The Delaware County Historical Society has a new look — and more.
The colorful sign that unveiled Oct. 18 at the 157 E. William St. home of the Cryder Historical Center and Nash House Museum represents a historical society that is undergoing significant changes.
The most public of these changes, at least so far, is probably the donation by the Porter family of the historic Meeker Homestead and Garth Oberlander barn to The Society.
Carolyn and the late Tom Porter operated Garth’s Auctions at Stratford Road and U.S. 23 for 30 years. The Porters’ gift includes one of the oldest houses in Delaware County — the Meeker house was built in 1823 — an enormous stone-end barn and about seven acres.
Jeff and Amelia Jeffers, who took over the auction company when the Porters retired, plan to relocate the business to larger, more convenient quarters. When that happens, The Society will assume occupancy of the property and a second sign, identical to the one on East William Street in all respects but size, will be erected. (The second sign is larger, so that it can be seen by U.S. 23 traffic.)
Plans are to open the Meeker Homestead as a museum and education facility, and the Oberlander barn as a meeting place and as a rentable event space.
The sign’s design is a replica of the society’s new logo — Delaware County Historical Society Our History, Our Heritage — currently in use on the society’s website, www.delawareohiohistory.org, as well as on its stationery, brochures and all other items.
The logo design is the work of artist Cynthia Croce Smith of Quickdraw Graphic Design. Waterford Signs Inc. did the production work.
Society board members recently drew up a new marketing/communication plan in acknowledgement of the unprecedented challenges and opportunities before them.
Donna Meyer, a member of the Society board and chairwoman of the marketing committee, said planning for the new sign continued for several months. A sign was necessary at the former Garth’s location, and members decided to replace the old sign on East William Street, both for consistency’s sake and because that sign was overdue for an update.
The 200-year-old Oberlander barn is an iconic local structure, Meyer said, and committee members felt its image was of “utmost importance to use as a branding tool for the organization.”
Society president Brent Carson pulled the cover from the new sign, to applause from board members.
Carson said the Historical Society is excited about “all of our friends at the Nash House and our new location, so this is about the beginning of good things to come. A way to enhance our efforts all over Delaware County.”