Fill The Form…

The Ramsayer Research Library has a new tool to make it easier for you to submit a request!

Request Form


Follow this link Submit Research Request and you can fill out the form and submit a question.

Please keep in mind we only have two volunteers and myself working on these requests.

We appreciate your patience!

We Help People Find Their Happiness!

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Linked to Research…

We help people find their happiness.  Call, Write, or Come into our archive to ask how we bring many people happiness and satisfaction.

Our archive website Ramsayer Research Library has two new features.  First, we have added a Search Engine to enable the researcher to search anything on our archive website!

Archive Website (Search Engine)

Plus, our website has a new page called Quicklinks.  This new page contains six links to pages helpful to researchers, and we will be adding more…  We have added a line or two to each link to let you know why you want to go to these pages.  Stay tuned for videos on our McKinley Museum’s Youtube, and Facebook pages explaining in detail how to use the pages we have linked.

Quicklinks Page


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New Found Home…

Simon Essig, Plain Township Pioneer, born December 27, 1754  was married to Julian Marg’ Schnarin.  They had twelve children together and settled in Plain Township, Ohio.

The Essig family had many reunions as documented in an invitation to a reunion, Thursday June 14, 1900 and by the Roller Monthly publication of Canton.

Roller Montly August 1900

Reunion Invitation for Essig Family June 14, 1900

Edna Schea was inspired to paint Simon Essig’s home in Plain Township.  The location of the home is described in the 1900 reunion invitation as being located on the Middle Branch of the Nimishillen Creek, near Canton, Ohio.


The donor who lives in Maine knew the artist briefly.  The artist painted this landscape in 1968 in Meriden, Connecticut.  Edna died December 23, 1986 and is buried in Walnut Grove Cemetery, in Meriden, Connecticut.

Why Edna painted this landscape is a mystery.  Volunteer, Judy Pocock, and I have begun to put the pieces back together.  I had a nice talk with the donor of the painting, and she is very happy the painting has landed in a safe home.  Judy Pocock has found no direct link between Edna Schea, and the Essig family.

We will continue to investigate.

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Bundles for Baker…








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

Bundles for Baker 70 for 70

If you ask most longtime residents of Stark County whether they remember listening to John Baker on WHBC their reaction is always the same.  First, a big smile crosses their face, and they give you an excited “yes!”

Today we add another oral history to our vast collection.  John Baker helped us learn more and add more to our collection on early radio and television in Stark County.


John is a gentle and humble man who is a veteran, a radio announcer, “actor,” television anchorman, advertising agent, and Plain Township trustee.

More dear to him than any of the former are his accomplishments as a family man and husband to Nancy.  Speaking about his wife, “Meeting, and marrying my wife Nancy was the best decision of my life!”


John and Nancy Baker viewing their “Bundles for Baker!”


Thank you to John & Nancy Baker for helping us learn more about our citizens of Stark County.  Thank you to Volunteer, Tom Haas who worked countless hours on this project, and saw it to completion.


To view or listen to John Baker’s oral history, or any of the oral histories we have in our collection, please call 330-455-7043 to make an appointment.

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Picnic at the Lake…




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

Petunia gardens, Roller Coasters, Skiing, Smooth Rich Custard, Monkey Island, Company Picnics for 10 thousand!

Only one place where you could find all of these amazing things!

Meyer’s Lake Amusement Park!

In the late 19th century and most of the 20th Century, in Canton, Ohio this was thee place to be!

Today we feature Jeffrey D. Brown and Raymond D. Fete’s fourth book on Meyer’s Lake: The Last Dance.

Meyer's Lake Park & Zoo


Volunteer, Tom Haas, and I had a really great time on Tuesday morning, sitting down with Jeff Brown who along with Ray Fete created four books on Meyer’s Lake from the mid 1980’s to the early 21st century.  We thank you Jeff for your contributions to Stark County, and your donation to our historical society!



Now it’s your turn.  This blog is posted on our Museum Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube pages and we look forward to your favorite stories of Meyer’s Lake!

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Memory Honored…





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

Today we feature a book published in 2007 by Arcadia Publishing, Written by our Museum Curator, Kimberly Kenney! This book can be purchased in the Museum Shoppe, and is available for reference research in the Ramsayer Research Library.

Canton’s Pioneers In Flight is a 154 page book that focuses on the citizens of Canton, Ohio that “took to the air” after Wilbur and Orville made that triumphant flight December 17, 1903.

