Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Archive for the ‘Museums’ Category

Dogwood Pass – The Old West Still Lives on in Ohio

Dogwood Pass SignHowdy, partner!

If you want the feeling of the Old West right close to home, head on down to Dogwood Pass in the hills of Southern Ohio. Many roads head that direction. All are scenic.

Dogwood Pass Frog and Sharlene 2 (2)

Twenty-five years ago, Sharlene and Frog were married under a tree on the land that is today Dogwood Pass.

This Western town developed rather recently in Beaver, Ohio as an idea of Mike “Frog” Montgomery. Now, Frog has always had a passion for the history and life of a cowboy. He grew up on the farm that today holds Dogwood Pass. Why, he and Sharlene even got married on this spot twenty-five years ago.

Dogwood Pass Barmaids Nikki and Zoe

Nikki and Zoe served as barmaids in Dogwood Saloon, where the strongest drink was ‘root beer’.

One thing Frog always wanted was his own saloon to hang out in after horseback riding or hunting. In 2009, he decided to build a saloon in his back yard. Just for a hobby! Even Mike admits that his hobby went wild…Wild, Wild West, that is.

Dogwood Pass Bank Robbery

Sit back on wooden benches to watch “The Bank Robbery at Dogwood Pass”.

Not only is there a growing village, but a couple times a day you can see a live Wild West Show, “Bank Robbery at Dogwood Pass”. There’s a whole lotta shootin’ and chasin’ goin’ on, including a jail escape.

Dogwood Pass Chldren

Children took part in a special show at Dogwood Pass.

A special children’s show lets children decide if they’d rather be an outlaw or a deputy. Most want to be outlaws! Everyone takes an active part in the show.

Every year the Montgomerys hold a cystic fibrosis event in honor of a dear friend who suffered with that illness. The Brad Schneider Memorial, very important to the Montgomerys, is a day when all proceeds go to someone currently fighting Cystic Fibrosis.

Dogwood Pass Roy Rogers

Frog is pleased to have a growing Roy Rogers Memory Museum.

Roy Rogers Memory Museum displays photos and movie posters along with some of Roy and Dale’s clothes and guns. Frog continues to search for Roy Rogers’ memorabilia to showcase at this western museum.

Dogwood Pass Owner Frog

“Frog” Montgomery leans on the saloon bar as he describes his dream.

That first building, the saloon, holds a nice gaming parlor and a beautiful bar.Their stage can accommodate bands or Djs. The strongest drink you can purchase there is “root beer”.

Dogwood Pass Sheriff

That bank robbery had the sheriff so confused he rode his horse backwards.

You’ll find Dr. Cochran’s office ready to help the injured right next door to the offices of Sheriff John Dillon. This sheriff can even ride his horse while sitting backwards in the saddle.

Dogwood Pass Entrance

Costumed volunteers greet visitors as they enter the gate.

This is a family venture, now aided by about 75 volunteers that help run Dogwood Pass. One thing Frog is adamant about – all voluteers must dress in authentic western costumes. Actually, Frog dresses that way all the time, so people are quite used to seeing him in town with guns in his holsters.

Volunteers find it so much fun they travel miles to get there on the weekends. They drive from Cincinnati, Columbus, Springfield, and even indiana.

Dogwood Pass Horseback Ride

Horseback rides are available for children throughout the day.

Two movies have been filmed here. “Western World” tells the story of a sherrif faced with more corruption and deceit than he thought possible. A second movie still in the process of being finished, “Brimstone Saint”, involves a preacher who became a gunslinger to stop witchcraft in his small town.

Every weekend they are open on Friday and Saturday, usually from 11 -6. Check out their special events on their Facebook page or on their webpage at www.dogwoodpass.com .

Dogwood Bathhouse

A cowboy would visit the bathhouse for a shave, haircut, and bath.

In October, they have a Haunted Trail, then in December, a Christmas tour. Since Mike and his wife live right outside the fence, he never turns anyone away that wants to visit his town.

