Food Rationing in Wartime America: How Clark County Helped Feed the War (Part 2)

by Sherri Goudy

By mid-May, there was a patriotic battle cry being spread across the country to “feed the world.” In Clark County and neighboring areas in Ohio, they referred to themselves as “Soldiers of the Soil” and they united to increase food production, even going so far as to plan a “more daylight” proposition, which was later denied due to conflicts with state law.

Photo 16 May 13 1917 US Feed the World

In early July, the front page of the Springfield Sunday News boasted the success of the crops by the “Home Guard.”

Photo 17 July 1 1917 Photos of gardens

Even as the successful growth of crops across Springfield, reminders continued to flood the daily news about ways to continue economizing “for the sake of your country.”  Many of these ads and articles were directed at women. The image of Uncle Sam provided weekly specials offered to help the housewife shop frugally.

Photo 18 July 13 1917 Ad I want you to keep economizing

Women were also asked to help with canning efforts, and this article from July 22, 1917 asks women to remember soldiers and donate part of their canned goods to the Red Cross.

Photo 19 July 22 1917 Housewivs canning remember the soldiers

And although a seemingly dauntless task, women were asked to consider “wheatless days” twice weekly to help with conservation efforts.

Photo 20 August 5 1917 Wheatless day recommended by health experts

By early August, food conservation was an issue asked of all citizens regardless of sex, age, or class.  In order to properly manage the wartime efforts to conserve, distribute, and transport food the US Food Administration was established on August 10, 1917.   Headed by future President Herbert Hoover, the programs established relied heavily on American’s compassion and sense of patriotism to support the war effort. The Springfield News created a section of the newspaper called “Winning the War at Home” dedicated to articles related to the efforts to conserve food.

Photo 21 August 26 1917 Us Food Admin

This particular article gives tips from the newly formed administration, as well as providing information about how each woman in the Us could become a member of the administration to assist in the efforts.

Photo 22 August 26 1917 US Food Admin bottom

Another article from “Winning the War at Home” dated September 23, 1917 shows a huge mountain of wheat to be shipped to Europe.  The headline reads “A Slice a Day Did This.”

Photo 23 September 23 1917 Winning the War A Slice A Day did this and other headlines

Ads encouraged citizens to eat more fish and oysters and save meat,

Photo 24 September 20 1917 Ad Eat Fish and Oysters

and markets provided incentives such as prizes and daily demonstrations to encourage sales during “pure food economy week.”

Photo 25 September 23 1917 Ad full page Myers Market pure food economy

By October, Springfield had formed a Food Conservation Campaign Committee and was planning to go home to home to provide educational opportunities to families.

Photo 26 October 14 1917 Food Conservation Committee

Citizens were also asked to sign pledge cards, as this political cartoon shows.

Photo 27 October 28 1917 Sign a card, help tighten belt

By November 1, 1917 more than 2,300 pledge cards had been signed because of the 400 workers in the Food Conservation Campaign.

Photo 28 November 1 1917 Clark Co Makes record in food drive

Food rationing, gardening efforts, and substitution of former staples in meal planning were difficult for families, but the efforts of local newspapers, advertising and posters, and the formation of local food boards made things a little easier.  As a result of these conservation efforts, food shipments to Europe were doubled within a year.  Springfield and Clark County played a vital role in those endeavors.

In our next blog, we will focus on how the men of Clark County became soldiers during WWI, by volunteering for service and the draft.  As always, we welcome your feedback!  Please leave a comment and let us know what you think.

Food Rationing in Wartime America: How Clark County Helped Feed the War (Part 1)

by Sherri Goudy

During the first 3 years of WWI, prior to US entering, the food supply in Europe had diminished and the allies were facing starvation.  War had transformed fields with crops into battlefields and distribution of imported foods had been halted by the irregularity of transportation. So, what could the citizens of America do for the allies in Europe, especially when food supplies in the US were short as well?

