Historical Society Receives Donation


The Vigo County Historical Society is looking forward to a big move from their 6th and WashingtoS street location to 9th and Wabash. The society still has to gather funds from the community for the move to become a reality.

But a just announced donation is a boost to the fundraising.

“Of course we screamed really loud, we were so excited and we apologized to John for screaming in his ear and he said, ‘don’t worry about it, we all need to keep screaming until we’re cutting that ribbon on opening day,'” Susan Tingley said.

It’s a donation that reminds development director Susan Tingley of how the historical society can make an impact in our community.

“The Root family has that strong legacy here in Terre Haute,” she said.

The  family owned the Root Glass Company in Terre Haute, where the iconic 1915 coca-cola bottle was designed. John Root, a family foundation board member pledged $100,000 to the historical society’s move.

“This is not just a repository for old things, this is definitely an education center and it helps with the community as far as understanding where they came from and having a pride in that,” Tingley said.

The re-location will be to another historic family’s former building.

“This building belonged to Max Ehrman’s family, and it was a clothing factory for a number of years, so you know it just ties in with why the history center should be here, due to all the rich history that is involved with this building,” Sally Whitehurst said.

Whitehurst works as the history center’s fundraising co-chair, she says donations are vital to revitalizing the way we remember our community.

“The historical museum is static… We’ve simply outgrown the facility, so when you come here, there’s going to be three floors and the exhibits will be changing constantly, so that way people will want to come back and see the various displays,” Whitehurst said.

Susan Tingley says if fundraising goes as planned, the society should reach their 3 million dollar goal by the end of the year, so they can begin renovation and move into the building in 2018. The society is also seeking grant funding and historic tax credits which she says is coming along well.


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