Thursday, March 5, 2009

Clarification of Harrison Store and Blacksmith Shop Photo
In the previous article about the Harrison Store, etc and accompanying photo, unless you click on the picture and see the heading, Town and Grange Hall-Early 1900’s, you might think the large building in the foreground was the Harrison Store. “Actually”, as my grandkids say- this was the Old Town Hall, the Grange Hall and Post Office until 1972. This building was built in 1897 and was used as a community center until flooded with 5-6 feet of water. The “new” Town Hall Building was in the last stages of construction on the present Rt. 15 and near enough completion that the Town Offices and Post Office were moved to the new building shortly after the flood. Up until that time, the various town offices i.e.: Town Clerk, Supervisor and Justice of Peace were in private homes or in a store. In 1984, members of the Grange transferred memberships to the Granges in Caton or Addison. The “old Town Hall” building was sold to Richard Pierce.
From 1987 to 1972, various activities were held in the” Old Town Hall”. The upstairs served as the meeting room for Adult Grange and Juvenile Grange meetings were held downstairs. Meals could be served upstairs where there were tables, chairs, a stove, cupboards and a piano. There was, also, a stage where plays and even church services were conducted. During the late 1940’s, members of the Grange gave permission to a group of local teenagers to hold square dances there Saturday evenings with the understanding that Mothers would chaperone and that we join the Grange. On a personal note- our wedding was held there after the Community Church basement was flooded a day or two before our wedding.
It is not known exactly when the Post Office became officially located in the North end of the downstairs. Before then, usually local stores served as a postoffice. The Town Board met in the south end of the downstairs. Before automobiles shortened travel time there were two election districts in town. Elections for the Lindley part of the town were held in the downstairs of this building and people in Presho end of town voted in the small building on Indian Hills road just south of the present Smith Road.
Several changes in the landscape in this area are occurring at present. Construction for the new two- lane- bridge is starting. Later today, I hope to post a picture of the beginning of the construction.

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