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Webster County Museum needs help

Collection of local historical items is at risk

A small band of volunteers dedicated to preserving Webster County history – our history – needs help.

Since they established the Webster County Museum 19 years ago, these volunteers have assembled an impressive array of artifacts documenting life here. The collection includes relics like the old safe from Olson Jewelry, an organ from the Princess Theater, and the Gowrie Star Theater movie projector. There is also furniture, household items, military uniforms, wedding dresses and what’s believed to be the largest collection of Boy Scout memorabilia in the state.

But many of these things are under wraps now.

In August 2001, the museum was moved into the former Otho Elementary School, which the volunteers hoped would be a good and permanent home for it. But that was not to be. The former school’s roof leaks like sieve, putting all those historical treasures at risk of being ruined by water. Today, many items are covered by big sheets of plastic and others are packed away to protect them.

The treasures of Webster County’s past that have been preserved by the museum volunteers are at risk of destruction. It would be a disgrace if they were to end up in a garbage bin.

It is now time for the rest of the community to help.

What can be done to help?

The ultimate gift for the Webster County Museum would be a building that would be the new home for the collection.

Obviously, most folks aren’t going to be able to donate a building. But they can donate some of their time and money. Volunteering to help just a few hours a month would give the group a boost. And monetary donations of any amount would help as well.

We urge Webster County residents to do what they can to prevent this collection of their history from being lost.

To help, call Phyllis Stewart at (515) 972-4804.