Weekend visitors range from 300 – 1000, and tour buses frequently make stops there. That’s why Mike is planning to build an amphitheater to have even more extensive Wild West Shows.

Dogwood Mercantile

The mercantile held all the necessities for a cowboy. It was the perfect place to sit and watch a bank robbery.

If you don’t have the time to head out west, take a drive some weekend soon and visit the biggest Old West town west of the Mississippi. Mike’s a great country boy at heart and adds a personal touch by talking with everyone. You’ll feel welcome at Dogwood Pass.

Dogwood Pass is located in southern Ohio south of Chillicothe. The actual address for your GPS would be 722 Adams Road, Beaver, OH. It’s a back road trip anyway you look at it, but what would you expect going to the Old West.

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Velvet Ice Cream – A True Original Since 1914

All Ice Cream is Good…

Some is Just Better Than Others.

~Joe and Mike Dager

Velvet Mill

This old mill is now home to Velvet Ice Cream Shoppe where you can find the history of ice cream as well as a restaurant and gift shop.

Velvety smooth ice cream has been produced in Utica for over a hundred years. That’s why more than 150,000 people visit Velvet Ice Cream each year and July is a special month with free samples.

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan recognized ice cream as a delicious treat enjoyed by almost everyone and nutritious besides. So he declared July to be National Ice Cream Month.

Velvet First Home

This was the original home of Velvet Ice Cream in the basement of the Utica Ice Company.

Joseph Dager came to the United States in 1903 unable to speak any English. That didn’t stop him from following the American dream of having his own business. His dream became a reality in the basement of a confectionery in Utica in 1914.  That first ice cream was made the old-fashioned way by hand cranking. At that time, there were only three flavors: vanilla, chocolate and strawberry.

They outgrew their basement  home quickly and built a factory behind the confectionery. Then in 1960 they discovered an old gristmill, built in 1817, at the edge of town and thought it the perfect place to build a new factory. The mill was powered by an overshot water wheel, which is 18 feet in diameter and weighs 2000 pounds.

Velvet Operation

Watching Velvet Ice Cream being made shows their high standards of cleanliness.

Since 1914 the same family has been making ice cream for four generations in Utica, Ohio. They make the world a happier place one small batch at a time. Even today they make their ice cream in small batches using local cream and the finest ingredients.

Velvet Favorite Flavor

Their number one selling ice cream is Buckeye Classic, with Southern Butter Pecan running a close second.

Watching the seven steps of ice cream being made on their Factory Tour is not only free, but during July, Monday thru Friday you’ll get a free sample of ice cream as part of that tour. Only natural ingredients are used to make this smooth and creamy ice cream. It immediately goes to a freezer where the temperature is 108-110 degrees to lock in freshness.

Velvet Cow

This Jersey cow, named Velvet of course, signifies their ice cream is all made from local Jersey milk.

Here they produce over five million gallons of ice cream each year. They are the largest producer of ice cream in Ohio. It all begins with milk, cream, sugar and water in just the right proportions. Mixing in air as it freezes is essential as nearly half of the volume of ice cream is air. That’s why you have to crank homemade ice cream so long.

On this visiting day they were making Raspberry Fudge Cordial, Summertime Peach, and Moose Tracks. All delicious!

Velvet Cleaning

After each flavor is finished, the bins must be thoroughly cleaned.

Keeping everything perfectly clean is a top priority. Their employees all change to white uniforms when they enter the factory area. Employees throughout the grounds seemed perfectly happy to be working at Velvet.

After each flavor is finished, the machines must be cleaned. What remains in the machines is placed in red buckets to be picked up later by local hog farmers. Pigs like everything except the mints in mint chocolate chip. They leave those in the bottom of the trough.

Velvet Mill Museum

To honor the old mill, there is a Mill Museum, which displays tools used there years ago.

Visit the Milling Museum to view the reconstructed Ye Old Mill, which began running in 1817. When fire destroyed the old mill in 1986, the family rebuilt it. However, the actual mill wheel is still the original.

