Historical Society Newsletter February 2024
February 1, 2024

Note to Members

Although our Museum is officially closed for the winter, our board continues to show up most Tuesday’s as usual. There are many ongoing projects to keep us busy this winter. Support from members and friends all over the community as well as those far and wide across the country, have enabled us to set our sights on things we had never imagined we’d ever be engaged in.  We’re stay on top of legal matters concerning our acquisition of the trolley station and most recently Minetta Spring kept us in the news and we have been discussing and planning on its restoration. 

Publicity on Facebook has spawned interest by The Butler Eagle newspaper to feature the Spring with a frontpage story, showing myself and Mayor Dean Zinkhan, exploring the interior of the old stone structure.  Armstong Cable Services has also expressed an interest in an interview on their TV cable program to talk about some of the history of the old roadside spring and our choice to preserve its history.

Last year, we attempted to reconstruct a door that would allow easy access to its interior and protect the spring, but excessive moisture this winter had expanded the wood structure and again made it useless. As warmer weather approaches, we plan to attack the problem again as well as applying some structural repairs to the stonework. A generous donation received this winter allows us the freedom to do upgrades as necessary.  We’re hoping to finish all of this before the acquisition of the Trolley Station is completed so we won’t be working on both at the same time. 

Our aggressive interest in these projects has greatly improved the public’s interest in our Evans City Area Historical Society, as well as our standing in the network of associated organizations.

We are pleased to announce that Joyce Beahm as joined our Society Board. We welcome Joyce and her enthusiasm for our area and its history.

Rick Reifenstein
President

In Memorium

Bud Baker
Audrey Smith in memory of Edward Smith

Bill & Linda Erwin
Nancy& Doug Leonberg in memory of Ellen

Nan Barton Kline
Mr & MrsWC Rahiser

Did we tell you about the weather?

As anyone knows, the weather in Evans City has left us with some lasting memories.  Floods have left their mark countless times. Some by rain storms, some by ice jams and on one occasion we even survived a tornado (more later). Here are some memories of the bast when we hiked up skirts and pant legs to tread the streets recovering from the results of spring thaws and summer storms. 

Flood of 1925

Flood of 1925 

Flood of 1925

Flood of the 1930s 

Flood of the 1930s

Flood of the 1930s 

Flood of 1925

Ice Jam of the 1950s

Snow of 1950

Snow of 1950

Tornado of 1985

Hurricane Ivan, 2004

From the Headlines, 1921

The Pittsburgh Gazette Times, Friday, September 23, 1921

Thousands Celebrate Road Opening In Butler County

Parades and Concert Feature Completion of Evans City Mars Highway

AUTOS USE NEW ROUTE, by Jess Boyle

Evans City, Pa Sept 22 – More that 5000 persons including public officials and other residents of Butler County, today celebrated the completion of the improved roadway between Evans City and Mars with automobile parades, a baseball game between teams composed of merchants of the two boroughs and an open-air band concert and mass meeting.

The new road built of reinforced concrete is six miles long and 11 feet wide and six inches thick the sides and eight inches in the middle. The cost was approximately $42,000 a mile, 75 percent of which was paid by the county and 25 percent by Adams and Forward Townships.

Mars Wins 13 to 10

The Mars baseball team defeated Evans City men 13 to 10. More than 100 automobiles let by Burgess C Fred Shaffer, accompanied the Evans City players to Mars over the stretch of road. 

In the evening more than 200 machines form the two towns ablaze with red fire and gaily decorated in charge of C Fred Hyle, chief marshal met in Callery, continued on to Mars and then returned to Evans City for the band concerts and meeting an Main and Washington St.

Chairman J G Brown introduced John J Wilson, formerly congressman from the Twenty-second district as the principal speaker. Mr Wilson congratulated the people on the achievement, which was, he said, the reward of their breadth of vision and the sturdy support they have given to the good road’s movement. H also paid a tribute to the State Highway Department, which furnished the preliminary engineering serviced for the project and co-operated in every way possible until the work was completed. Other speakers were OA Behm, president of Evans City Council., JN Dyke, George Rherman and Samuel Orter, commissioners of Butler County, William Catlin burgess of Mars and John dight of the Break Neck Valley Good Roads Association.

Praises Evans City

Mr Beahm in his address said Evans City, with its 3,700-population situated in the center of a prosperous oil and agricultural country, was among the most advanced boroughs in the state. The town is modernly illuminated with electricity, has a sanitary sere system, paved streets and in addition owns and operates int own water works system, The volunteer fire department, with a membership of 200 is considered one of the best in PA. according to Bulter Volunteer Firemen’s Association. 

In recent years Mr Beahm said Evans City has become popular for manufacturing sites due to its location on the main line of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad between New York and Chicago.

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