As America entered the war on April 2, 1917 the rally to increase food supply for both the US and our allies began immediately.  As was happening across the US, Springfield newspapers were flooded with daily articles asking its citizens to conserve food, increase planting, and limit their intake of meats, sugar, and grains.  Political cartoons showed images of wasteful Americans and that the world’s food shortage was on our shoulders.

Photo 1 May 16 1917 PC tighten your belt

On April 6th, the Secretary of Agriculture had asked all of America to “do his or her bit” to plant gardens wherever they could, even in vacant city lots.

Photo 2 April 6 1917 Increase food supply

City officials in Springfield immediately began plans for these Victory Gardens and to encourage “every available lot for cultivation.”

Photo 3 April 21 1917 Spfld Chamber meeting garden plans

Every man, woman and child was asked to participate in this effort to generate food supply.  President Wilson expected that each citizen would participate in the “great civilian army” doing their part to cultivate the land and proving that without their “whole-hearted services, ‘mere fighting would be useless.’”

Photo 4 April 27 1917 What Pres expects of citizens

The Boy Scouts planned a national planting day on April 21st

Photo 5 April 20 1917 Boy Scouts

and it was predicted in the Springfield paper that the War could end “in the backyard of this city” with women having the “opportunity to do her ‘bit’ in [the] garden, kitchen, and market.

Photo 6 April 22 1917 War in your backyard

By the end of April, land cultivation was in full swing, and focus began to also include conserving meats and grains and even fasting on certain days.  Tips in one article include being thrifty by “buying enough and allowing no wastage from table,” preparing meals with cheaper ingredients, and taking note of “how much of such staples as flour, sugar, milk, cooking fat, etc. Is used each week for a month and seeing if there are any ways of cutting down the quantity needed.”  Articles and advice columns covered entire pages which included menu options for “meatless days,” ways to feed a family of eight with one dollar, and “war bread” – a more economical bread, using other grains and ingredients in place of white flour.

Photo 7 April 29, 1917 Two meatless days and other headlines

Photo 8 May 6 1917 Meatless and numerous

In early May, fasting as requested by the Catholic Church in Cincinnati, was asked “for [the] good of nation.”

Photo 9 April 30 1917 3 Catholic Churches to fast

And the call for national prohibition to conserve the nations grain supplies.

Photo 10 May 13 1917 Senate food supply

Photo 11 May 13 1917 Senate food supply part 2

Everyone was concerned with the food situation in the US and abroad, and it was each person’s patriotic duty to do whatever was necessary to feed our allies.

Crop planting continued to be a major concern in May, as well as the impending issue of rural farms suffering from lack of farmers as more land was being utilized for cultivation and the draft and volunteer enlistment began.  The Secretary of Agriculture addressed these issues and wanted to ensure that men rejected from military and naval duties could be called to “agricultural service.”

Photo 12 May 4 1917 Bread Bullets will win the war

Another article on the front page of the Springfield paper asked people who were planning vacations to give up their vacation time to support the local rural farming initiative.

Photo 13 May 6 1917 War Dept bottom of page

Other articles gave advise from the local horticultural society on what crops to plant.

Photo 14 May 6 1917 War Dept bottom of page

Springfield was well known at that time as a center for manufacturing agricultural implements. The local newspaper wrote on May 6th, 1917 that “Springfield [would] play an important part in planting of grain and cultivation of crops… in the great effort to increase the food supply of the United States.”

Photo 15 May 6 1917 Spfld importance in war Raise corn and sidemeat

Please check back next week for part 2 of this post!  As always, leave a comment because we want to know what you think.

Clark County and the War Propaganda Machine: How Posters Sold the War

by Sherri Goudy

America Gave You All You Have to Give - LoC

In my last blog, we discussed how Clark County immediately began to mobilize to support the Great War.  Citizens who had been convinced of neutrality and staying out of the war “over there,” began to enlist in the army, volunteer for the Red Cross, display flags in every home and storefront, buy war bonds, and plant victory gardens all in support of the war.  But how did these ordinary citizens become inspired to take such actions?