Velvet Ice Cream Shoppe

Happy employees patiently give out samples of ice cream until you find your favorite.

Before you leave, you’ll want to stop at Ye Old Mill, where you’ll find their ice cream parlor. Perhaps you’ll want to have a sandwich followed by the freshest ice cream you’ve ever tasted. No matter what their age, everyone enjoys ice cream.

Their largest sundae carries the name “The Feed Bin” and should serve 4-6 hungry people. It contains 14 scoops of ice cream covered with four sauces, bananas, crushed nuts and cherries. Come hungry for that one.

Velvet Trail and Playground

Children enjoy the playground, while nearby walking trails give you a chance to walk off some of that delicious ice cream.

Velvet Pond

The pond offers fishing with their Buckeye Tree Grove on the left side.

Afterwards, perhaps you might want to take a short walk on their Nature Trail that follows an old canal. It’s a chance to walk off some of that delicious ice cream. Or relax by the side of the catch-and-release fishing pond, where you’ll find ducks to feed. There’s enough activity here for an afternoon of fun for kids of any age..

Velvet truck

Eye catching semis deliver gallons of ice cream to Ohio and surrounding states.

Visit Velvet Ice Cream during July to get a free sample right off the line Monday – Friday, 11 – 3.  Spend a yummy day discovering your favorite Velvet Ice Cream flavor.

Velvet Ice Cream is located off I-70 at Exit 132. Take Ohio 13 through Newark to Utica. Their address is 11324 Mt. Vernon Road, Utica, Ohio. It is right along Route 13 so quite easy to find. 

 

 

 

Delaware Indians Settle Schoenbrunn Village

Schoenbrunn signStep back in time nearly two hundred and fifty years to see the location of the first church and school west of the Allegheny Mountains. Along the banks of the Tuscarawas River in New Philadelphia experience historic Schoenbrunn Village.

Schoenbrunn Scouts

Scouts from Pennsylvania came to see if this would be a great place to settle.

A group of Christian Delaware Indians arrived from Pennsylvania with Moravian missionary, David Zeisberger, in 1772. They came by invitation of Chief Netawatwes, head of the Turtle Tribe in the Tuscarawas Valley of Ohio.

Schoenbrunn David Zeisberger

This portrait of David Zeisberger hangs in their museum.

David was born in Moravia, which is now part of the Czech Republic. His parents immigrated to Georgia to become missionaries. They sent David to school in Holland, but harsh conditions there caused him to flee to the United States to join his parents.

The family moved to Pennsylvania, where David began preparing for his calling as a missionary to the Indians. He studied their language and learned the traditions of the tribe. Often considered a genius, many called Zeisberger the Apostle of the Indians.

Schoenbrunn Guide

A guide welcomed visitors as he strolled through the reconstructed village.

Near a big spring, deep in the woods, a settlement was established called ‘Beautiful Spring’ by the  Delaware Indians, but translated into ‘Schoenbrunn’ by the Germans. This provided a safe place for the Delaware Indians who had converted to the Moravian faith. Religious services were an important part of each day.

Schoenbrunn Indians

These young men both had Indian blood – one Iroquois and the other Delaware. The glass beads they wore served as early travelers’ checks.

From 1772-1777, this village housed approximately 300 people. The only white people there were Zeisberger, his assistant missionary and the missionary’s wife. The remainder of the village consisted of Christian Delaware Indians.

The village had a short five-year existence due to pressure from both Delaware Indians, and frontiersmen wanting to settle in Ohio. Originally the village contained about forty buildings, but over time these buildings were destroyed, the land was farmed, and all traces removed of the settlement.

The people of Tuscarawas County wished to commemorate this development. Maps, letters and the original diaries of Zeisberger led them to the general area where the town existed.  After extensive research and archaeological excavations, the sites of the school and church were discovered and rebuilding of Schoenbrunn began in 1927.

Schoenbrunn Museum Tools

Museum exhibits display tools used during the early days of Schoenbrunn.

