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Friday, May 6, 2016

New firefighting exhibit slated to open at museum

Friday, October 27, 2006

Putnam County Museum opens its newest exhibit "In Service to Putnam County: Firefighting History" from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. today.

The county is indebted to the men and women who have acted as firefighters over the years for their tireless service to the people of Putnam County.

Throughout the day, families can participate in demonstrations of the chemistry and physics behind firefighting led by Dave Roberts. For example, use a hand pump to create water pressure or observe how chemical reactions can create pressure for fighting fires. At 11 a.m., the museum will host a short ceremony honoring firefighters for their contributions to our community.

In the afternoon, Sparky the fire prevention dog will talk with children and pose for photos, thanks to the Greencastle Fire Dept. and the Madison Township Volunteer Fire Dept. Current fire trucks from the various volunteer and professional departments will be displayed in the museum's parking lot depending on their availability.

The highlight of the exhibit is the 1928 Greencastle Studebaker engine, on loan from the Friends of the Fire Department. The truck will "winter" at the museum through the end of the exhibit, in late February or early March.

In addition to the kerosene lanterns and brightly polished fire extinguishers on the truck, several volunteer and professional departments have loaned photos, equipment and gear from 100, 50, or 20 years ago to tell their stories.

Dorman Owen (Reelsville/Washington Township VFD) has also loaned about 20 of his collection of hundreds of miniature fire engines for a display in the Children's Area.

Through several oral history interviews collected by two DePauw Bonner Scholars, Ryan May and Carrie Birge, visitors will glimpse the hard work, dedication, and problem solving skills it takes to be a firefighter, as well as enjoy some truly great stories.

In addition to the firefighting exhibit, the Baugh family will be community curators on an exhibit on the life of Jim Baugh.

Visit the museum at 1105 N. Jackson St. in Greencastle to learn about and celebrate those who have served our county.

Museum hours are Tuesday-Friday from 1-4 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and by appointment. Group tours can be arranged, and the museum's education committee offers three special programs for students. Additional information is available at the website at www.co.putnam.in.us/Museum or by contacting museum director Stacy Klingler at 765-653-8419 or museum@co.putnam.in.us.

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