Canton's Pioneer In Flight


The focus of this blog post is Raymond “Bud” Sherrick, and his daughter Joan (Jo Anne) Sherrick.  Bud’s story can be found in chapter 6 of Kim’s book titled, Any Sane Person Took a Train, Canton’s Early Airfields.

Last week Joan Sherrick visited the library along with her daughter, and grandson.  She told the story of her father Raymond performing stunts in an airshow at Milton Dam near Milton, Ohio.  She said her mother being six months pregnant with her, watched her husband’s plane fall to the ground. Raymond Sherrick just twenty-eight years old, was killed.  Raymond served during The Great War as a Naval Aviator.  He resided at 1937 Tuscarawas Street West in Canton.  He graduated from Central High School, in 1915, and later from The University of Michigan in 1923.

Raymond Sherrick Canton Central High School 1915

1 - Copy

– Courtesy of the Stark County District Library’s Genealogy Department


– Courtesy of the Stark County District Library’s Genealogy Department



It was an honor to meet this family who holds an important link to our Stark County history.  Thank you for sharing your story!

Raymond Sherrick’s memorial can be found following this link to Find-A-Grave.

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Canton, Ohio 1922…






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

Today we feature a book, Canton, Ohio 1922.

This is a wonderfully simple book that illustrates Canton in the early 1920’s.

It is an excellent resource to find people, service clubs, school buildings, churches, public buildings, and services that made Canton a wonderful place to live in 1922.

It was compiled and published by Canton Mayor, Herman R. Witter.

Canton, Ohio 1922 Signature

Canton, Ohio 1922 Herman R. Witter, Mayor

Herman R. Witter, Mayor Canton, Ohio

Canton, Ohio 1922 Birdseye Views

Herman R. Witter, Mayor Canton, Ohio

Canton, Ohio 1922 First National Bank

One of the Landmarks of Canton, The First National Bank. (Now Chase Tower)

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Class In Session…







We help our visitors find inspiration in the citizens who went before us in Stark County. William McKinley became one of those citizens in 1867, and weaved himself into the fabric of Stark County history for some thirty-four years.


We at the McKinley Presidential Library & Museum gather information and artifacts from our collection to help people find their happiness.  What does this mean?  People come to us with many many questions about William McKinley, Stark County, the Presidency in general, and what we have to offer as a museum.  They ask these questions because they have a desire to satisfy a curiosity, or have a need to get to the bottom of a question.  What ever their reason for asking they seem relieved and happy to get their question answered, and get the information they wanted.


One way we answer questions about President William McKinley is to have schoolhouse presentations to immerse school aged students into his life.  Today I taught a group of students from Sugarcreek, Ohio.  They were very interested in where William McKinley lived, and how he worked on his many “jobs!”

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School Bells Silenced…






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

Today we feature photographs from Cherry Street School.  The school was on Cherry Street NE between 9th Street on the South, and Lawrence Road on the North.

Cherry Street School was known as North School from 1876 to 1889, and Cherry Street school from 1889 to 1960 when the building was razed shortly after.

Cherry Street Students (Watermark)

Cherry Street (Watermark)

June 28, 1964


The bell we have in front of our museum was on top of the Cherry Street School.


This bell was manufactured by the Meneely Bell Foundry of West Troy, New York.

Here is a Youtube of the making of a bell.

Meneely Bell Foundry – Rare Footage of Foundry & Bell Making, Part 2

More later…

Movers and Shakers of Canton Industries…






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

Today we feature The Canton Board of Trade from our Stark County Collection.

The Canton Board of Trade (1885-1914) Collected & Documented by Tom Haas 2016

The forerunner of the Canton Chamber of Commerce, the Canton Board of Trade played a tremendously dynamic part in the development of the city of Canton, Ohio

The Canton Board of Trade was organized in 1885.  Its members consisted of prominent businessmen from Canton who recognized that a growing industrial base clearly benefitted all aspects of the greater economy. To that end this group of influential citizens sought to attract other growing companies from other parts of Ohio and even other states to re-locate their businesses to Canton. These persistent men tirelessly pursued any opportunity to sell the benefits of this city to any business that would listen. Their creative packaging of financial benefits coupled with total community support lured many large businesses to select Canton as their new base of operations.

The selling points of Canton were many. It enjoyed an abundance of resources such as plentiful coal and natural gas deposits, a growing nearby steel industry, inexpensive agricultural land, a new city water system, electric railway interurban lines,excellent north-south, east-west railroad lines, many fine schools and churches, an industrially supportive media (The Evening Repository and the Daily Democrat) and a business-friendly city and county government.  Total community support, sweetened by a lucrative package of financial incentives, combined to boost Canton as an excellent place for industrial re-location.

Creative packaging of financial benefits lured many large businesses to select Canton as their new base of operations. The Canton Board of Trade consisted of men of vision who came from all aspects of industrial life. They owned successful businesses and knew what it would take to bring other promising businesses to Canton. They understood that salesmanship alone, sometimes, was not enough. The package offered might even require personal investment on the part of the membership to help seal the deal.  Above all complete civic commitment and cooperation from industry and government was necessary to accomplish their goals.

In 1885 when the Canton Board of Trade was established its sole purpose was to bring the Dueber Hampden Watch Company to Canton.

Dueber Hampden Industries of Canton Page 52


At that time W. W. Clark was the first president (also the first president of the Diebold Safe & Lock Company), Henry W. Harter, Secretary (also serving as Vice President and partner of the George D. Harter Bank) and Louis Schaefer, Corresponding Secretary (also prominent attorney in the City of Canton, Stark County politician, and owner of Schaefer’s Opera House.)

Louis Schaefer Danner Page 1209

As a member of the Canton Board of Trade and later president for many years, Charles A. Dougherty’s personal initiative was largely responsible for fund campaigns that secured for Canton, not only Dueber Hampden and Timken Roller Bearing and Axle Company, but also Carnahan Industries, Canton Malleable Iron Works and many other smaller companies.



One of the most persuasive inducements that Dougherty and members came up with was to bring outside companies and their employees to Canton was the idea to buy farmland close to railroad lines to gift to a prospective manufacturing company. Additional nearby land owned by the Board would frequently be divided into lots, some of which could be given to the prospective company free of charge and some that could be sold to the company’s relocated workers. The Board of Trade used this technique to help bring such successful companies as Dueber Hampden, Carnahan Industries, Timken Roller Bearing and Axle Company to Canton among many other companies from surrounding states.

Timken Roller Bearing Heald Volume III Page 15


According to the Canton Board of Trade’s 1909 publication entitled “The Evolution of a City”, between the years of 1885 and 1909 the following industries were persuaded to move to Canton due to the efforts of this association:

  • Hedgeland Manufacturing Company
  • Cleveland Axle Manufacturing
  • Timken Roller Bearing
  • Kittoe Boiler and Tank Company
  • Power Electric Company
  • Canton Stamping and Enameling
  • Republic Stamping and Enameling
  • Alliance Foundry Company
  • American Roll and Foundry Company
  • American Sheet and Tin Plate Company
  • Canton Malleable Iron Company
  • Gschwind Furnace Company
  • Canton Hughes Pump Company
  • United Steel Company
  • Old King Cole Papier Mache Works
  • Imperial Rubber Manufacturing
  • Stark Rolling Mill Company
  • Cleveland-Canton Spring Company
  • Shull Steel Castings Company
  • Wright Wrench Company
  • Carnahan Tin Plate and Sheet Company

The Canton Board of Trade reported in 1909 that there were 210 factories in Canton employing some 11,000 people, and manufacturing 6,000 distinct and separate articles.  The combined output each year reached more than 20 million dollars.

Canton’s population, as reported in 1909, by the Canton Board of Trade:

1809 2,063 citizens

1860 4,041 citizens

1870 8,660 citizens

1880 12,258 citizens

1890 26,189 citizens

1900 30,667 citizens

1909 45,000 citizens

Notice the enormous growth of population from the period of the 1880’s to the year 1909. This was undoubtedly due to the positive efforts of the Canton Board of trade to bring many businesses and their workers to Canton.

Another Canton business organization at that time, the Canton Businessmen’s Association, was organized in 1904.  It became a partner and also a rival to the Canton Board of Trade. Competitive bickering between these two associations caused the Canton Chamber of Commerce to be established as “one voice” (as suggested by President William Taft) in 1914. The  national Chamber of Commerce had previously been established two years before this.

The Canton Board of Trade continued to exist after 1914 but their influence was slowly diminished. The Canton Chamber of Commerce continued to grow but the “golden age” of bringing successful, long-lasting business development to Canton has never equaled the success of the Canton Board of Trade.


Canton Board of Trade

  • The Stark County Story, Edward Heald, 1952, Vol.III, pgs.198-207
  • “Evolution of a City”, Canton Board of Trade, Canton, Ohio, 1909