Upcoming Holiday Events & How to be a Good Ancestor

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Kelso Post

A Publication of the Kelso House Museum
December 2015

Upcoming Holiday Events

Township Christmas Tree Lighting

November 29, 4-6pm
Brimfield Town Hall Park

The Brimfield Historical Society and Kelso House Museum will be having a table at the annual Brimfield Township Christmas Tree Lighting. We will have information relating to our upcoming events and will be providing a craft for the children. Feel free to stop by and say hi!

Holiday Gathering

December 3, 6-8pm
McCormick Heritage Room

Join members and guests to start your holiday season off right by spending an evening at the Kelso House Museum. Punch and appetizers will begin at 6pm, followed by dinner at 6:30pm. The Historical Society will provide a main course, dinner rolls, and beverages. Guests are requested to bring a salad, vegetable dish, or dessert to share. There will be a short program following the meal.

Christmas Family Fun Day

December 5, 10am-12Noon
McCormick Heritage Room

Start off your holiday celebrations at the Brimfield Historical Society for a morning of fun-filled activities.
  • Free make & take crafts and games for kids of all ages!
  • Bring your camera for photos with Santa!
  • Refreshments provided & Much More!

Holiday Tea

December 12, 12Noon-4pm
McCormick Heritage Room

Please join us for the Holiday Tea at the Kelso House Museum. Enjoy a traditional wintertime tea, with musical entertainment, friends, and homemade luncheon with desserts. There will be a Chinese-style auction to help offset the cost of the event.
The price is $10 for members and $15 for non-members. The first seating is from 12Noon to 1:30pm; and the second seating is from 2:30-4pm.

The Museum requests that you call 330-673-1058 to make reservations.

Photo Credit: Kelso House Museum Collection
This article below was published in the Akron Beacon Journal on Saturday 7 November 2015.
Gretchen Quinn, former intern and current Board Member, created a program with our Curator as part of her experience and work with the Historical Society.
She recently presented an abbreviated version of this same program, titled "How to be a Good Ancestor" and the article below was written about it.  

Family Stories Make Heirlooms More Valuable

By Mary Beth Breckenridge, Beacon Journal home writer

I have a fairly substantial collection of dishes, table linens and other whatnots passed down to me by family members over the years.

What I don’t have is a very good memory about where they all came from.

There are exceptions, of course, most notably a blue-and-white plate that was part of the set my aunt always used on her Thanksgiving table. It holds happy memories of our big, loud, loving family gatherings.

But the rest? I wish I knew.

It’s not that I didn’t appreciate the gifts. It’s just that I assumed I’d remember. 

I didn’t.

Apparently that kind of mistake is common, which is why Gretchen Quinn presented a program not long ago to the Stow Historical Society that included tips for preparing your family heirlooms to be passed along to descendants.

Quinn serves on the board of trustees of the Brimfield Historical Society, where she did an internship while she was pursuing her master’s degree in library and information science. She and Judi Allen, the society’s curator, developed the suggestions that Quinn included in her presentation and recently shared with me.

Her first recommendation: Write things down. Note anything of relevance — for example, what the object is, where it came from and how it came into your family. 

Don’t think that just talking to the recipient about the item is enough, she said. Especially if that person is young, the item might not be as meaningful to him or her right now as it probably will be in the future. By then, you might not be around to repeat the story.

Quinn used her own experience as an example. At her bridal shower, her grandmother passed along a set of teacups she had received when she was married, along with an explanatory note. “That note is something I value almost as much as the actual glassware,” Quinn said.

Photos are commonly passed down through families, but they’re often unlabeled. Quinn recommended writing the names of the people on the backs of the photos — in pencil, which won’t harm the photograph the way ink can. It’s helpful to include anything else you know, such as birth, wedding or death dates, where the people lived or the place where the photo was taken. 

That information may not be important to you, but members of future generations who are interested in genealogy will thank you, she said.

Whatever you’re passing along, be sure to preserve it properly so it lasts for generations to come, Quinn said. How best to store something depends on the item, and there are far too many possibilities to include here. But Quinn said libraries and historical societies often have books and other resources on how to protect specific items.

And don’t limit the things you pass down to, well, things. They can be stories or family traditions, she said. Just be sure to write them down, or perhaps making a voice recording or a video with your phone.

I think I’ll jot down a few memories to keep with my plate, so maybe someday my descendants will know that we ate Thanksgiving dinners in the basement and, in later years, the garage; that we sat on antique chairs my uncle had refinished at a table with a plywood top big enough to seat a couple of dozen people; and that one year my brother accidentally squirted whipped cream across the table, right at my cousin’s girlfriend.

That’s stuff worth remembering.

Holiday Office Hours

The Museum & Office will be closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.
The Museum will be open by appointment only on November 28, and from December 19 to February 4 for storage and exhibit renovations. 

Other News

  • Special Thanks to Mike Kostensky & the staff of Mike's Place, the Window Box Florist, and everyone else who helped make this years Election Day Dinner possible.
  • Thank you to everyone who has purchased or renewed their 2016 Memberships, we will continue to collect memberships either by mail or at our upcoming Holiday events.
Copyright © 2015 Brimfield Historical Society & Kelso House Museum, All rights reserved.

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