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

  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • 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.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.office
    NEW OFFICES—Fayette village administrator Steve Blue speaks with tax administrator Genna Biddix at the new front desk of the village office. Village council members voted to use budgeted renovation funds targeted for the old office and instead buy the vacant bank building on the corner of Main and Fayette streets. The old office was sold to Sherwood State Bank. When everything is put into place in the spacious new village office, an open house will be scheduled. Council member David Wheeler donated all of his time needed to make changes in the bank interior to fit the Village’s needs.

Fayette history albums donated to library 05.19.10

Written by David Green.

Many Fayette residents were familiar with the late Vivien Ford, known as the community’s official historian.

A collection of her historical records is now available for viewing at Normal Memorial Library through the recent donation of three albums created by her daughter, Kathleen Fix.

The collection includes a comprehensive timeline of Fayette history.

“The document is about 30 pages long and is still growing,” Fix said.

There are numerous other documents on the history of Gorham Township, the history of Fayette, the Normal University, the Fayette Opera House, the Fayette Area Schools, a family history document based on Vivien Ford's final diary, collections of copies of photos and articles from the local newspapers and from books.

The albums include photos and articles about the early history of the town, the people, homes, fire department, railroads and other transportation in and around Fayette and Harrison Lake State Park.

Ford wrote several documents about the history of the town in her book, “The First 100 Years,” and she provided information for various news articles from local newspapers. She also wrote about the Fayette Opera House and the Allen family. The documents were transcribed onto a computer.

Ford’s collection was compiled into 10 albums located at her home. The three albums donated to the library represent a compilation of the 10.

“Through research, we are obtaining a much greater understanding of historical Fayette,” Fix said. “For example, we now have more than one source for Fayette’s incorporation in 1873, thanks to the deed records, presented by Dale Pfund, of Fayette’s hardware store.

“We have a collection of obituaries that gives us a microscopic look into the lives of early Fayette citizens, thanks to Grace Sly's gift of old obituaries to the Fayette Historical Society.”

Obituaries tell a lot about the village’s past citizens, Fix said.

People have stories to tell and Fix enjoys hearing the stories shared.

“Learning about our shared past gives us hope for all the tomorrows of Fayette” she said. “Perhaps we can build a future by keeping our past alive.”

She envisions a downtown Fayette with a museum and gift shop, several antique shops, and an old parlor style ice cream emporium.

“Fayette needs a committed effort to advertise our positive aspects that would foster new businesses and industry in Fayette,” Fix said.

And she promises to deliver additional historical albums to the library in the future.

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