After a long, cold, snowy winter, all eyes are fixed on the coming of spring. For me, spring is a time of renewal and house cleaning, a time for new beginnings. As newly elected president of the Lane County Historical Society, it is my goal to revive and refresh the life of the museum by reviewing its past and moving it into the future by making changes and trying new things.
To begin this process, I would like to welcome Judy Fullmer, Joyce Hineman, Barb Newberry and Dale Pike to the board of directors and Tamie Linenberger and Connie Hanks to the re-established committee. The addition of these new minds and fresh ideas gives me a strong feeling that great things are going to happen at the museum. I would like to add your name to this list as well.
My top priority is house cleaning. With the new addition and wonderful donations to the storage rooms, we have been able to temporarily relocate the items in the old storage rooms to the new addition and purchase most of the shelving units needed to inventory, organize and store our artifacts properly. This is quite an extensive process that is just getting started and will require additional funding and many volunteer hours to accomplish. The next step is to move all of the items currently being stored in a storage unit into the addition and/or the storage building on site to eliminate the expense of the storage unit.
Other house cleaning goals are to resolve the struggle with the insurance company over repairs to the roof of the museum damaged by the hailstorm in May of 2018 and putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls in the temporary exhibit room. Hopefully, the interior painting will start soon and the repairs to the museum and the roof of the sod house can begin as soon as the temperature rises and the weather cooperates.
As we move into the future, a review of our bylaws and focusing on membership, volunteerism and fund raising is at the top of the list. By reviewing the bylaws the hope is to remove some of the legal jargon making them easier to interpret and aligning them with the desires of the current Historical Society board and its members.
Increasing and maintaining membership, volunteerism and funding is always a top priority. Without these three things the museum would not/could not exist. The Historical Society receives slightly less than $20,000 per year in county appropriations. That means the remaining operating funds must come through donations and fund raising. Our expenses for 2018 totaled slightly more than $45,000. You can do the math. So, this is where I make my plea for donations through memorial giving. The Memorial Day letter is our primary source of funding but not the only source. We also generate funds through memberships, the Annual meeting, spring and fall tours, the Fall Fest, the gift shop, raffles, homemade ice cream, and other assorted fund raising activities throughout the year. In order to meet our financial needs and move forward, I invite you to take part in the preservation of Lane County history and honoring your loved ones through your tax-deductible contributions to the Lane County Historical Society.
I thank each of you for your past and future contributions and welcome any new and fresh ideas to help move our museum into the future. With your help I know we can do great things together. If you have any interest in serving on the committee, helping with projects, painting, gardening, making ice cream, sharing ideas or volunteering in any way, please contact me or any board member. We would be thrilled to hear from you!
Lane Co. Historical Society, President