Toledo’s history merits museumWritten by Edward Slack | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Toledo’s history from its earliest times to present day is rich, varied and certainly worthy of celebration. Toledo is one of the few cities in Ohio lacking a historical museum, and its creation is an idea long overdue.
Five men met last week to discuss the concept. Attending were Michael Drew Shaw, director of the Skyway Visitors Center project; Fred Folger, retired teacher for Washington Local Schools; Rolf Scheidel, attorney; Dr. Ernest Weaver, UT professor emeritus and board member of the Maumee Valley Historical Society; and this writer.
Teamwork is vital to the creation of such a project, and partnership an essential ingredient. Mr. Shaw is joining me in the creation of the museum. Our collaboration has the goal of placing the museum within the Skyway Center complex and aggressively promoting it regionally in a variety of ways and globally on www.skyway.com, Skyway Center’s new Web site, which will launch early in 2006. Discussions are preliminary pending further meetings, consultations with interested parties, and many other concerns.
Early in 2005, I began contributing columns to
Toledo Free Press focusing on Downtown revitalization from the perspective of a native Toledoan, and the need for retail development driven by a growing population base. Months of interviewing civic leaders, executive directors, and local investors have provided ample opportunity to learn what exists Downtown and future possibilities. One theme became apparent: Toledoans want change, but fight change at every step.
Collaboration between Skyway Center and the Toledo Historical Museum in the Marina District can represent two signature pieces in the overall picture of a destination place for Toledoans, visitors throughout the nation, and the world.
The Museum can be envisioned as a non-profit organization with a three-fold goal:
To present exhibits and re-enactments that are historically accurate.
To provide for the educational enrichment of visitors young and old.
To promote activities that are factual, informative and entertaining.
The mission statement draft reads: ”Our continuing goal is to present and preserve the history of the City of Toledo, Ohio, from the past, to the present, and for posterity. The display of artifacts, archival documents and exhibits, with the addition of historical re-enactments, are designed to provide the public with expressions of Toledo’s rich and varied history.”
We, the citizens of Toledo, can be proud of our history and build cooperatively for the future, if we so choose.