April 2022 Meeting

Morrow County businesses were the topic of the April meeting as MCGS members and guests shared photos, memories and interesting facts about various Morrow County stores or companies. Each of the businesses mentioned brought discussion and shared memories from those present.

Dan Rhodebeck shared the history of ownership of the general store in North Woodbury, which included one of his ancestors, John Rule.

Stan Sipe shared some of the history of the Union Store, which opened Jan 1, 1915. The Union Store advertised in every single issue of the local newspaper for the next 72 years. Stan shared a 1966 full page ad for the Union Store’s toy department. The Union store closed in 1987. Stan shared that the oldest store currently in downtown Mt Gilead is Hoffman Office Supply, which was previously Fate’s. He also remembered the Gamble Store which opened across from the hospital in 1955-56. Gamble’s had hardware, appliances and sporting goods.

Howard Black showed a Morrow County Hospital bill for a mother and new baby in 1955. The delivery,, ten day hospital stay, and related expenses totaled $248.07. Also included with the bill were instructions on how to care for a child with the admonition, “If you are in doubt, consult your doctor not your neighbor”.

Laura Artrip shared a story she’s heard many times about her older brother and cousin playing in the toy store at Pamida.

Ann Artrip shared some business names she found recently when doing some research at OGS. These included: The Office of Z B Plumb, dealer in stoves, tinware and house furnishing goods, roofing and spouting located in Mt Gilead in 1889; Woods Hardware Co located 13 N Main St in 1942; The Edison Oil and Gas Company in 1903. Ann also shared memories from Conley’s which was located where NAPA is now.

Verlton Kunze remembered eating at Porter’s Restaurant when it was located where Hospice of Morrow County is now. He also remembered when he was young and there were three bars along Main St in Mt Gilead. His mother would allow him to cross the street by himself to go to the Hardware store, but he wasn’t allowed to walk down the sidewalk in front of the bars.

Phylis Miller told about her relative, Paul Bush, born in 1906. He didn’t want to farm so he opened Paul Bush Radio Shop in Mt Gilead. He offered battery charging, radio repair, and other services. In 1927, he opened his shop to those wanting to come listen to the Dempsey vs Tunney boxing rematch.

Mary Jane Robinson showed her father’s jacket from the Ford garage where he had been a loyal customer. Mary Jane also shared that her ancestor, Oliver Richardson Manning, owned a grocery store in Westfield.

Janet Rhodebeck shared pictures of some of her ancestors, including Thomas Jefferson Moon who owned a grocery store in Meeker in Marion County. Thomas’s daughter and son-in-law built a grocery store in Ontario in Richland County. Everyone in the family had assigned posts of where they were to stand when gypsies got off the train and came into the store.

The “sharing” meetings are very popular and bring lots of memories and stories. This one did not disappoint.