Thursday, August 29, 2013

Vol. 3 No. 52 A Track Museum Sans Pareil (Without Equal) and An Example of Amish Life

Continued from previous posting

The third day of Steve, Bill and George's excellent adventure found us aimlessly adrift in Amish country south of Canton, Ohio where preparations were well underway for the annual NFL Hall of Fame induction ceremonies the following week.  We elected to pass on that one. We stormed through the town of Millersburg, where a week earlier a friend, Dr. Sylvia Gleason, an ultra marathoner and former racing cyclist, had broken down on a bike ride from Columbus to Cleveland.  She was rescued by an Amish man on a steel/carbon fiber bike. He whipped out his cell phone and called for help from a friend with a truck.  The guy arrived, speaking low German, put Sylvia's bike in the truck and drove her to   Raber's an Amish bike shop four miles out of town  in the middle of nowhere.  The shop was closed so he called his sister who worked there and she came and opened the shop, got the parts Sylvia needed, and Sylvia left money for the owners and $10 dollars extra for letting her in the shop after hours.  Of note was that in Amish tradition, the shop had no electricity and was lighted by oil lamps that evening.  She saw that there were some very expensive bikes in the shop and was very grateful for the unsollicted help that she received.  The next day she got a phone call from the owner who said she had paid too much and should return to get her $10 and that he had also fixed the broken part of the bike.  When we stopped to see the shop it was closed, being Sunday, but we noted that the place was powered by solar cells, no electric wires running to the building.   Definitely some lessons to be learned about running a small business.  I don't think it's worth trying to teach this type of customer relations to 'corporate America'.

Raber's Bike Shop outside of Millersburg, Ohio

Eventually we arrived in the village of Sunbury, Ohio about 20 miles northeast of Columbus.    Sunbury is the home of Big Walnut High School whose track teams were coached for many years by Don "Red" Edwards.  Don still lives on the small farm where he grew up on the edge of town.  His boyhood home has been converted to a track and field museum containing a large collection of awards, medals, vaulting poles with a spike on the end going back to the pre vaulting box era , photographs, journals, stopwatches, etc., etc., etc.   The house is decorated in the Yellow and Red colors of Big Walnut.  Below are some of the pictures we took inside the 'museum'.
Red Edwards and Bill Schnier looking at a bamboo vaulting pole

Steve and Bill browsing and perusing

Red and Bill with the first issue of Track and Field News

Vol 1  No. 1  Feb. 1948

Cornelius Johnson 1936 Berlin

old track cards

Analog Stopwatches

Brutus Hamilton, Olympic Decathlete , later Cal Berkeley Coach

Charlie Betham  NCAA 880 champion

Publicity photo of Jerry Welbourne and Harry McKnight  Ohio Track Club 1953

West Coast Hurdler 1930's  Name?

Willie Davenport in a high school race in Ohio

Lower right gold medal won by first Ohio High School Cross Country Champ
Medallian with a C was a participant medal for all athletes taking part in the national scholastic championships held annually at the U. of Chicago.  Last held in 1932  due to the Great Depression.  I found it in an estate sale several years ago and donated it to the museum.

Even some football gear

Red's business card reads

Track and Field Memorabilia

Don Red Edwards
(740) 965-1918

11848 E. St. Rt. 37
Sunbury, OH 43074

Maybe you have some old stuff your children will throw in the trash some day.  If you want to give it a loving home, keep Red in mind.  Or if you want to see a great collection,  call Red and make an appointment to stop in.  

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