'This is the history about us'

Joe Centers, Norwalk Reflector, Ohio
·2 min read

Apr. 18—WILLARD — "We're small but we are mighty."

Those were the words Friday of Willard Historical Society President Margo Barnett prior to the ribbon-cutting for the new museum in uptown Willard.

"I was born and raised in Norwich Township. I went to school in Willard (a 1968 Willard High School graduate) and lived here almost almost all of my life," Barnett said prior to the event. "This is my family. This is how I grew up. This is the history about us ... of who I am and how I was molded by this community. It's about the people.

"We want to grow and hope to get something bigger. This is our start."

It is the society's second museum in town going hand-in-hand with the railroad museum in the park.

"I am so happy for this day," Barnett told the crowd. "Many of you I know. Some of you I have grown up with. Some of you I have been working with. Some people I just met. This is so special to me and special to our community ... in putting together how we got here and where we are going."

"The museum is a celebration of the growth of businesses, industries and city life of Willard from its beginning as Chicago, Ohio to Chicago Junction

to village to city now," Johanna Beebe said.

"Beginning as a R.R. community for the B & O Railroad, A RR museum is established at the Depot in the Park building at the Willard park.

"The new museum in Uptown Willard will include memorabilia from the Willard city community, the town ships, and Centerton, Havana and Celeryville. Items on display are from local community people by donation or on loan. Displays will be changed periodically using various themes or specific event memorabilia.

"This museum will help to preserve the wide panorama of local history of the Willard Area."

For more pictures and information follow the Willard Area Historical Society's Facebook page.