Board members share memories of local museum
Posted: Thursday, May 3, 2012 5:00 pm
The Obion County Museum, located at 1004 Edwards St. in Union City, will be closing May 18. Many of the artifacts that have been displayed there through the years will be moved to Discovery Park of America, which will be open in about a year’s time on Union City’s northwest side between Everett Boulevard and I-69.
The museum, which was founded in 1970 at the site of the Obion County Fairgrounds and which moved to its current location Oct. 15, 1986, has preserved the history of this community in interesting, informative and important ways through those years.
As its days wind down, The Messenger has asked members of the board of directors to share their memories of favorite exhibits. These will be featured over the coming days leading up to May 18.
Area residents who would like to visit the museum prior to its closing may make an appointment for a specific time or take advantage of the hours for display from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
“My favorite display would have to be the wildlife display.
“My Obion County Central High School art students painted forest and lake scenery on six panels of 4-foot by 8-foot plywood in the classroom. The leader was Dale Beard, who grew up on the lake.
“When we matched the panels in the museum, we added papier mache rocks, mirror water, lots of grass and rushes and the animals.
“All the animals were native to Obion County. Ducks, geese and owls were fastened on to the panels. Deer, beaver, fox, snakes, turtles, frogs, etc., were tucked into the grass and rocks.
“Children were fascinated and spent much time walking up and down the exhibit. The adults would point out the different species to each other and spread the word to others to come and see the exhibit.
“We always left it up longer than planned because people kept coming and returning. We built this display several times over the years.”
Martha “Marti” Doss
“My first experience with the Obion County Museum was in the military portion. I was, and still am, working under Newell Graham, who is the military advisor and procurement agent for Discovery Park of America.
“Since I was retired and had more free time, I was asked to go through all the storage areas that the museum had and to look for military items to identify and display. I spent many hours doing this and collected a large amount of items.
“Different people started donating items and I was given the authority to purchase multiple items ranging from personal field gear, uniforms, small weaponry, souvenirs, large weaponry, jeep, Humvee, tank, helicopter, airplane, bombs and torpedoes.
“I have always been interested in military and have sold personal military surplus for 30-plus years. When I was a child, my uncles brought me military items from their service in World War II and Korea, so my fascination with military items has put me in the middle of the Obion County Museum and Discovery Park of America.
“Thanks to all.”
“In 2007, my husband, Terry, was recovering from a serious illness and was restless due to being inactive. We read an article in The Messenger about art lessons offered at the Obion County Museum and decided that would be a good activity we could pursue together.
“We started lessons that fall — I was a complete novice and Terry needed to hone his skills. Marti Doss and Polly Brasher were our teachers and soon became our good friends, as well.
“Over the next four years, we enjoyed weekly lessons, learning new art media and techniques. Terry won several ribbons at the Obion County Fair with his entries and was continually working to improve his efforts.
“During this time, we were invited to attend meetings of the museum board and soon became permanent fixtures. We were proud to show visitors around the extensive exhibits in our facility and to tell them about the Discovery Park of America in the works. We also enjoyed working with other members of the board, who are a great group of dedicated folks.”
Published in The Messenger 5.03.12