are held at 114 Valleyview Dr., Englewood, OH on the second Wednesday of each month. 7 PM April - October and 1 PM. November - March.
History Center Hours
The History Center is open to the public. Scheduled visiting hours are from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m every Saturday from April through November, weather permitting, and also by appointment. Call 937-832-8538.
114 Valleyview Drive Englewood, OH 45322
All rights reserved.
Randolph Twp. Historical Society
  
       
GRAND OPENING/ DEDICATION/ FUNDRAISER
Report on the Grand Opening
Some 200 attend the Grand Opening of the RTHS History Center
July 26-27, 2008
A dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony highlighted the grand opening of the RTHS History Center at
114 Valleyview Drive at 1:00 PM on July 26, 2008. President Glynn Marsh welcomed the crowd of about 100.
State Representative Arlene Setzer spoke next and presented the Society with a State of Ohio flag and
proclamation from the Ohio General Assembly congratulating the Society on making so much progress in just
ten years. Commander Jim Bruin American Legion Post 707 donated the American Flag and standard.
Eric Smith, City Manager of Englewood, Joyce Deitering, Mayor of Clayton, and Mike O’Callaghan,
Vice-Mayor of Union all were on hand representing their respective cities and made brief remarks. Clayton
and Union each donated checks of $5,000 each for the RTHS Building Fund, and Englewood donated $2,500.
With the city’s donations, plus business and member support, the Society already has collected $31,000
toward its Building Fund goal of $100,000. This is commendable, but more fundraising remains to be done.
Donors at the different levels will be recognized on a plaque to be placed in the foyer at the History Center
next year. A pledge form is available for those who would like to contribute to the preservation of Randolph
All together some 200 persons wandered through the various focus areas of exhibits, which featured early
maps, schools, businesses, transportation, churches and city and township memorabilia. Displays also were set
up downstairs. Everyone listened and enjoyed the foot tapping music played by Paul Dewey on a hand cranked 1913
cylinder phonograph and enjoyed tasty treats prepared by the refreshments crew. Many visitors marveled at the
banks of file cabinets in the research wing, which houses all manner of local history information and records.
Later this fall, regular visitors’ hours will be established so the public can make use of these records for
their own research. Open hours will depend on the availability of hosts at the Center.
Member - volunteers are needed.
Sunday evening at 5:00 PM, after the public event was over, about thirty members of the Society shared a
carry-in dinner to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Society. Thanks to everyone who participated, the
grand opening was a huge success. We are looking forward to many years of service to the community.
RTHS History Tent Open Again at the Englewood Festival
August 26-27, 2008
For the tenth year in a row, RTHS members set-up and manned their History Tent at the Englewood Festival in Centennial Park. Beautiful the weather with low humidity and temperatures in the low 70s greeted Society members serving as hosts. Saturday crowds were very large throughout the day. Sunday was slightly less busy. Since both the City of Clayton and RTHS are celebrating their tenth anniversaries this year, displays in the tent centered around the Village of Clayton, the Just-a-Mere Grange, the traction line and that part of Dayton-Covington Pike that runs through Clayton (Irvington area). Copies of "Memories of Clayton-Then and Now," the most recent Society publication containing transcriptions of oral history programs held earlier in 2008 plus additions, were available.
Donations of $10.00 were requested for the booklet, which can also be ordered on-line. The Society also has reprinted copies of two previous oral history booklets that had sold out: "Memories of Old Route 40" (published in 2006) and "Memories of the Dayton-Covington Pike" (published in 2007). Each booklet can be obtained for a $10.00 donation plus $2.50 each for shipping. All three booklets can be ordered using the same form. Please enclose remittance with the order and mail to RTHS, P.O. Box 355, Clayton, OH, 45315.
Photos show the History Tent and some of the interested guests. Many of the festivalgoers also stopped by the RTHS History Center at 114 Valleyview Drive when they left the festival. Hosts were on hand from 1-5 to greet, among others, about a dozen members of Randolph High School Class of 1951 who were in the area for their annual reunion.
