The Ottumwa Courier

Wapello County

June 6, 2013

Celebrating 25 years

OTTUMWA — For the past 25 years, the train depot at 210 W. Main St. has been the home of the Wapello County Historical Museum. This central location has given the Historical Society the opportunity to preserve, display and share important links to the area's past.

A 25th anniversary celebration of the museum's current location will be held from 5-7 p.m. June 13. The event will include door prizes, popcorn, snow cones and cupcakes, and Dizzy the Clown will be on hand from 5-6 p.m.

The main purpose of the event, organizers say, is to reintroduce the community to what the museum has to offer. The ever-changing exhibits tell the story of those who came before and paved the way for present-day southeast Iowans.

“So many people who live here now have no roots here. They think there's no connection for them,” said society treasurer Phyllis Dean. “But then they come and see, and they enjoy (the museum).”

Ken Venables' father, W. Sinclair, came to the United States from England, bringing with him an emphasis and love of history. After settling in Ottumwa, he began to collect historical pieces from around the county. This led to display areas in the Municipal Building and then a house on Chester Avenue.

“He bought more showcases on his own, and the collection grew. He looked at it as an unpaid job,” Venables said.

In 1987, the Historical Society was able, through donations and the sale of the Chester Avenue property, to purchase the current museum site from the Burlington Route. Within a year, the money was raised to install an elevator, which actually cost more than the building itself.

“It was an opportunity — Ottumwa needed someone to take this building and remodel it,” board member Jim Williams said. “It took a tremendous number of volunteer hours.”

Text Only
Wapello County
  • County signs law enforcement agreement with Eddyville OTTUMWA — A law enforcement service contract between Wapello County and the city of Eddyville received supervisors' approval on Tuesday. Beginning July 1, Eddyville will pay the Wapello County Sheriff’s office $3,833 per month or $45,996 for law enfo

    April 15, 2014

  • County considers hiring conservation aide OTTUMWA — On Tuesday morning, Wapello County Board of Supervisors will consider hiring a part-time conservation aide at its weekly board meeting. The meeting will be at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday in the board’s meeting room located on the third floor of the c

    April 11, 2014

  • 0412 OTT Brush fire color photo 2 -T Brush fire breaks out on east side of city OTTUMWA — Late Friday morning, a fire broke out in a vacant area of trees and brush next to the Ottumwa Water Pollution Control Facility. Both the Wapello County Rural Fire Department and Ottumwa Fire Department were called to the scene of the fire,

    April 11, 2014 3 Photos

  • Wapello County Courthouse.jpg Courthouse to receive facelift

    OTTUMWA — First, Chief Wapello received a facelift. Now, it’s the county courthouse’s turn. On Tuesday evening, Wapello County Board of Supervisors approved spending $139,000 for repair and maintenance of the historic courthouse. Karr Tuckpointing o

    April 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • Another health care option OTTUMWA — If you didn't get your "mandatory" health insurance by the deadline earlier this week, you may have another option. Or two. "I'd certainly keep trying," said Greg Kenning, a Wapello County supervisor. He said it's his understanding that the

    April 2, 2014

  • Trial set in child pornography case OTTUMWA — The Ottumwa man accused in a child pornography case will go on trial this summer. Rass Kerby Jr., is charged with enticing a minor to engage in a sex act or simulated sex act and possession of media of a minor engaged in a sex act. He was a

    April 2, 2014

  • Wanted: People who love history OTTUMWA — If you have a love for history, Wapello County has an interest in you. Wapello County Board of Supervisors is considering withdrawing from the State Historical Society’s Certified Local Government program unless interested people are willin

    April 1, 2014

  • 0530 OTT flood damaged bridge -L Bridge repair tops county's 5-year plan

    OTTUMWA — Road construction in Wapello County will be taking on a different look in the next three years. On Tuesday, County Engineer Brian Moore told the Wapello County Board of Supervisors bridge replacement will be a high priority. “We’ll have a h

    April 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0321 OTT animal rescue league update color photo -L -M Animal van trial set

    OTTUMWA — Trial has been scheduled in the case that preceded the rescue of hundreds of animals in Drakesville. Roger Blew, 45, of Drakesville, has pleaded not guilty to the four criminal charges he faced in Ottumwa. Police charged Blew with one count

    March 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wapello building remains county property OTTUMWA — An option to sell the Wapello building in downtown Ottumwa to River Hills Community Health Center was nixed by the Wapello County Board of Supervisors Tuesday evening. On March 5, River Hills Community Health Center CEO Richard Johnson wrot

    March 12, 2014

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National