December 5, 2017


The Spencer County Historical Society met on Tuesday, December 5, 2017, in the Rockport Library Genealogy Room.


The meeting was called to order by the president at 6:32 PM with 13 members present.


The minutes from the last meeting were read and approved.


The treasurer’s report was given. 


The treasurer mentioned the Society had received a third donation through the U. S. Bank Employee Giving Program


The treasurer gave a cost analysis of the last newsletter that was sent out in a 9x12 envelope as compared to the usual 6x9 envelope.  It was sent out in the larger envelope due to its size and to save time.  The 9x12 envelope cost $1.60 to mail (envelope + postage) and the 6x9 envelope cost $1.03 to mail (envelope + postage).  It was decided that the Society would stick with the 6x9 envelope.  In an effort to save some time, a member mentioned that it would be helpful to have a self-inking stamp to put on the return address rather than having to print out labels each time which causes wear and tear on the printer.  A motion was made and seconded to purchase a self-inking stamp.  The motion carried.


The e-mail from the Rockport Parks Board concerning the shelter house at the Rockport City Park was discussed.  The board asked if the Society had any information about the historical nature of the shelter house.  In talking with the member of the Board, a Society member mentioned that in all the research that had been done about the Village, nothing had been found where the shelter house was described.  Several members had fond memories of using the shelter house for family reunions in their younger days and would like to see it preserved.  The main concern seems to be the flooring which consists of slabs of sandstone and is now a safety hazard.


The secretary informed the group the Society had received a donation of a 1931 plat map of Rockport from David G. Wells that had been drawn by his uncle, George Wells, who was the father of a present member.  It shows the different additions to Rockport and would make an excellent addition to the Genealogy Room.  The secretary had checked with someone about the cost of having the map framed.  It would be $95.00 plus tax for a 40” x 24” black frame with non-reflective glass.  A motion was made and seconded to purchase a frame with non-reflective glass.  The motion carried.  It was also stated that a nameplate or card should be included to give the donor recognition.


The results of the September Historian of the Year Banquet were discussed.  It was a successful, well-attended banquet with 105 in attendance.  The only problem that arose was the 35 people who called for reservations after the deadline.  This makes it hard to turn in numbers to the ladies who are fixing the food.  Something needs to be decided on how to handle this situation before the next banquet.  A member had a suggestion of charging late callers $10.00 to listen to the program, but they would be unable to eat because they didn’t turn in their reservation by the deadline.  There was also a suggestion to increase the price after the deadline.


A list of nominees for the next banquet was handed out with several additions suggested.  The list was just an idea to start thinking about next year.


The president reported a member brought in maps showing original purchases of land in northern Spencer County.  He also had an 1817 map of Indiana - the first map of Indiana (before many of the counties were laid out).


The president also had several disks that had been sent to him by a member with pictures for the bicentennial book.  She had included some newspaper articles.


The president informed the Society the diary of a local photographer, Mr. Killian, had been microfilmed by the Indiana State Historical Society and the Society might be interested in obtaining a copy.


The president had talked to one of the Historian of the Year honorees about the beginning of youth baseball in the county - How did little league get started?  He asked several members about developing a history of the little league program.  It was mentioned part of that research had been done by Jerry Hargis in his book Around the Horn.


A member told some of the problems he was having with the Lincoln Discovery multi-use trail that is to be made from Santa Claus to Lincoln City.  The state is to replace an historical marker indicating the place where Abraham Lincoln made a speech in 1844.  The report had 21 mistakes and they have since corrected 11 items.  He is trying to get the final corrections made by December 15.


The president asked the group if they would be interested in viewing some of Clayton Spurlock’s videos at a meeting.  It was suggested that we could possibly have a short meeting and then go to the conference room in the basement to view the video.


A member and others have been searching for tombstones in the Old Christian Cemetery behind the Methodist Church in Gentryville, Indiana.  They were using directions written by George Honig in his family bible.  The directions were pretty accurate and they had found some stones that had been missing for over 100 years.


A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting.  The motion carried.  The meeting adjourned at  8:18 PM.


There will be no meeting in January.


The next meeting will be February 6, 2018 at 6:30 PM in the Genealogy Room.