GREEN It has been a busy year for historic projects in Green and another busy year is ahead.
During the Oct. 27 historic preservation meeting, several ongoing and future projects were discussed. The city is invested in retaining historic buildings and looking for ways to expand knowledge and understanding of events of the past.
Green Mayor Gerard Neugebauer gave a brief update on the future of the Lichtenwalter Schoolhouse following an Aug. 9 fire, which was ruled arson.
He said the city had a structural engineer inspect the walls and ruled they had survived because they were three bricks thick. The inspection revealed it is possible to rebuild.
Neugebauer said the city has been doing a lot since the fire, but it has been a slow process.
He said there needs to be a community discussion to discuss the plans for the schoolhouse moving forward and how it can be utilized by the community.
The plan for now is to clean out the basement and shore up the walls for winter. A possible temporary roof may be put on the structure to help preserve it during the winter months.
"I think things look good," Neugebauer said.
Neugebauer said he has had many companies approach him about how they can help with the schoolhouse. All services and supplies to prepare it for winter are being donated and will come at no cost to the city.
The city is expected to obtain insurance money from the fire, but it is unclear how much that money will cover in repairs.
"The brick walls are just brick walls," Neugebauer said. "Inside was the history."
Lost in the fire were many historic items including desks, chalkboards and artifacts.
Neugebauer said people have approached him about finding items to fill the schoolhouse, with and he said items may be found from all over the United States.
"It is really sad about what happened to that schoolhouse, but it is really neat when the community responds to something like that," Neugebauer said.
Klinefelter Cemetery is likely not noticed by many, but it is located at the intersection of Arlington Road and Nimisila Road.
It is not an active cemetery and Neugebauer said several University of Akron students, along with several Green High School science students, plan to map out the cemetery next year and dig deeper into its history.
Any ongoing effort to find someone to live and utilize the Hartong Farmstead in Southgate Park may be close to a deal. The farmstead is one of the oldest structures in the city and recently four proposals were received for it.
The city purchased the 205-acre Southgate Park in 2006 and received a $1.2-million land grant from Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) that same year. The stipulations of the grant funding restricted what could be done with the land in the park. The restrictions were set in place to ensure the historic land was properly preserved.
Neugebauer said OPWC originally said no to all four proposals, but councilman Justin Speight has gone down to Columbus and met with OPWC about the proposals. The use that the city believes will be accepted is called Heroes at Hartong and it will serve former first responders, veterans and former military. Those individuals would be able to interact with the horses there, which have a great calming effect.
"It is not a done deal yet, but it is a use we are pretty excited about," Neugebauer said.
Rudy Christian of Christion & Sons spoke regarding the roof repair that was recently completed on the Hartong barn.
"It was a real honor to work on that barn," Christian said.
He applauded the city for preserving the structure, which dates to 1883. Christian said he spent a lot of time looking over the barn and how it was built to help him determine if the 1883 date that was on the roof was correct for when it was built. He concluded the date was correct and said normally the date on the roof doesn’t match when the barn was constructed.
Christian detailed the process it took to put a new roof on the barn, which included removing siding and replacing several beams.
Other historical projects
Green Historical Society Secretary Staci Schweikert said there are several projects the society is working on. One project is the Ohio Historical Marker Program as Schweikert would like to see more markers be placed in the city. The only marker is at the library.
Next year, the historical society hopes to host a haunted history tour around the city. Anyone with ghost stories is asking to contribute them to the historical society. The goal is to have either a bus trip or a cemetery walk next October.
The historical society will have a planning meeting 6 p.m. Nov. 21 at the Torok Center.