It was busy day Saturday in Hillsboro with the Highland County Historical Society hosting the inaugural Pioneer Day at the Scott at the Highland Amateur Radio Association hosting a separat event just a couple blocks away at the Highland County Courthouse
The HARA demonstration was held in conjunction with other amateur radio groups across the state who participated in the Ohio Courthouses on the Air event, broadcasting simultaneously from their respective regional courthouses statewide.
HARA member Dave Tourtelot said the demonstration’s location was significant because the Highland County Courthouse is, “the oldest courthouse” in Ohio that is, “still used for its intended county government purpose.”
According to John Levo of the HARA, “Therefore, the idea of celebrating the history of the Highland County Courthouse through amateur radio was proposed to Highland County Commissioners Gary Abernathy, Terry Britton and Jeff Duncan, who … accepted the idea and granted permission to operate from the courthouse lawn.”
According to information provided by the HARA, the event served the purpose of providing, “another training opportunity enabling amateurs to learn how to establish reliable communications when called upon, in the event of a local, regional or national emergency.” In addition, “It is also an opportunity for the public to learn more about amateur radio and how it can serve a community.” Levo said.
HARA member Jeff Collins said, “We’re always looking for new members in amateur radio.”
For more information about HARA, call HARA Information Officer John Levo at 937-393-4951 or [email protected]
Pioneer Day was well received Saturday and according to historical society director Vicki Knauff, plans are being made for next year with an evaluation meeting scheduled for Tuesday evening.
She said one thing her small committee discovered was it was a larger undertaking than they originally planned, but dedication made everything come together.
One of the most well-received events of Pioneer Day was tours of the 175-year-old Scott House that were conducted by Tara Beery, Bob Brown and Carole Rooney. Knauff said it was amazing to her the number of people who wanted to go through the old mansion.
She also said the bake sale that was held in the Scott House for the benefit of the historical society was a tremendous success, and she thanked Carolyn Kellis for her work on Saturday.
“We were very well pleased with the number of people who came out,” she said. “The community booths were very nice, and people said they really enjoyed seeing the pictures and artifacts from the different communities.”
The weatherman cooperated in giving Pioneer Day beautiful weather with sunny skies and low humidity, she said, adding that “you could tell just by walking around how proud they were of their little communities and how they played a role in the settlement of Highland County.”
She also credited the Grassy Run Historical Arts Committee for their part in Pioneer Day. Its members gave demonstrations in period costume of how life was lived and the hard work it took to settle the frontier of southwest Ohio.
For a first-year run, Knauff said she was pleased with how the event turned out, and said there is room for additions and improvement in the years to come.