UncleSamNeedsThatSpringfield

Up until the Cold War, the United States maintained only a small standing army, so when war broke out it was necessary to mobilize the entire country. The government needed to acquire enough people, money, and time to recruit and train troops, produce arms and equipment, and all the supplies needed to fight.

After the Declaration of War in 1917, there was an extreme urgency to joining the war in Europe.  Public support was crucial to the war effort and in order to influence the American people, the government began to promote patriotic ideas through the creation of The Committee on Public Information.  This committee established under Wilson and headed by George Creel, was the first committee solely devoted to propaganda.

Creel, a journalist, was against censorship in the media, but only to selective ends; he was strictly against publishing anything that would be considered enemy propaganda.  There was to be no publishing of anything that would negatively impact the public’s opinion about the war. The goal was to create “a publicity proposition” of which posters would be the forefront of attention.  He enlisted an “army of artists who rallied to the colors” creating beautiful patriotic images.  One of the most iconic images ever produced was James Montgomery Flagg’s “I Want You” poster.

I Want You

As head of the Committee on Public Information, Creel started a nationwide publicity campaign and as part of this he assembled a team of 75,000 public speakers known as the “Four Minute Men.” These men gave brief patriotic speeches, not lasting longer than 4 minutes, throughout the country supporting the war effort. They used rallies, parades, pamphlets, songs, and of course posters to gain support for the war.

Four Minute men - Washington poster

These posters captivated the viewer and encouraged men to enlist, women to join the Red Cross, and everyone to support the war effort through food conservation, buying war bonds, and planting Victory Gardens.  Their imagery was meant to make a person stare, to clearly see the good and evil, the suffering, and told you how you could help, how you SHOULD help.

The emotional response to these works of art was undeniable.  How could you deny the stern stare of Uncle Sam, with his finger pointing at you, telling you to join the war effort?  How could you stand by and not join the Red Cross when staring at the vision of a nurse holding an injured soldier declaring you were “The Greatest Mother in the World.” The following posters may have been used to “influence” and “sell” the war, but their imagery evokes a real emotional response even today. And they inspired citizens in every town in America, like those in Clark County, to do their part and ensure victory.

red cross 50981v

Knit your bit-red cross

Red Cross

Americans all victory loanBondsAREBombs

Boy scouts- liberty loan

Food administration

WHC - Save the Fruit Crop - Domino Sugar Ad July 1917.jpg

In my next blog, we will discuss the formation of the US Food Administration and the efforts to conserve food in America while ensuring we could feed our troops and allies.

Let us know what you think or if there is a topic related to Clark County in the Great War that you want us to write about.

Clark County and WWI: Patriotism and Support Immediately after the Declaration of War

by Sherri Goudy

On April 2, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed as he stood before Congress, “The world must be made safe for democracy!”  Just 4 days later, Congress and the House agreed and declared war on Germany.  Following a continued period of neutrality since the onslaught of WWI in 1914, the United States was immediately thrust into the war. Although no troops had been trained and no preparations had been made for this shift, Americans rallied behind Wilson, who went on to lead what was at the time the largest war-mobilization effort in our nation’s history.

The change in attitude seemed to happen almost overnight. Wilson had run for election and reelection on a platform of strict neutrality.  Even as the war became increasingly gruesome, and Americans lost their lives with the sinking of the Lusitania and later events, and even as Americans voiced public outcry at these horrific tragedies, Wilson remained steadfast.  But all that changed in the spring of 1917 with the interception of the notorious Zimmerman telegram.  The British intercepted and decoded this telegram sent from the German foreign secretary Arthur Zimmerman to the German ambassador to Mexico proposing an alliance with Mexico against the United States. When Wilson learned of this plot against the US he immediately proposed that the US should start arming its ships against German attacks and authorized the State department to make public the contents of the Zimmerman telegram.

