The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Front.cheers
    MACEE BEERS joins other Fayette Elementary School students for the annual Mini-Cheer performance during the half-time break at the basketball game.
  • Family.3.wide
    CHILDREN at Stair District Library’s Family Story Time toss scarves into the air during an activity. The evening program provided a mix of stories, songs, dancing, crafts and snacks Monday evening. The program is offered at 5:30 p.m. every Monday for five more weeks. The program is designed for three to five year olds and their family.
  • Front.newpaper.2
    THE INTERVIEW—Evelyn Joughin (right) records the interaction with an iPad while Jack Varga, next to her, asks questions of Morenci Elementary School principal Gail Frey. Morenci senior Sam Cool (standing) listens. Cool serves as the editor for the newspaper written by members of Mrs. Barrett’s second grade class.
  • Front.code.2
    WRITING CODE—Brock Christle (left), a Morenci fifth grade student, takes a look at the progress being made by fourth grader Anthony Lewis. Libby Rorick, a sixth grade student, is next in a line of girls trying out the coding tutorials. This year marked Morenci’s second year of participation in the Hour of Code project.
  • Front.gym.new
    REMIE RYAN (left) tries to dodge the foam wand held by Hayden Bays during physical education class at Morenci Elementary School. In the background, Lauryn Dominique and Brooklyn Williams stay clear of the tag. Second grade students were working on cardiovascular health on the first day back from vacation. For the record, Safety Tag is a very difficult sport to photograph.
  • Front.lift
    MORENCI student Dalton McCowan puts everything into a dead lift attempt Saturday morning during the Wyseguy Push/Pull event. Lifters helped raise more than $1,600 for the family of the late Devin Wyse, a former Morenci power-lifter who graduated last year. Commemorative T-shirts are still available by contacting teacher Dan Hoffman.
  • Front.library.books
    MACK DICKSON takes a book off the “blind date” cart at the Fayette library. Patrons can choose a book without knowing what’s inside other than a general category. The books are among those designated for removal so patrons can consider them gifts. In Morenci, new books and staff favorites were chosen from the stacks and must be returned. Patrons get a piece of chocolate, too, to take on their date, but no clue about their “date.” One reader said she really enjoyed her book for a few pages, but then lost interest—so typical for a blind date.

Chesterfield Hall (Grange Hall) demolished 3.11.09

Written by David Green.

The Grange organization formed America in 1867, just after the end of the Civil War, to help rural families establish themselves and prosper.chesterfield.hall.jpg

Members typically met once a week to cover business and to socialize afterward at a potluck meal. Dances, card playing and other entertainment provided rural residents with a way to meet with other farm families for an evening together.

One Grange member would often travel to the post office and bring mail for distribution at the meeting.

Chesterfield’s Grange was organized in 1873 and the first hall was built about half a mile north of the village of Oak Shade.

By 1913, many Grangers had purchased their first automobile, writes Walter Bates in his history of Chesterfield Grange #367.

“After heavy rains and in the spring of the year, the dirt roads became impossible for automobiles to use,” he wrote. “The Grange people began to look for a location with good roads.”

A half acre of land on a rise east of the school was purchased from George and Helen Lee and the original hall was moved to its new home.

The hall was first cut in half for moving. Once in it was hauled by LeRoy Smith to the new property, 20 feet were added between the two halves and a new maple floor was laid. A few members borrowed $4,000 from a bank in Wauseon for the project.

The Chesterfield Grange experienced rapid growth, Bates said, and public dances were scheduled on the weekends to help pay the debt. There was also roller skating on Wednesday nights and the hall was sometimes rented for Pepper card games.

The Grange soon became seen as a community center. The school used the stage until an addition was built in 1936. Many people rented the building for reunions.

The women of Grange families made soup for school lunches—10 cents a bowl—until the school cafeteria was built.

In the 1930s, Grange membership started to drop and costs were hard to cover. On Dec. 10, 1942, an agreement was signed with the township trustees to turn the building over to the township. The Grange reserved the second floor as long as the group met at least four times a year.

The decision was made in 1986 to disband as of Jan. 1, 1987. The township trustees became the new owners of the folding chairs, eating tables and card tables once used by the Grange.

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