At the entrance stands a museum filled with historic exhibits and an excellent video explaining the history of Zeisberger and the founding of Schoenbrunn Village. Here you will find tools the Delaware Indians used, the original school bell, and books written by Zeisberger. These included a translation of the Four Gospels into Delaware Indian language.

Schoenbrunn Herb Garden

An herb garden provided their medicine. Most had confidence in the medicine man’s healing.

Today, Schoenbrunn contains seventeen reconstructed buildings, including the church and the school on their original sites. The location of the cemetery has also been discovered, while  the stones were created in the 1920s. The Moravians had used identical wooden crosses on all graves because they felt all were equal in death.

Schoenbrunn Candle Makers

Two Moravian women had the heavy task of making candles by dipping them fifty or sixty times.

The candlemakers in the Davis cabin actually still make all the candles used throughout the village. They were made of pure beeswax in those early days, to signify the purity of Christ. The Davis cabin served as home to a Native American, his wife and four children. The walls in many of the cabins were whitewashed in order to reflect the candle light.

Schoenbrunn School with volunteers

Costumed volunteers meandered in front of the school where both boys and girls were educated.

Their schoolhouse sat in the center of the village where both boys and girls received instruction in their native Delaware language. Two doors entered the building – one for the girls to use, and one for the boys. In 1775, there were approximately one hundred children being educated.

Schoenbrunn Wordworking

Children enjoyed watching a wood-maker finish a leg for a bench. He also served as the interpreter for the village.

Anton cabin served as home to the village interpreter, making it easier for the whites and various Indian tribes to communicate with each other. This Delaware Indian also was talented in woodworking, making benches and repairing spinning wheels and wooden door hinges. Building a cabin took twenty-three days.

Everything in their community from school and church to their burial in God’s Acre was divided into what they called “choirs”. The young men and boys were placed together, the young women and girls, and then older men and older women. They did not congregate as families or get buried as such.

Schoenbrunn cooking fire

The missionary’s wife cooked meals here for her husband and David Zeisberger, a bachelor.

Authentically dressed volunteers, who all have a passion for history, help you understand what life was like in the 18th century. They serve as storytellers to explain the daily life of the early residents as well as the importance of missions in American history.

Schoenbrunn Butter Churn

Churning butter took much time and patience.

Visit this historic Schoenbrunn Village Monday through Sunday from Memorial Day to the end of August. During September and October, they are only open on Saturday and Sunday. It’s a great place for a family excursion, where you can have an enjoyable outdoor adventure while learning about the history of early America.

Schoenbrunn Village is located in Tuscarawas County at 1984 E. High Street, New Philadelphia, Ohio.  From I-77, take Exit 81 East on US 250.  Next take Ohio Exit 259 to E High Street. The village will be on the left.

National Road – Zane Grey Museum

Zane Grey Museum

The Zane Grey Museum was originally constructed to resemble a frontier fort.

Three pieces of history are superbly woven together at the National Road – Zane Grey Museum between New Concord and Zanesville, Ohio along old Route 40. Learn about the road to the West, famous author Zane Grey, and Zanesville potteries.

Way back in 1811, Ebenezer Zane discussed with George Washington the need for a road across the newly settled country. Washington agreed it was vital to the future of the country so proclaimed, “Open a wide door, and make a smooth Way.” That began Zane’s Trace, which became part of the National Road.

Zane Grey Crossing

Diorama sections show their difficult work in constructing The National Road over streams.

The museum presents a detailed 136′ diorama depicting life on the original National Road, often called “The Main Street of America”. All the figures are hand made from clay and accurate down to the tiniest detail.  The first road was dirt, followed by the Corduroy Road made of logs, making it very rough. Eventually a stone foundation was in place with crushed stone on the top, and finally bricks

Zane Grey Ferries

Ferries took wagons and supplies across the Ohio River.

Every mile a stone mile marker gave travelers information on mileage to various towns along the way. A Gunter Chain, 66′ long, was used to measure the distance of one mile time and time again. If you moved the 66′ chain X 80 times = 5,280 ‘, the distance of one mile. The Gunter Chain also measured the distance across the road – 66’.

