What's New On Tom's Travel Blog?

Flickr has been improved! Almost all photos on this blog come from my Flickr Photostream. You can now go directly to a page that shows all of my Flickr photo sets by following this link. It's the easiest way to navigate in my on-line photos.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Mount Gilead, Ohio

Today was another visiting day.  After photographing the capitol building in Columbus we drove up to Mount Gilead to visit a friend.

Mount Gilead is a town of about 3000 located in central Ohio and is the county seat for Morrow County.  Driving through town, you can't help but notice the monument right in the center of two main streets.

On the way out of town, we stopped and I took a picture of the monument and inscription.  During World War I, Morrow County set the record for per-capita purchases of War Saving Stamps.  Now that is a remarkable feat!  Not just the record for Ohio, but the record for the United States.
MtGilead-3 MtGilead-4

A number of the homes on High Street show evidence of some prosperity at the turn of the century, but certainly not of ostentatious wealth.  The answer is not readily apparent on the Web, either.  A mystery for another day, perhaps.

Note that the inscription actually on the shaft makes a slightly more modest claim, more in line with this article from the nearby Mansfield News of December 4, 1919.

Still, it must have been quite an exciting day in December with a crowd of 10,000 showing up for the dedication.

It turns out that the details we want were published back in the heat of the battle in August of 1919.  It was really a three-way race between Licking county, Warren county and Morrow county, all in Ohio.  Let's go to the Newark Daily Advocate for Saturday, August 31, 1919   (Newark, Ohio is the county seat of Licking county.)
Licking county enters the final week of the Victory shaft drive a leader in the ninety-day race and hopeful of success.

All summer, with the exception of one week when Morrow county nosed ahead, Licking county has been the leader in the state wide race and Ohio has been and still is the leader in the Nation in War Savings Stamp sales.  To be sure Licking county now holds a very small lead but that very fact has stirred the workers to renewed activity and has given them a determination to go into the last week of the drive with a vengeance.

The prize is a $10,000 granite shaft given by the Barre Vt. granite manufacturers. The shaft, though a beautiful soldiers' memorial, is hardly worth the great effort that is being made, but it is not the shaft that the people desire so much as it is the honor of standing first in America. That for which the shaft stands is of inestimable value. To win it will give Licking county a reputation from coast to coast. It will be a monument that will commemorate the county's war activity for many years. This county has made a brilliant success in every effort so far and Licking does not intend to fail this time.

While Warren county is still in second place, Morrow county starts Monday on a drive with the object of winning the shaft. Last year Morrow county sold $40 of W. S. S. per capita —a national record. Last year Licking county's per capita sale was $25 and Licking was among the first in Ohio to reach its 1918 quota.  To date the per capita sale from June 1st follows: Licking. $4.00, Warren $3.92, Morrow $3.00, Ross $2.80  and a half dozen other counties not far behind. ...
As it would turn out, Licking took a licking.   The Newark Daily Advocate for September 2 reported the bad news:
Licking county lost out in the Victory shaft contest, the big $10,000 monument going to Morrow county on her record of a per capita sale of $14.43 as compared with a per capita sale of $10.79 in Licking county, according to announcement made this afternoon by County Chairman C. H. Spencer, who has spent the day at the state headquarters going over the returns with the state committee.

The total sale of War Savings Stamps in Licking county since June 1, Mr. Spencer reported, was $649,554. Based on a population of 61,809 for the county, the per capita sales in the period figured $10.79. Morrow county sold $241,106 in the same period. The population
of Morrow county is 16,815, making a per capita sale in the three months of $14.43. Warren county was third in the contest with a sale of $186,321, or $7.76 per capita. ...

No comments: