The Jefferson County Historical Association's annual meeting and banquet on Sept. 14 at the Steubenville Country Club found me seated at a family table of sorts, considering Bob Phillipson had a sister on each side of him - Ruth Koran, whom I have met before, and Shirley Huscroft, who I have now officially met. The table also included Phillipson's wife, Marsha (they're celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary - congratulations!); Bill Alexander; and Cathy Davison, Steubenville's city manager who was interested to hear the keynote speaker, Steubenville native Steve Franckhauser.
In the history department, Davison is a fan of Abraham Lincoln, whose Secretary of War was Steubenville native Edwin M. Stanton, Franckhauser's topic.
Frankhauser's remarks included comments on dispelling the myth of Stanton and his involvement in Lincoln's assassination.
Officers Judy Brancazio, president; Charlie Green, second vice president; and Eleanor Naylor, first vice president
Judy Brancazio, association president, introduced Franckhauser after recapping accomplishments of the association since last year's annual meeting.
That included a special Veterans Day service at the museum that recognized the service in particular of the late Richard "Rich" Connor Ryan, a native of Toronto who served in the Special Forces branch of the U.S. Army for more than 10 years, which included three tours in Vietnam. It was occasion for the museum to formally accept the donation of Ryan's dress uniform along with a host of medals, badges and unit patches.
The association was a part of the library's holiday home tour and arranged restoration of the only recorded picture known to exist of Joseph J. Gill, which is in the form of a portrait drawn in 1917. It's now on display in the Herald-Star lobby. The association also entertained a visit from Richard Faulkner of Worcester, England, a member of the British Parliament House of Lords, to add Steubenville to his travel plans in order to search for information about his great-great-great aunt's life in the city.
Brancazio also noted the Vivian Snyder Memorial Library continues to be open to researchers on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and according to the banquet program booklet, the library has several new books, including a biography on Stanton written by his sister, Pamphila Stanton Wolcott.
Plans for the coming year include preparing a Dean Martin room of memorabilia at the museum and organizing a possible trip to Gettysburg, Pa.
The association has 225 members, a third of whom constitute former residents. A one-year membership is $15.
Checks can be made payable to the Jefferson County Historical Association and mailed to it at P.O. Box 4268, Steubenville, Ohio, 43952. The museum - a 19-room tudor mansion that exhibits artifacts from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries and displays how life was once lived in those periods in Jefferson County - is located at 426 Franklin Ave., Steubenville.
The banquet also included the invocation by Dominic Teramana Jr. and the pledge to the flag led by Joan Anliker. The photo I took of Anliker with Brancazio, Eileen Moody, Carm Gentile and Rose Marie Chappano celebrated a longtime friendship that extended beyond them all being from Catholic Central High School's Class of 1951.
Bob Martin presented Franckhauser with a print of Stanton and Charles Pittinger, who received the fifth medal of honor in the Civil War from Stanton.
Other officers of the association are Eleanor Naylor, first vice president; Charlie Green, second vice president; and Terry Zavacky, treasurer.