Old copies of a former Hillsboro newspaper will soon be available for viewing by the public thanks to a donation from the Highland County District Library to the Highland County Historical Society.
Due to a lack of space, the library recently donated nearly 100 bound copies of the former News-Herald, with dates ranging from the late 1800s and, with some gaps, from the 1920s to 1971, to the historical society.
The News-Herald was a forerunner of today’s Times-Gazette.
The bound volumes are currently stored in the Scott House, a historic home owned by the society, but after the first of the year single volumes will be available to the public — after around a week’s notice — at the society’s Highland House Museum in Hillsboro, according to historical society member Carolyn Hastings.
“What was Highland County doing during the Depression or World War II? What was going on in Highland County while you were in high school? Which businesses were in existence in 1950s? These questions can be explored by reading the newspapers of the day,” said Hastings, a volunteer in the museum’s library. “The Highland County Historical Society is indebted to Jennifer West, director of the Highland County District Library, for the recent gift…”
Hastings said that in the future the historical society hopes to have a reading room at the Scott House where the old newspaper copies could be easily viewed. But for now the newspapers can be viewed in the museum’s library from 1-5 p.m. on Thursdays.
It was recently announced that the museum library will be renamed in honor of Jean and the late Lester Wallis. “It’s a tribute to all they’ve done for the historical society and the community,” Hastings said.
The museum library contains books by various authors on the history of Highland County, records from a former infirmary in Highland County that Hastings said no one else has, boxes of information on the local Temperance Crusade, memorabilia and information on various families, pictures of people and places around the county, and more.
“All we have in the library really is due to Jean Wallis’ efforts,” Hastings said.
The society also has a scanner that can used to scan old photos or documents that people may be interested in sharing with the community.
To reserve one of the bound copies for viewing, call the Highland House at 937-393-3392.
“I think Highland County history is something to be very proud of, and I think it really links us whether we just came here or were born here,” Hastings said.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522.