Within a month of this revelation, the US formally declared war against Imperial Germany.  The headlines in Springfield read “State of War is Declared” and the full text of the War Resolution was published.

War Resolution

For the next few weeks, the entire nation banded in support of the United States position against Germany.  Springfield published headline after headline, daily, informing the citizens of Clark County, Ohio about national and local contributions to the war effort.  Every man, woman, child from every background and every age could contribute and was expected to do so.  They couldn’t let their country down.

The US immediately began to financially support its allied nations in their war efforts as well.  The front page of the Springfield Daily News two days after the declaration of war was made read, “Huge Loan Pledged to Allies.”  Wilson was pledging $5 billion to “assume share of common burden” with its allies.  He was ready to roll out his war program which included this loan to allied countries to help “replenish their treasuries against the drain of their military and naval efforts in the common cause against Germany.”

Wilson ready to issue bond

Wilson ready to issue bond text

Even political cartoons reflected the sentiment of financial support to the “Allied Democracy.”  On April 10, 1917 the Springfield paper published this cartoon featuring Uncle Sam wading into the ocean, with billions of dollars to loan.

PC There's plenty more where that came from $$$

Another part of Wilson’s war program included raising their military forces to a million men, and there was no shortage of support for this plan. Locals began to enlist immediately.  The day the declaration hit headlines, there was an article in the Springfield Daily News – “Local Boy Admitted to American Navy.”  “Dewey T. Walp…passed the preliminary examination for entrance to the navy at the local recruiting station recently.”  And further down, the article reads, “A number of applicants have signified their intention of becoming sailors of the seas during the last few days.”

Local Boy Navy

Wittenberg University also participated in this effort to increase the number of enlisted men. C. G. Heckert, the President of the University said that “any member of the senior class who is drafted to the Federal army or who enlists in the service, will be granted a diploma upon application.”

Wittenberg seniors enlisted will get diploma

Women also wanted to contribute to the war effort.  This headline from two days after the Declaration of War reports “American Women Eager to Make Sacrifice for Country.”

US women report for war

This article states that as many as 3 million women were preparing for some sort of service to the United States including “nursing, to take the place if necessary of men called from farms and factories, to serve on street railways and railroads, to drive trucks or do clerical work, to prepare bandages and surgical kits, to do guard and patrol duty, to care for the nation’s food supply or to fill the places of professional men, such as doctors, dentists, and chemists, who might be called to war.”

One of the organizations which was helping to educate and mobilize women was the National League for Women’s Services.  This national program had members in big cities, such as Columbus, which in turn came to towns such as Springfield to organize women there, as this article from April 11, 1917 shows.

Women organize

The actions of local men and women to enlist and organize were crucial to the support of the war effort and to making President Wilson’s war program effective.  But what could the everyday citizen do?  From conserving food, war bond drives, and displaying flags, locals had plenty of ways to demonstrate their patriotism.  But immediately after the declaration, there were two major events that happened in Springfield, Ohio which banded all of Clark County together.

Ohio Governor James Cox proclaimed that all Ohioans could unite and do something to show support to President Wilson during this crisis.  He issued a “Proclamation of Sacred Service” on April 11, 1917 to all the citizens in Ohio to gather and “lift their hearts and voices to Almighty God, that we may be divinely guided.”

Cox sacred service proclaim

Prayers, meetings for support

Above the headline for the day of the Sacred Services which read “English Guns Blow Teuton Trenches to Bits” and “What Prussian Autocracy Must Meet in Fight with Uncle Sam” were solemn sentiments asking for “Divine Guidance” and asking that the “God of Battles” still watch over the American people in the face of war and brutality.