Zane Grey Diorama

Logs formed the Corduroy Road, a rough stretch to travel.

After WWI, Dwight Eisenhower led a convoy of trucks across the National Road, and during WWII, General Eisenhower discovered the Autobahn in Germany. When he became president he felt it of high importance to develop better highways in America. Thus began our interstate highway system.

Zane Grey Stop

The 10 Mile House provided refreshments along the highway. Baker’s Motel is located on that spot today.

Pearl Zane Grey, being born in Zanesville, traveled this road frequently. His early writing attempts were squelched by his father, who insisted that Zane attend the University of Pittsburgh so he could be a dentist and follow in his father’s footsteps. Zane did graduate with a degree in dentistry after enjoying a time of pitching his great curve ball on the college baseball team, where he enjoyed a full baseball scholarship.

When he married Dolly, her encouragement and editing abilities, along with a nice inheritance, made it possible for Zane to abandon his dental practice and begin following his passions…writing and fishing.

Zane Grey Study

Zane Grey wrote his books by hand in his study, surrounded by native American items he had collected in his travels.

His first book was Betty Zane, the story of a young girl who helped save Fort Henry. But it was Riders of the Purple Sage that put popularity into Grey’s writings. His books sold like hot cakes. Zane wrote all his stories in long hand, then his wife, Dolly, typed them and had them published. Many were turned into movies.

Zane enjoyed fishing more than anything else and spent over 300 days a year at that sport. He split the money from the books with Dolly, and he spent his half on fishing, boats, and travel. When he traveled out West, he filled his tablets with descriptions of the scenes he saw, for use in his stories.

Zane Grey fishing

Big-game fishing was the real passion in his life.

The only books that sold more copies than Grey’s at that time were the Bible and school primers. Hemingway was quite jealous of Grey, not because of his successful writing career, but because of his great fishing ability. Zane’s love of the great out-of-doors can be seen in all of his books through his detailed descriptions. 

Now how does the fantastic collection of pottery fit in? The perfect clay for making pottery could be found in this area quite easily – in dirt roads, such as the National Road, which had clay as their base. Potters would go out to the road and dig up a small portion of clay to make a vase or bowl. This became known as a “potters’ hole”. Thus the term we use today for a hole in the road – “pot hole”.

Zane Grey Pottery

This is a small section of the Zanesville Pottery collection on display.

But the collection goes beyond those humble beginnings and includes the work of over 132 potteries in the Zanesville area. Thousands of workers contributed to this large display, which was originally the collection of Mr. Downey, the owner of Conn’s Potato Chips. Upon his death, half of his pottery was given to the Zane Grey Museum for display, while the other half is in the Zanesville Museum of Art.

Zane Grey Model T

Find surprises along the way like this Model T Ford.

Next time you travel along the Old National Road, today’s Route 40, stop at the National Road – Zane Grey Museum and watch a film about the life of Zane Grey. The knowledgeable guides will lead you down the road to books, movies, pottery…and some surprises along the way.

National Road – Zane Grey Museum is located on old Route 40 about a half mile from I-70, Exit 164, Norwich Exit. The museum is located between New Concord and Zanesville, Ohio.

 

AMA – Motorcycle Hall of Fame Springtime is the Perfect Time to Get Out and Ride

AMA Museum Sign

This sign along I-70 directs motorcycle enthusiasts to the AMA Hall of Fame.

April’s “ AMA Get Out and Ride! Month” seems the perfect time to visit the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. What stories the bikes tell and history they hold.

AMA, American Motorcycle Association, serves a membership of over 200,000 with an average experience of 28 years. They own 615,000 motorcycles, which are ridden over a billion miles each year.

In 1990, AMA Hall of Fame first opened in Westerville, then moved to its present Pickerington location in 1999. Here it can easily be seen from I-70.

AMA Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame plaques surround a circular room. You’ll find familiar names there even if you’re not a motorcycle fan.

