As an MOV native, it’s hard for me to think of this area other than how I’ve known it my whole life. This is why I’ve always loved history. History allows me to travel back in time and visualize, for one, how this area looked before I was born. Photographs of bygone days are an added bonus to help me see firsthand what my beloved southeastern Ohio looked like. Enter the Coffee Break segment I attended this past Monday in New Matamoras, Ohio. With a respectable turnout out of about 20 or so patrons, it was a great place to surround myself with fellow history lovers.
Jim Moore and John Miller (both of whom have a fond fascination for New Matamoras) were the presenters. Jim was in charge of the slides and John provided the background information for each picture. It was amazing just to sit and listen for over an hour the details these two men were able to deliver without hesitation. The data they have stored from their own memories is uncanny. Names of businesses, names of people, locations of streets before they actually had names – if someone could think of it, they could name it. My mind was reeling trying to keep track of all the information.
For instance, I never knew New Matamoras once had a furniture store, hotels, and a meat market (Kollman Furniture; the Central Hotel and also the Green Hotel; and Danver’s Meat Market to be exact). Need more? Ever heard of Cline Livery, Enterprise Newspaper, or Cunningham’s Morturay? These were all new to me. A few other businesses mentioned were the Barnhart and Chandler gas station, Hupp’s Appliance, and Gautschi Dentist. All of these were once part of New Matamoras, and that is absolutely fascinating to me. It made me realize just how much history one place can possess. More importantly, it made me realize how rich in history the MOV is and how lucky we are as residents to live in an area where multiple facets of the past surround us every day.