Prayers headline topper

A few days after these services were held in Springfield and across the state and country, the “Patriotic spirit of the city” culminated in the planning for a mass meeting and parade.  Everyone was in full support of the war effort and this parade, and in fact the city expected more than 10,000 people from all over the country would come to Springfield to participate.  No one could be excluded from this patriotic demonstration, so stores and shops closed early to ensure their employees could be among the participants.

Parade and programs

Parade ad store will close to participate

The paper reported that the parade “surpasse[d] any event ever held in the city.”  More than 5,000 marchers attended, including “practically every organization, class, sect, and nationality in the city.”

Saturday Patriotic Parade

Men, women, children – every citizen came out and supported the war and Wilson’s shift from neutrality to “all in.” The attitude of the nation was reflected in the address given at that mass patriotic meeting at Memorial Hall “And now the testing time has come.  You are here tonight, men and women, who carry in your veins the mingled strains of the blood of many nations, and tonight you unite in a single-minded loyal devotion to our common country.”

Saturday Patriotic Parade, children

The great war “over there” suddenly became our war, and the nation seemed to fully support this. But what brought about this change? Was it really the attitude of every American to support this gruesome, bloody conflict?  We will discuss this further in our upcoming blog posts.

If there is a topic related to Springfield and Clark County in WWI that you want us to write about, let us know!  We want to tell the stories you want to learn more about.

Joining the Great War: A Reflection on Clark County in WWI

by Sherri Goudy

Hi everyone!  Welcome to the first post for the Heritage Center’s WWI Exhibit, and my first ever blog post!  I am an AmeriCorps member, serving local historical organizations in counties across Western Ohio.   I have been working with the Clark County Heritage Center since September, and I did a lot of the research for the WWI exhibit. I found so many great stories that defined what it was like to live in a town like Springfield, Ohio 100 years ago, during the midst of war. So without further ado, let’s dig in!

“The Great War” – it was one of the most horrific events that the US and the World had ever seen.   It changed the way wars were fought forever. Textbooks taught us about this change in tactics and we learned the names of the countries involved and famous people who led, fought, and died during this war.  But what about the everyday American who lived in “Yourtown,” USA? How did the war impact the town where we live and the people who lived there?  As the entire nation pauses to reflect on the centennial of our entry into World War I, many museums and historic places are providing answers to these questions.

Here at the Clark County Heritage Center we opened our WWI Exhibit “Global Conflict, Local Experience: Clark County Joins the Great War” a few weeks ago.  We found so many great stories through our research, and unfortunately we couldn’t present all of it in our exhibit.  So we are going to explore some of these stories that deserve to be shared through regular posts over then next year or so.  Topics will include local reaction to the entry into the war, ads and political cartoons, and articles about the patriotism that men, women, and even children demonstrated as they were asked to contribute their skills and make sacrifices for the greater good of our country.  The focus of our posts for the coming months will center on the entry into the war, which correlates to our current exhibit’s theme. Next year, we will change the focus of our exhibit to include our involvement in the war and the aftermath of the war, and our posts will evolve to discuss those topics as well.

One of the most captivating things about our research is that it didn’t just paint a picture of life in Clark County, Ohio.  We came to realize that what was happening here was happening all over the US.  Although our posts will show examples from Clark County sources, you can turn to your local newspapers and WWI propaganda and see similar ideas.  One of the main attitudes Americans wanted to remain neutral, and didn’t want any part of the European Conflict.  However, industrialization and the demand for goods internationally made isolationism impossible.  Springfield newspapers published articles daily about the increasingly volatile relations between the US and Germany (see photo 1).

DOC070

Then, on April 3rd, 1917 President Wilson’s Declaration of War was published in the Springfield Paper (see photo 2).

DOC071.jpg

3 days later, after both the Senate and House had voted to endorse the declaration of war against Germany, the United States formally entered the First World War.  During the months that followed, Clark County participated in patriotic meetings, food rationing, Red Cross support, and the draft. The local newspapers published articles and advertisements promoting women in the workforce, men to register, and proper ways to display a flag.  There were also ads to promote a “business as usual” mentality (see photo 3).