A special round room holds a plaque for each member inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. They recognize individuals who have contributed to the motorcycle sport over the years. At the entrance is a Glory Days Statue.

AMA Dirt Bikes

Dirt bikes are especially popular with the younger generation.

The displays at AMA Hall of Fame are arranged in sections according to motorcycle type: Dirt Bike, Road Racing, Motocross, Specialty and Off Road. Each one holds memorabilia from many familiar names, who are fearless, imaginative and awe-inspiring.

AMA Ashley

Ashley, AMA Associate Editor, enjoys motocross. Her favorite motocross racer is Ricky Carmichael, the winningest motocross racer of all times.

Ashley Price, Associate Editorial Director at AMA, gave an excellent overview. She had a passion for motorcycles, having gone to Motocross training daily at the age of 14 while being home schooled.

Her days were carefully monitored regarding food, gym and riding time. She only slipped up once on her food. At Walmart, she purchased a box of Wheat Things. Punishment – another six or seven miles of bike drills.

Those years of competition have given Ashley determination in life situations. “The camaraderie of family and friends has given many memories. I’ve learned life lessons in working hard to accomplish goals.”

AMA Adventure bike 2

Adventure bikes are the most popular today as they can ride in the street and off road.

Riding a bike in racing takes more strength and determination than it appears. It is one of the most difficult sports in the world. At the end of a race, riders are exhausted. It takes a great combination of man and bike to win consistently.

AMA Mechanics

Let’s not forget the mechanics, as their role in a race is crucial.

If you like motorcycles, you’re sure to find something of interest at AMA Hall of Fame, which is packed with motorcycle history. With 117 bikes, there’s a great variety. It’s not possible to describe all of them here, so you’ll have to visit yourself. Most were donated by names familiar in the biking world.

AMA Oldest Bike

Currently, the oldest bike at the museum is this 1914 Harley-Davidson, one of the earliest dirt bike racers.

A 1914 Harley claimed the honor for the oldest bike at the museum. Most popular now are adventure bikes. They can go on the street or easily off road due to their special tires. They’re not for competition, just enjoyment.

AMA Toy Bikes 2

Downstairs at the AMA Hall of Fame, there is a nice selection of motorcycle toys.

Downstairs, Motorcycle Toys and Collections stir up some memories, or watch a biking video. “Why We Ride” played during a recent visit and centered around family fun involved with making great memories. “It’s a most interesting, amazing adventure,” quipped one lady aged 78, heading for 100.

AMA Wooden toy bike

This wooden motorcycle overlooking the patio, gives children a chance to sit on the seat or in the side carrier.

Riders feel this is a great way to make friends. Children join in at an early age on their dirt bikes. Charity work frequently happens with motorcycle groups. Everything from Cancer Runs to Christmas Toy Drives occur around the world.

The AMA sets up a Gypsy Tour series for their members. Its purpose is to have a rally and provide a memorable experience for everyone involved. Motorcycle friends are a close knit family, where men, women and children enjoy the thrill of riding and racing together.

If you are passionate about motorcycles, AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame would be a great family outing. Then, Get Out and Ride!

The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame can be found just off I -70 at Exit 112, Route 256. Take a left of Blacklick Eastern Road and another left on Yarmouth. Watch for their posted signs to 13515 Yarmouth Drive. Enjoy the ride!

Famous Endings Museum – Largest Funeral Memorabilia Collection in the World

famous-endings

Toland-Herzig Funeral Home in Dover features Famous Endings Museum.

What better place to have a Famous Endings Museum than a funeral home. In Dover at 803 N. Wooster Avenue, the Toland-Herzig Funeral Home has an outstanding display of funeral memorabilia from people who have made a difference in the world.

endings-entrance

The entrance to Famous Endings gives a glimpse of celebrities.

The staff hopes that their presentation will perhaps bring back memories, or even a smile to your face, as you see some of those people who had a great influence on our lives.

famous-endings-cafe-setting

This cafe setting provides a place for visitors to sit and listen to John’s stories.

