Photo show opens at W.H. Over Museum

Photo show opens at W.H. Over Museum The Friends of the W.H. Over Museum announce the opening of a new show, "Clay County Retrospective Photographs and Historic Objects," to be on exhibit until Oct. 31. This unique show combines a photographic show assembled by the USD Faculty Women's Club for the state's centennial celebration in 1989 along with a number of unique artifacts from the Over Collection.

The original photographs were lent by Stella Anker, Ray and Margaret DeVilbiss, Dorothy Chaney, Margaret Hood, Carlton Leikvold, Ruth Moses, Robert Stark, Joan Holter, Wendell Shouse, Ron Johnson, Milton Macy and Martin Weeks. They were re-photographed by then art student Bart Wilsey.

The prints and legends were mounted and framed by Mike Lacome, then curator of exhibits. The director, Julia Vodicka, edited the legends to conform with museum standards. In the cases are some objects that have never been exhibited. Some are very fragile and may never be on exhibit again.

One of the most unique objects on exhibit is a piece of water pipe which was laid in Main Street during the earliest days of our town on top of the hill. The streets were laid after the flood of 1881. The smallest of the three in our collection, this piece was removed from the portion of Main Street which is now in front of Cortrust Bank. Originally the Waldorf Hotel stood on that site.

It was given to the museum by A.H. White in 1956. The other two pieces had been dug up much later, some time in the 1960s, from Dakota Street hill, according to our meager records. It is hard to imagine that our water supply ran through handmade pipes of this sort. The Over Museum has an assortment of official records from a number of communities including, of course, Vermillion.

For your interest we have copied the hand written papers which established Vermillion as a town, the Articles of Incorporation, signed and dated May 26, 1862.

Other objects on exhibit include a sophomore class picture from 1893 with Mrs. Gunderson as teacher, a framed Common School Diploma (1900), a photo of the USD football team from 1889, a variety of branding irons, a stereograph picturing early Main Street with the Waldorf in the background, and a viewer used for looking at these stereographs in a 3D mode.

If you have any interest in early Clay County or want to know something about the history of your new hometown, this is the time to visit the W.H. Over Museum.

Over, who was director and curator of this museum for 35 years, developed it from a collection of rocks and minerals to a natural and cultural history museum. In the exhibit previous to this one we featured many of the artifacts that reflect the culture of the original people, past and present, living in our area.

Our next Sletwold Hall exhibit will be a return of the special show which honors the veterans of foreign wars, Nov. 6-18. Finishing off the year, Sletwold Hall will exhibit the grassland photographs of John Banasiak. The Grasslands will open Nov. 20 with a reception in the gallery at 7 p.m.

Everyone is invited to attend these special events, and to visit the museum at any time. We feature classes on Saturdays, beadwork group meets on the second Saturday at 1 p.m. Fall hours are Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sunday 1 to 4:30 p.m.

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