in from the Darke-Shelby County line to Shelby-Logan County line, a length of 20 miles.

The Martin Bender family was moving from the John Bender farm. It took down trees and the barn but the brick house was intact. The neighbors were on their knees around the beer keg praying.

Then it hit Cast Stone Products and did damage. It skipped across and wrecked Tom Moeller's body shop. It skirted the south end of Loramie. Dick and Dolores Wehrman along Ft. Loramie-Swanders Rd. could look up into the funnel and said it was full of flying debris.

Then it crossed over Ft. Loramie-Swanders Rd and hit the Phil Ernst farm on the north side of the road and took everything. Then it came across the road and struck the buildings on the Bill Holthaus farm. It hit and missed farms as it passed from one side of Meranda Road to the next. It hit the Fred Barhorst farm on Kuther Road after it had demolished Cuba School. Then to Bob Platfoot's buildings, twisting the house. Then it started down Meranda Road with a vengeance. The Bill Wenger farm with beautiful well-kept buildings - nothing left.

It pulled electric light poles and laid them down on the ground. Some had straw spears driven into them like you would a nail. There was a farm atop a hill at Shelby-Logan line. There wasn't even a board left. Before it hit Cuba School it roared down Hardin-Wapak Road, took Flaute's barn, wrecked Lentz's buildings, and then hit Barney Ahrns'. One of the girls had a stick driven through her chest and out of her back.

Albert and I were upstairs in our bedroom watching tv. The tv went off came back on and went off and stayed off. No lights. I looked out of the east window and it looked like you opened a coal burning stove. It rained so hard it rained the grass out of the ground. Albert went out on the north porch and he could hear chain saws everywhere."

There are many websites on the internet to explore.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Willman burglary

On May 22, 1924, Willman's store was burglarized.  Sales people the next morning found a door unlocked and other unusual things they noticed led them to make a hasty inventory. They found about $400 worth of clothing, shoes and watches missing. The burglers had used a skeleton key to get in and had gone through the store putting things in sugar sacks they found in the basement.

When news of the burglary came out village people started to remember things they had seen. A car was seen parked in an unusual place. Then William Meyer and his sons who worked the Barney Ernst farm near Shorts Landing took shelter from a storm in an old log cabin and found sacks of Willman goods hidden there.

Three men who had been living at the reservoir were arrested. All had criminal records and were wanted for various other crimes. One of them was wearing a coat with a Willman tag in it.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Lake Loramie spillway

More updates

The heavy mirror in the dress shop that fell over and broke in 2011 has been ably repaired by Ted Bornhorst. Rapid Development replaced the roof earlier this year and donated their labor.

Mr. and Mrs. George Fischer and son of Cincinnati visited the museum on May 4th. They stayed at the lake and spent the weekend visiting local museums.

Speaking of the lake, there are plans to replace the spillway. No definite date has been announced but it won't be this year.