Olney Heritage Museum Open House on Oct. 23
Olney Heritage Museum (OHM) is hosting an open-house event on Tuesday, Oct. 23 from 3 – 7 p.m. at 213 E. Main St. Best Bayou Bites food truck will be present to serve guests.
The museum committee has emphasized the importance of community support to help increase awareness about the history of Olney while preserving historical artifacts that may be viewed by future generations.
Although Olney was incorporated in 1909, a museum was never established. While many local establishments pay tribute to significant people and events, the museum will serve as an extension of existing displays and memorials throughout the city.
OHM Director Claire Meschkat said the museum features two distinct sides. The west side, which will remain a work in progress, features collectibles, antiques and information relevant to Olney’s history, while the east side is filled with interactive displays for children.
“We want people to know that all ages can experience the history of Olney in various ways,” Meschkat said.
The Air Tractor fuselage, tornado simulator, and interactive water table on the east side may not be completed in time for the open house, but Meschkat says the displays should be ready by Christmas. Meanwhile, the younger visitors can look forward to playing in the children’s village that features a general store, a drug store and a telephone company. OHM committee member Trina Johnson assisted with signage, furniture and other intricate details.
Committee member Kathryn Piegat is overseeing the installation of the newspaper gallery. Piegat said she is proud of the vision for the “Headlines through History” display that features significant newspaper headlines, stories and ads from the birth of the original paper in 1908 through the 60s. The newspaper gallery will have interactive features that allow visitors to listen to historical data and view videos on the antique printing press along with other machines used prior to the digital age of the press.
The museum advisory group will work closely with the museum board and committee to ensure inclusivity for all Olney residents present and past. OHM’s mission is to “collect, preserve and exhibit the rich history of Olney for the education and enjoyment for the present and future generations.”