"Memories of Clayton: Part I"
More than sixty attendees came to our first "Memories of Clayton" program. Joanne Vermilya MacArthur (NHS-class of ‘63), Karl Schroeder (RHS-52) and Sharon Brumbaugh Walker (RHS-56) were presenters. Joanne led off with her memories of growing up on a farm that Interstate 70 now runs along. Her father, John Vermilya, was County Extension Agent in the 1950s and in charge of 4-H activities in Clayton for over twenty years. She helped those in the audience reminisce about the fun 4-H members had at the County Fair in Dayton - with their exhibits of animals, handcrafted items and handsewn clothing. Many ribbon winners were in the audience! Joanne's Northmont class was the first to spend all four years at the new school, formed after Randolph, Clayton and Phillipsburg Schools consolidated.
Sharon Brumbaugh Walker traced her roots in Randolph Township back to the middle 1800s. Her Brumbaugh ancestors bought a farm on Wenger Road in 1872. David Brumbaugh, Jr. married Susan Miller and they had several children including Charles Russell, Mary Ethel, Viola Ruth, Harvey, Everett and Ralph. Everett was Sharon's father. All the Brumbaughs attended Salem and Clayton schools. Sharon grew up on the south side of National Road, in a house owned by the Feiock family. Her dad helped Feiocks raise chickens. Later, Sharon's family lived two doors north of the IGA grocery in Clayton. She reminded members in the audience about Halloween escapades in town including throwing shelled corn at windows of houses, and the occasional outhouse tipping (of course she denied taking part in any of this) .
Karl Schroeder's father, Otto Schroeder, immigrated to Dayton from Germany in the 1920s, when he was only eighteen years old. He married Mona Hull and they had three children, Shirley, Karl and Monna (Mitzi). In 1939, Shirley and Karl and their parents took an ocean liner to Germany to see the Schroeder relatives. As a young boy, Karl recalls seeing all the German soldiers marching in the streets and giving the heil Hitler sign. He says he mimicked their goosesteps when he returned, causing some controversy in the neighborhood. Karl spoke about Clayton Boy Scout Troop 140, their jamborees and life along the Salem Pike.
Members of the audience chimed in with their own stories to round out the evening..
The second roundtable “Memories of Clayton: Part II”
About fifty attended our second "Memories of Clayton" program. Speakers for the evening were Marjorie O (Cattertin) Papp, Jerry Sherman and Glen Landes. Many of the stories that were shared brought chuckles from members of the audience who oftentimes joined in with more details. A few highlights from each of the presentations will be mentioned here - hopefully, just enough to whet your appetite for more which can be satisfied by purchasing a copy of "Memories of Clayton." By purchasing a copy you will be helping out the Society's general operating fund. (See order form.)
Margie's parents, Clem and Elsie Cattertin, bought four lots in the southeastern part of Randolph Township in 1922 in the Irvington Plat. The family kept farm animals and grew many of their own vegetables for canning. Her job as a young child was to pick off the bean beetles! Margie and the neighborhood kids enjoyed playing on Sam Gingrich's stone monuments located behind the Cattertin house. They swam in the Stillwater River to the east. Margie still lives in the house her father built and raised her own five children there. She attended Randolph Schools for twelve years and graduated in 1943. She said that ten of her classmates still have a reunion. She told about the different businesses that lined the Dayton-Covington Pike back in the 1940s-1960s, some of whom like Hite's Market sponsored boys baseball teams in the summers.
The second speaker was Jerry Sherman who was born in Union. In 1939 he lived with his grandparents, Walter and Etta Caylor on a farm on Route 40. Later he moved to Fox Rd. with his mother and stepfather Harry Sherman Jerry reminisced about places in the northern part of what today is Clayton including Webster Fox's Crown Hill Dairy on Fox Road, the Kern Motel and the dairy and Warner Poultry Farm on Route 40. Walter Caylor owned a welding shop for many years along Route 40.
Final speaker for the evening was Glen Landes. Glen was born in 1933 in the house (no longer standing) along Route 40 which later became the Caylor Farm. Perhaps to the surprise of some of the listeners, Glen's German Baptist Brethren heritage did not keep him from exploring as a youth such worldly ways as movies in downtown Dayton and playing spin-the-bottle with some of the local girls. His parents bought a large farm on Haber Road where he lived in later years and carried out his egg business. His brother Keith operates Landes Meat Market on the east side of Haber Road. Glen is retired now and takes groups on trips to Landes Valley in Pennsylvania, the home of his ancestors, and to parts of Germany where his family line originated.