DOC072.jpg

By the summer and early fall, the draft for troops was in effect and training camps had been built in “record time” (see photo 4).

DOC073.jpg

Training camps prepared these soldiers for combat, but it was important to maintain “everyday life” as well.  As the holidays approached and soldiers were still in training at Camp Sherman in Chillicothe, efforts at home included preparing care packages and letters to boost morale.  Although newly drafted and enlisted soldiers had not seen the battlefield yet, the impact of war had made its mark.

The topics mentioned above are just a few of the subjects we will discuss more thoroughly over the coming months. If there is something you’d like to see us present, please send us a comment.  We want to tell the stories that matter to you!

I Found it in the Archives Contest

archives21The Clark County Historical Society is sponsoring a local I Found It In The Archives essay and video contest to raise awareness for archives and to show how the items and information found in the nation’s archives touch peoples’ lives. We are seeking entrants who have found something special in our collections here at the Heritage Center in our library and archives.

Did your research here help you break through a brick wall? Did you uncover a really awesome story worth sharing? Was there a particular record, document, photo, or artifact that meant a lot to you? If you answered yes to any of these, you’ve got a great entry in the making!

P1000407

To Enter: between June 1-30, 2015, we ask that you submit either:
• A 400 word essay describing your quest for information and explaining why finding it has made a difference for you, along with a color photograph of you, OR
• A video of no more than 2 minutes in which you describe your quest for information and explain why finding it has made a difference for you. Please also include a color photo of you with your video submission.

This downloadable  entry form and waiver must accompany your entry and can be submitted with the essay or video as an attachment to clarkcountyhistory@gmail.com. You may also mail your entry and the entry form and waiver to our offices at the Heritage Center: Clark County Historical Society ATTN: Archives, 117 S. Fountain Avenue, Springfield, Ohio 45502.

Essays and videos of the finalists in this competition will be posted online for a public vote on our Facebook page. The entry with the most votes will be declared the winner and will receive a prize package:

  • One year annual family membership to Clark County Historical Society.
  • One year family membership to the Clark County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society.
  • Heartland, our museum exhibition catalog and county history.
  • Behind-the-scenes tour of the Clark County Historical Society’s collections area and archives.

RULES

You may submit only one entry.

You may submit your entry by email to clarkcountyhistory@gmail.com or mail your entry and entry form and waiver to:

Clark County Historical Society
ATTN: Archives
117 S. Fountain Avenue
Springfield, Ohio 45502

Your entry becomes the property of the Clark County Historical Society. We reserve the right to post your essay and photograph or video online. Materials will not be returned.

TIMELINE

Entries must be received by June 30, 2015.

Finalists will be notified by July 8, 2015, and their essays or videos posted online for a public vote.

The close of online public voting will be August 1, 2015. The winner of the competition will be notified on August 4, 2015.

The winning entry will be sent on to compete in a statewide competition. The statewide winner will be hosted at the Society of Ohio Archivists Fall Conference during the first week of October 2015.

WHERE is it Wednesday for October 1, 2014

On October 1, we shared a photo of a building on our Facebook page to see if anyone could guess what it was.

Where could this be?

                                                                              Where could this be?

Apparently we chose a very recognizable place because there were many guesses and nearly every one was correct! The castle-like structure sits high on the hill at 901 W. High Street and was originally the home of industrialist P.P. Mast and later became “Castle Knoll,” the Knights of Pythias nursing home.

