The SHAKER HISTORICAL SOCIETY, at 16740 South Park Blvd. in SHAKER HTS., was founded on 21 Oct. 1947 to preserve the Shaker heritage and that of the area. The society also runs the Shaker Historical Museum, which is housed at the same address. Caroline Piercy, author of The Valley of God's Pleasure, served as the catalyst in establishing the society. The first meeting was held on 13 Oct., when the charter was approved and a nonprofit corporation formed. The first president was William Slade, superintendent of schools. Former neighbors of the NORTH UNION SHAKERS donated many artifacts, some purchased at the auction in 1889 when the community disbanded. The artifacts were stored until 1956, when the society established a museum at Moreland Elementary School. Increasing school enrollment forced the museum to look elsewhere, and after several moves, it moved in Oct. 1970 to its present (1994) quarters. Frank Myers, long-time trustee and benefactor, donated his South Park Blvd. home to the society in Sept. 1970. The property was immediately transferred to the State of Ohio, giving it tax-exempt status and some financial assistance for capital improvements. Financial support for building maintenance, a professorial curator, purchase of artifacts, and operational expenses has been provided by the society's Board of Trustees and a women's committee, through dues from about 400 members, and endowment fund, and fundraising events. In addition to historical Shaker items, other museum artifacts reflect the community's heritage and that of early WARRENSVILLE TWP. On the second floor is the Nord Library, named in memory of volunteer curator Elizabeth Nord. The society offers free museum tours and monthly public programs, marks century home and local historic sites, and provides museum tours and curriculum units on Shakerism and local history for area schools. The current staff is comprised of a curatior, librarian, public relations officer, secretary, and volunteers.
Klyver, Richard. History of the Shaker Historical Society (1980).
Piercy, Caroline. The Valley of God's Pleasure (1951).
See also LIBRARIES, ARCHIVES & HISTORICAL SOCIETIES.