The programs ended about 9:30 PM with the group enjoying refreshments lovingly prepared by Phyllis Scarbro and her crew consisting of Caroline Bergman and Shirley Whiting
Thanks to all six presenters who gave freely of their valuable time and energy to make both oral history programs so interesting. Only through programs such as these can we fill in the gaps between the older history accounts published in the 1900s and life today.
NOTE: The Memories of Clayton -Then and Now booklet is available for a donation of $10.00 plus postage. This booklet is the largest of the three we have published so far - with 71 pages of narrative. In addition to the stories recorded at both meetings, four other narratives are included. These are: Excerpts from "My Autobiography" written in 1965 by Frank Betz which talks about the old Village during the 1890s-1900s; "Growing Up in Clayton" by Edgar Benton which covers his life in the Village; "Rural Clayton" by Kay Dawson in which she recalls growing up along Union Road; and "Taylorsburg-1940" by Karl Schroeder which mentions people and buildings located in this small, and many times forgotten, crossroads in the southwestern part of Randolph Township (now Clayton).
Several guests brought boxes of historic photographs and books to give to the Society.
Order form for booklet…. Memories Of Clayton
A Plea for Contributions to this Column by Sue Cummings
Much of the history of Randolph Township is connected to early pioneers who emigrated to this area and settled in and around Salem, Ohio
The town was founded in 1816, only twelve years after Randolph Township itself was formed. Descendants of many of these families still live in the area. We want to feature stories of Clayton families from this column (THE FAMILY TREE) in each of the four quarterly issues of Randolph Times in 2008.
If you have a family genealogy or story to share, please send it to Sue Cummings for possible use in this column.
Here are two examples of the types of things that would be of interest to our members and all current residents.
My Autobiography -by Frank M. Betz (1965), some excerpts
NOTE: Frank Betz was born in a house in Salem in 1885. His autobiography, written at age 80 in 1965, includes Betz family genealogy as well as comments about life in Salem, the Dayton- Northern interurban, local businesses and residents.
In 1904 Betz became the first rural mail carrier to serve the Clayton P. 0. Betz covered his route with a horse and buggy. "On May 2, 1904, a Rural Route was established in Clayton. ...The route was 26 miles long, and the following was my route: East to Hoke Road, north to National Road, east through Englewood to Frederick Pike, north to Martindale Rood, west to River Road, south through Englewood to Hyer schoolhouse, thence west on Old Salem Road, south on Taywood Road, west on Westbrook Road, through Taylorsburg to the last house, Back to Salem Pike, northwest to Union Road, to Happy Corner, east on Old Salem Road, north and east on Kinsey Road, north on Taywood Road to Wenger Road, west to Union Road. south to Old Salem Road, to Salem Pike, jog on Hoke Road to Kimmel Road to Clayton P. 0.
Growing: up in Clayton -by Edgar Benton (2007), excerpts
NOTE: Edgar's family moved to Clayton in 1948. He attended Clayton Consolidated School, operated a business in Clayton and has lived there all his life. His comments on fellow residents of Clayton, business owners in town and local activities and childhood pranks cover the 1940s - 1970s.
"The Clayton Hardscrabble Park became our second home. The older boys played ball all morning on the only field at the bottom of the hill on the north side. They would cut out base paths, find rocks, pieces of wood, etc. for the bases. The players were James "Whitey" Benton, Don and Floyd Benton, Bobby Mikesell, Tim Walker, Bob and Jim Peffley, the Royer brothers, Pat McKenna, Bobby Mills, Dwain Dearth Ronald Sluterbeck, Donny Hutchinson and, lastly, Gerald Brown." "We would fish down at the park -large bass, bluegill, suckers, everything -and then we would freeze the fish all winter, and then at the end of the year we would have a fish fry down at the Park. " "Ken and Steve Walker and I hunted snakes, and one morning we caught 72 snakes between the five of us. In one morning, 72 snakes in the Clayton Park. Brookville had a pet show, and I attended. I had a California king snake, Ken Walker had an alligator and Steve had a pet skunk. ... I finished in fourth place. ..."
These and many more interesting accounts will be included in our Clayton booklet coming out in June. What stories can you remember? Please share them with us.
|More stories about early Clayton will be presented at 7:30 pm on March 12 at the Janice Ward Center, 235 E. Salem Street, Clayton. If you have a historic photo to share, please call the Society at 832-1858 or bring it to the program.