Here you will find the largest privately owned collection of funeral memorabilia in the world. Everything from funeral programs, photos, newspaper clippings, and prayer cards can be viewed. Most of the memorabilia is displayed in one large room, but it has spread out to the hallways and other small rooms throughout the funeral home.

john-herzig

An excellent video by John Herzig helps explain his collection.

This is a rather recent collection started by John Herzig back in 1996. Up to that time, he had an autograph collection, but that was soon to change when he sent a request for the autographed picture of the late Joe Lewis, the boxer.

When he received the package in the mail, there was more than what he asked for. It included not only a picture, but also the program of the funeral ceremony. That was the beginning of his new hobby, which has evolved to over  2,000 pieces of funeral memorabilia on display today.

famous-nasa

NASA exhibit features Ohio astronauts with Judith Resnik highlighted.

Many funerals they actually attended under special circumstances. When John heard of the public funeral of Jack Kevorkian in Michigan, he suggested to his wife, Joyce, that perhaps it would be a nice weekend for a trip to Michigan. The next day after arrival, he told her they were going to the White Chapel Mausoleum for funeral services at 9:30. Her response was, “Have you lost your mind?”

His wife has patiently endured his many attempts to find funeral programs and memorabilia. Learn more about her tolerance as you hear about the 50th birthday trip to New York City that he promised her, or their stop at a celebrity filled cemetery in L.A. on the way back from a cruise. Joyce won’t soon forget these special trips.

john-glenn

The family attended the funeral of John Glenn and display memorabilia.

The trips to funerals are usually family affairs. Often Joyce accompanies him but recently his son, Troy, went with his dad to a couple memorable memorial services for John Glenn and Muhammad Ali. Their programs are already in place at the museum.

troy-and-jackie-robinson-1

John and Joyce’s son, Troy, especially enjoys the sports heroes.

John Herzig enjoys hearing stories about people who have changed the world in some way. Those are the kind of people he has honored in his Famous Endings Museum. “Each person has a story to share.”

Among his favorites are people who helped others. They weren’t big Hollywood or TV stars, but people who made a difference… and he has their funeral programs! Millard Fuller,  a self-made millionaire at the age of twenty-nine, is a prime example. Fuller gave all his money away to start Habitat for Humanity.

william-greatbatch

This large photo of William Greatbatch, inventor of the pacemaker, is surrounded by memorabilia of other inventors.

The collector placed high importance on William Greatbatch, who made the cardiac pacemaker, and Eugene Polley, inventor of the TV remote control and often labeled “Father of the Couch Potato”. This museum perhaps could be called the Influential Hall of Fame.

famouc-endings-steve-jobs

Steve Jobs is showcased in their entrepreneur display.

Famous Endings Museum has special admiration for Frank Inn and his love of animals. He trained popular animals such as Arnold the pig, Lassie and Benji, who he saved from a shelter. Frank’s daughter recalls, “He could train animals to do things that most people didn’t believe.” Some of those favorite animals were cremated and buried with Inn.

remote-control

Invented by Eugene Polley, the first remote, Flash-matic Tuning, definitely changed our lives.

Some of visitors’ favorite exhibits are memorabilia from people who made us smile in the past, such as Captain Kangaroo and Mister Rogers. Comedian Leslie Neilson carried his sense of humor to his funeral. The packages of Kleenex he prepared for his funeral are on display there. They carried the inscription: “Stop crying. This is supposed to be a fun night. Love and laughs, Leslie.”

 

lincoln-lantern

This lantern from Lincoln’s funeral carriage has become one of John’s favorite treasures.

Several times a year, John schedules a “Night at the Museum” where he features a special person or group of people. Visit their Facebook page or website for details. The museum is free and open for visitation Monday – Friday from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. It’s one of those places you have to see to believe and appreciate.

famous-endings-ripleys

Ripley’s Believe It or Not featured Herzig’s Famous Endings Museum.

