Did you know that Daniel Mikesell, founder of Mikesells Potato Chips, was born in Pleasant Hill, Ohio? It is believed that he was born in the house directly north of the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, which is currently the home of Jean Gilbert.
Did you know that Arcanum’s Harry Stutz, who founded the Stutz Manufacturing Company in Dayton, entered a car in the first Indy 500 in 1911, and driver Gil Anderson finished a very respectable 11th, for an American car? The Stutz car also served as the Indianapolis 500 pace car in 1912. Stutz built the car in five weeks, which he named Bearcat. Stutz was born in 1876 on a farm to Henry K. Stutz and Elizabeth Schneider. He was an automobile manufacture, entrepreneur, self-taught engineer, and innovator of the automobile industry. Arcanum can be proud of what Harry Stutz accomplished.
Did you know Arcanum had a granite and marble business at one time? According to the Weekly Times a.k.a. The Arcanum Times in later years and noted in the Sept. 28, 1899, publication that Jacob Miller bought two lots of S.S. Coons just south of the Arcanum Milling Co. lot and start his business the Arcanum Marble and Granite Works. It is also on Nov. 9, 1899, that Jacob Miller had moved the Arcanum Granite Works to his new quarters south of the Big Four Depot (which was on South Main in area of the car wash today).
Did you know there is a Ghost Town in Southern Darke County? Have you ever heard of Euphemia? There is a Euphemia-Castine Road in southern Darke County and crosses the Preble County line. The “Ghost Town” of Euphemia, Ohio, has strong ties to its nearest neighbor, Lewisburg, Ohio. Due to a couple of unfortunate circumstances, Euphemia missed some great economic opportunities and Lewisburg became a bustling town when the railroad came through. One of the neatest things in town is a blacksmith shop which is probably one of the top two most original in the nation.
Who remembers Marj Heyduck and her frequent stops at the Korner Restaurant (known also as Clark’s back then-a.k.a. Main Street Restaurant during the years and Cruizers today) before going off on the bus to her job at the Dayton newspaper office? Marj Heyduck lived in Wayne Lakes and commuted back and forth to her job at The Journal Herald (later absorbed by the Dayton Daily News) by writing an article entitled “Third and Main.” Jeff Fluty recently visited the Arcanum Wayne Trail historical Society to bring back those memories and view memorabilia that they have on Marj. Jeff reads for the Radio Reading Service to visually despaired listeners and they have followed Marj through her books. Stop by sometime and see the articles and photos on Marj that are housed at AWTHS.
Do you know how our Public Library started here in Arcanum? In 1904 a local literary organization, The Criterion Club purchased books for their club with the vision and intention of forming a library. In 1910, the Arcanum Public Library Association was formed and by 1911 a location had been found. The library opened on the second floor above the John Smith Company Store on West George Street. In 1913 the Arcanum School Board appropriated funds for the Arcanum Public Library and appointed seven trustees to serve for terms of 7 years. In 1923 the Arcanum Public Library was classified as a School District Library under state statute and received funds derived from intangible taxes. The library is still classified as a School District Library, as are most public libraries in the state.
The library has been housed in a number of locations over the years including the T.D. Smith building, the Baily Motors building, which was also the first public school building, the second floor of the Weisenbarger building, where in 1959 a fire completely destroyed the library. A very generous outpouring of money, books, and materials from the across the community, county and state allowed the library to continue to serve the community out of borrowed rooms and garages until a permanent location could be secured. Finally, in 1963 the Board of Trustees was able to purchase the Ivestor House on North Street to establish a permanent home for the library. After a year of updates to the historic house the library was ready for business in 1964. By the late 1970s it was obvious that the building could no longer house the growing collection. It was decided to add an addition to the north side of building that would increase shelf space as well as provide work and office space for the staff. The Hanes addition was dedicated Oct. 12, 1980.
The library had again outgrown its space by the early 90’s and it was decided that another larger addition was need and a large two-story addition was added to the northwest corner of the building. A groundbreaking was held Aug. 15, 1994 and after a year of construction the new addition was dedicated September 10, 1995. The library had its centennial celebration on the front lawn June 12, 2011. We are very fortunate to have such a nice library in our village.
“Did you know that every human being is created with a purpose and that they have a responsibility to not only discover their purpose but also to fulfill it?” ~Zig Ziglar
“Did you know? Every day, the heart creates enough energy to drive a truck 20 miles. In a lifetime, that is equivalent to driving to the moon and back. So, when you tell someone you love them ‘to the moon and back’ you’re essentially saying you will love them with all the blood your heart pumps your whole life, which I think is equally meaningful.” ~from The Age of Enlightenment
Vickie Rhodehamel is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with her Arcanum community column. She can be reached by calling 937-692-6188, by e-mail at email@example.com. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.