The home was built between 1880-1882 and was modeled after a castle in Italy that P.P. Mast admired during his travels in Europe. He chose the location for his “castle” on the highest knoll in the area, hoping to create a wealthy part of town on the west end. Mast brought over 29 Italian emigrants to work on the amazing woodwork and stonework inside and outside. (He also used local talent, including A.H. Mittendorf, a woodworker who was well known in the Dayton area). The first two floors of the home were the living area while the third floor was a ballroom. The woodwork in each room on the first and second floors was unique and intricate and the stained glass was brought in from France. Mast’s earlier home, built 1880-1881 at 910 W. High Street is right across the street and it was reportedly preferred by his wife Anna, who died in April 1895, a few months after a major fire at the “castle” across the street. Mast died in November 1898 and is buried alongside his wife in the Mast mausoleum in Ferncliff.

910 W. High Street

                                                                    910 W. High Street

Mast’s home was purchased by the Knights of Pythias and was rededicated as a home for the aged in October 1915. It remained the Pythian’s Castle Knoll nursing home until around 2005 when the home closed and the residents were transferred. The early records of the home (including the records of the children’s home) until about the 1930s are available in the historical society archives.

Ohio Pythian Home, mid 1980s

                                                          Ohio Pythian Home, mid 1980s

k of p brochure copyAnd now a bit more about P.P. Mast:
Phineas P. Mast was born on January 3, 1825 in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. His family, which included seven siblings, came to Clark County and settled near Urbana in 1830. He attended Ohio Wesleyan and graduated in 1849. He returned to the family farm and entered the grain and produce trade and also taught school. He married Anna Kirkpatrick in 1850 and eventually relocated to Springfield in 1856. He formed a partnership with John H. Thomas (whom we mentioned in our WHERE is it Wednesday post a few weeks ago) and formed Thomas & Mast, manufacturing agricultural implements. He bought out the company in 1871 and established P.P. Mast and Company. Mast founded Mast-Foos Manufacturing Company in 1876, producing wind engines, pumps, plows, and mowers (he also had the P.P. Mast Buggy Company).

ppmast copy mast foos copy mast foos001 copy

mast foos002 copyfire1925 copy

pc0040120002-large copyMast envisioned a magazine that could help to promote his products and hired John S. Crowell to start the magazine and his nephew T.J. Kirkpatrick to serve as editor and thus, Farm and Fireside was launched in October 1877. In 1883, the firm known as Mast, Crowell, & Kirkpatrick acquired Woman’s Home Companion and later published American Magazine. (Several years after Mast’s death the company incorporated as the Crowell Publishing Company in 1906 and in 1919 purchased Collier’s Weekly and eventually merged with P.F. Collier Publishing in 1934 to become the Crowell-Collier Publishing Company).

MastCrowellKirkpatrick copyMast served on the Springfield City Council for 22 years, was mayor from 1895-1897, and president on the Board of Trade (later Chamber of Commerce). He was instrumental in the formation of the Clark County Historical Society (proposing the adoption of our name in August 1897). His home, life, and ventures are well represented in the historical society’s collection: trade cards, photographs, objects (Buckeye pumps, lawn mowers, a windmill), and magazines (we have nearly a full run of all the magazines published from the 1870s-1956 when Crowell-Collier closed). Many events of Mast’s life, career and his companies is recorded in the diaries of George Netts in the archives. Netts’s diaries span the years 1868-1933 and detail many major events in the history of Springfield.

George Netts diary entry from October 3, 1915.

                                                   George Netts diary entry from October 3, 1915.

Sources:

Springfield Illustrated 1889

Beautiful Ferncliff: Springfield Ohio’s Historic Cemetery and Arboretum by Anne E. Benston and Dr. Paul W. Schanher III

Literary Category – George Netts Diary Collection – Transcribed 1868-1933

Health and Care Category – Pythian Home Resident Index, Pythian Children’s Home Resident Index

Photographic Category – Architecture – Residential by Style and Street Collection

Associations Category – Knights of Pythias Collection

Architectural Category – Private Homes Collection

Architectural Category – Ohio Historic Inventory Collection

Small Collections Category – Bartley Collection

Small Collections Category – Ballentine Collection

Commercial Category – Trade Card Collection