Famous Endings Museum has been featured on Ripley’s Believe It or Not, and is a frequent stop for tour coaches…especially Mystery Tours! This museum makes us look at death differently. As Randy Pausch wrote about funerals, “You can either be an Eeyore or a Tigger.” At Famous Endings Museum, they honor the contributions and memories,  as they celebrate the lives of famous people.

Visit Famous Endings Museum in Dover just off I-77 at Exit 83. Take Ohio 211 east/ Tuscarawas Avenue. Turn left on Slingluff Avenue and then right on Wooster Ave. The museum is on the left side of the street.

David Warther Preserves History of Ships in Ivory

david-warther-sign

This sign on Route 39 signals that you have arrived at David Warther Carvings.

Following in his family’s footsteps, David Warther excels as a maritime artist. The detailed work takes time and patience to create the beautifully finished ships that can be found at this exhibit. Three years ago, David decided to open a museum to display room after room of his carved masterpieces. David Warther Carvings is located on Route 39 between Sugarcreek and Walnut Creek.

david-warther-early-ships

David began making ships from scraps of wood when he was six years old.

His passion for carving began as a child. He wanted to do what his grandfather, Ernest Warther, did – make carvings. But his object wasn’t trains, like his grandfather, but ships instead.At the age of six, he took scraps of wood to make his first ship. His mother kept that ship all these years and it is on display in the museum today.

david-warther-high-school

At the age of 17, he carved from ivory his first ship, a coast guard cutter.

As a junior in high school he finished his first carving the USCGC Eagle, using ivory, ebony, abalone pearl and walnut. The Eagle was used as a training cutter for officers in the United States Coast Guard. David’s love of ships continued to grow.

david-warther-stallion-of-rouen

The Vikings used the Stallion of Rouen as a trading ship between France and the waters of the Mediterranean. David uses the world map to point out locations for his maritime stories.

Not only can you see impressive ships with scrimshaw engraving at this exhibit, but David tells the history of the times and points out special features on different carvings. The displays are grouped according to a time-line for the ships, from ancient history of Egypt in 3000 B.C. to modern times.

david-warther-pharoahs-ship

This carving depicts an early royal ship for an Egyptian Pharaoh.

A carving of the royal ship of an Egyptian Pharaoh recalls the story of its discovery in 1952 packed away in a box in the Great Pyramid of Egypt. It took twenty years to put it back together and it’s now displayed in a museum at the Great Pyramid. They buried the ship with the King as they believed it was needed to take him to the next world.

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Visitors were shown this special hand-made tool, which is used for making strands of ivory.

When assembling the ships, the parts are held together with tiny ivory pegs. First David must make strands of ivory so he has ample pegs to hold the pieces together. This is a time consuming task as it takes over an hour to make a ten inch strand of ivory, which is about twice the thickness of a human hair.

The strand is filed in a handmade, wooden groove until it is just the right thickness. This is a tedious task as the strands are so thin that breakage often occurs. Once two pieces are fastened together, the end is sanded so smooth that you have to look closely to see the peg. His grandfather, a quiet and soft spoken character, used this same method for the ivory pegs in his steam engines.

It takes about six months to complete each ship and David tries to do two each year. Right now he is working on #85. Each ship is made of ivory with ebony highlights and abalone pearl in the base.

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David is surrounded by his ships as he gives a guided tour.

The Warther family now has four generations of carvers: great-grandfather, grandfather, David and his son. David’s another Warther who does not sell his ivory carvings. They are for viewing only.

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The third largest set of elephant tusks in the United States frames a doorway between timeline rooms.

But these ships are just a hobby for David. He earns a living by making parts for musical instruments from ivory of the wooly mammoth. Parts for violins and guitars are quite popular and are shipped around the world.

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An attractive thirty foot high clock tower pavilion has an observation deck to view surrounding Walnut Valley.

The museum is located on Ohio 39 between Sugarcreek and Walnut Creek. Their winter hours are 10:00 – 4:00 Wednesday through Saturday. Ivory and ebony live together in perfect harmony at David Warther Carvings.

 

 

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