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Aurora History Grows

The Historical Society has received a second box from the individuals who had shipped the first “Mystery” box. Jean Doubrava Harris and her husband Chuck were the origin of the first shipment. Moving to a new home in Florida they were going through old possession and have discovered a wealth of items dating back to Jean’s ancestors, the C.R. Harmon’s. The new shipment again contained priceless items. A series of letters received by the Harmons during the 1930’s depression tell the tale of several debtors who owe them money, all declaring their good intentions to repay their obligations but are in such dire straits that they regret they are unable to honor them. The 1866, 67, 69, and 70 diaries of Mrs. C.R. Harmon tell a fascinating story of life in Aurora during the post-Civil War era. There is also an essay on “Temperance” written by Mrs. C.R. Harmon in the 1860s describing the evils of alcohol and the impact on American society. The Baby book of Helen Louise Harmon, born September 21, 1915 gives a glimpse of her early years along with vintage pictures.  

The most valuable item in the shipment was the “Aurora School Record”, a journal of school board actions beginning with the formation of the school board on April 17, 1853 and covering actions of the board through the May 20, 1882 decision to build the “new school” on the same location of the existing one room school which is the location of the current Aurora City Hall. What was unknown until the journal was read that in 1853 when the school board was formed that there were 13 sub districts (one room school houses) that were created each with its own board of directors. While early maps of Aurora indicated the existence of 8 one room school housed in the Township of Aurora, the Aurora Board of Education also had jurisdiction over one room houses in Bainbridge and Twinsburg that were in close proximity to Aurora’s borders. Over the years the number of buildings were consolidated and the number reduced.

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Mystery Solved

The mystery has been solved. The anonymous donor of the box of materials on the Harmons is known.  We knew the package was shipped from Florida and the billing at the UPS store had a C Harris on the receipt.

After some sleuthing, I called Bob Harris (Toni) no relation to the Harris’s, he had graduated with and was still good friends with Jim Doubrava who lives in Gates Mills.  Bob contacted Jim and got the phone number for his sister, Jean.  John Kudley talked to Jean, she had no idea that her husband Chuck  shipped the box without a note inside.  And Chuck wasn’t aware that he had not put a letter in the box either. 

The package was shipped from Melbourne, Florida by Chuck Harris and Jean Doubrava Harris  she is a descendant of the Harmon’s and Baldwins and had grown up in the brick house at 60 E. Pioneer.  Her family had built the house in 1826 and the Baldwins had moved to the Western Reserve in 1809.The Baldwins owned a 5 acre square, from Chillicothe Rd. east to the river.

Needless to say the mystery is solved.  Jean also indicated that they have a lot more if we were interested in the “stuff.”  They will be shipping more in the future. We will keep you posted!  

-John Kudley
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Show your Support!

Be the first on your cul-de-sac with an AHS sticker on your rear end!

…of your car that is.

Stop by the museum and get one for just $2. The project was put together and donated by Dale Moravec. Honk when you see one.

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Post Office

postofficeWho can add some information about this location?

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Just learned of the passing of Honorary Life Trustee, Past President and Founding Member

Jean Rumbold

This may not be new to many of you.

JEAN RUMBOLD, of Aurora September 15, 1930 December 31, 2016. Beloved wife of the late John; dear mother of Lynn (Tom) Rollason, Ann (Jim) Nesbitt, Liz (Al) Fisler, and Laura (Nick) Crow; loving grandmother of 9; sister of Lois Callahan and Kathy Nothnagel. Memorial Services Saturday January 7, 1PM at The Church In Aurora, 146 S. Chillicothe Rd., Aurora. Memorials may be made to the Aurora Memorial Library. Arrangements by Steinbauer Funeral Home (440)248-6088.

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An Aurora Gallery

Here’s a look back at some places in Aurora, We’d welcome your comments.

Geauga Lake Depot

Picture 1 of 16

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Kathlyn Brown, enthusiastic volunteer

kathybrownThe Aurora Historical Society is sadden by the untimely passing of Kathlyn Brown.  Kathlyn was the recipient of the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award.   

     Kathlyn’s tireless energy, creativity and dedication have been an important factor in allowing the Society to fulfill its mission. Kathlyn joined the Board as Secretary in January of 2012 after a forty-year career as a professional educator. While serving as Secretary, her contributions have exceeded that leadership role. She joined at a time when the traveling exhibits, Lincoln and Civil Rights and Journey Stories, allowed the Society to reach out to the community. Her marketing abilities increased the viability and visibility of the Aurora Historical Society.
     She was also a driving force in the very successful Antiques Appraisal Fair, Consignment Shop and Café.
     Her organizational and marketing skills and attention to detail were vital to the success of the Deed House Project. In addition to the general capital campaign she managed two very well received fundraisers: ThornCreek Winery Deed House Fundraiser and the Bertram Gala and Silent Auction. Kathlyn and her husband are also major donors to the Deed House Project.
     Kathlyn had devoted herself to the growth and engagement of the Aurora Historical Society and, if asked, would say that she had a grand time in so doing.

A memorial service for Kathlyn will be held at The Church of Aurora on October 22, 2016 at 10:00 am.

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Slick’s Restaurant

Anyone remember this place? Which corner was it on at 82 and 43?Slick's Restaurtant 82 & 43

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