Adventures in Collecting

Vol. XII No. 2 - SUMMER 2001

Since we founded the Edgewater Historical Society in 1988 we have had an active collections committee. Currently the Chairman is Mark Harding, a man who takes his job seriously. Mark knows every antique shop on the North Side and visits them frequently. He is truly a collector and the Society is lucky to have him spearheading the search for “lost Edgewater”. But really, every EHS member is a member of the collections committee.

From our members we receive random donations, artifacts discovered while looking for something else. Travelers have learned that it is often easier to find postcards from Edgewater while visiting other cities. Because of these unexpected donations the committee has passed a policy that any member may be reimbursed for up to $10 for artifacts purchased for the Society.

The collections of the Society are held in a variety of locations while we await the completion of our museum. We receive donations and catalogue them as they are received.

Sometimes things like postcards and advertising are mailed in. Years ago we received an old family bible from someone who found it in the attic when they moved in. Occasionally we receive old copies of the Edgewater News.

The collectibles from the Edgewater Beach Hotel are always of interest to the Committee. We have a pretty extensive collection of postcards but we are happy to receive more. Some of the other unusual items we have received are a key to a room, a pencil, an ashtray, a vase and even the EBH Salad Book. Many people collect the Edgewater Beach Hotel they found many people who had memories and artifacts to share. Watch for this special coming up in October. these things. When Channel 11 came to Edgewater to do a story on Our most recent acquisition is a story in itself. Last year when the James McManus, homestead on Ridge was sold some of us went hunting. James McManus was the proprietor of Edgewater’s first grocery store on Bryn Mawr. In the basement of the home we found the old meat saw from the Edgewater Grocery. It took us a year and many phone calls to finally get it from the basement of the house at 5776 Ridge before the developer of the adjacent property, Jim Byrne, tears the homestead down. Wally Bradford and his son, Dan, Dave Gemperle and neighbor, Leroy Steinke managed to move the heavy caste iron saw out of the basement and onto Dan’s waiting truck. It’s home for the time being is a garage.

We don’t plan to collect many large artifacts for this museum, the space is limited. But we hope that many more people will contribute to the collections once the Museum is opened.