Welcome back to 70 Artifacts for 70 years! Look for our logo in platinum for the 70 years of the Stark County Historical Society!

Periodically the McKinley Presidential Library and Museum would like to know “what ever happened to…”. This could be a known historical object such as a chair belonging to President McKinley that was known to be in his home in 1900.  Or it could be  important sculpted marble figures atop a large fountain in front of the Stark County Courthouse. Which brings us to

“what ever happened to”…..

The beautiful fountain that stood in front of the Stark County Courthouse?

Take a look at this photograph of this 2nd version of the Stark County Courthouse built between 1868 and 1870.

(11) Canton, Ohio 1870's

This beautiful Italianate styled courthouse and annex were dominated by rounded topped windows, classical-styled gables and hand-carved stonework. Notice the large fountain that graced the east side of the courthouse lot facing Market Avenue (and wrought-iron fencing surrounding the property).

According to a September 28, 1871 issue of the Stark County Democrat newspaper they called this fountain a “Neptunian Fountain”depicted by the elevated figure of Neptune at the top of the fountain and surrounded by nymphs.

The fountain cost the taxpayers $3000 to install and there was a controversy regarding the need for erecting a non-patriotic (and pagan) sculpture on public land.

This fountain stood in front of the Courthouse until 1893 when the 2nd version of the two- towered Courthouse was replaced with a larger, one-towered courthouse. The fountain was removed and re-installed in Canton Waterworks Park at this time. Here’s a postcard from 1895 showing the fountain in Waterworks Park.

70 Artifacts for 70 Years Item 2, 2

So, “WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO IT”?

The McKinley Museum has not determined as of yet who sculpted this fountain nor what became of it? Is it in a landfill now? It is in somebody’s back yard?

Any help would be greatly appreciated by the public.

Contact:

Tom Haas

Volunteer Researcher

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