Monthly Archives: September 2014

Col. Nahorn Continues to Promote Local History on the Speaking Circuit

Col. Nahorn has continued to present talks and programs on local history topics in 2014 and 2015.  In September he spoke to the Avon Lake Historical Society on Amherst’s Old Spring and rediscovered Braun Brewery.

Col. Nahorn (far right) is joined by Museum contributor Mr. T. Jack Smith (Avon) and Mr. Gerry Vogel of the Avon Lake Public Library during Col. Nahorn's presentation.

Col. Nahorn (far right) is joined by Museum contributor Mr. T. Jack Smith (left, Avon) and Mr. Gerry Vogel of the Avon Lake Public Library during Col. Nahorn’s presentation.

On October 15 he will present a new program, “Academy of the Ridges: A Brief History of Lake Ridge Academy” at 7pm, for the North Ridgeville Historical Society.  The location is the Library on Bainbridge Road.  Lake Ridge Academy, an independent school, opened its doors in Sept. 1963, and it recently celebrated 50 years of educating youth.  Col. Nahorn will provide a brief overview of the School’s history, with a bit of a personal touch, as he graduated from L.R.A. in 2008 and in 2006 founded the School’s Archives department.

Original sign for Lake Ridge on Center Ridge Road, N. Ridgeville

Original sign for Lake Ridge on Center Ridge Road, N. Ridgeville

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On October 28 he will present “A Thirst for History: Amherst’s Old Spring & Rediscovered Braun Brewery” at 7pm for the Amherst Historical Society’s General Membership Meeting.  Location is the Grange Hall at the Sandstone Village Grounds of the Historical Society on Milan Ave.  A program that has already been well-received throughout the greater Lorain County community, Col. Nahorn will trace the history and a bit of geology behind the Old Spring, located in downtown Amherst, while placing a secondary focus on the recently rediscovered Braun Brewery cellars near the Spring site.

Braun Brewery Cellar, Amherst.

Braun Brewery Cellar, Amherst.

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On January 28 he will present the Museum’s signature program, “Indian Ridge Museum – from Old to New” at 7pm at the Lorain County History Center’s Starr House.  This will be a very appropriate program for the Elyria Historical Association as Col. Vietzen’s original Indian Ridge Museum was located in Elyria Township for 65 years.  As a native Elyrian, Col. Raymond C. Vietzen (1907-1995) graduated from Elyria High School (’26) and founded the Indian Ridge Museum in 1930, located on a corner of the Vietzen family homestead on West Ridge Road.  He had spent 65 years in Archaeology, both in the field and laboratory.  An author of 17 books and founder of the Indian Ridge Museum, his work is still being referenced today. Col. Nahorn founded the New Indian Ridge Museum in 2000 to preserve and re-establish the original Museum while working closely to preserve local historic and prehistoric artifacts at the Shupe Homestead in Amherst.  The program provides a background of Col. Vietzen’s Indian Ridge Museum and introduces the new Museum and its goals for the future.

Indian Ridge Museum in Elyria (1930-1995)

Indian Ridge Museum in Elyria (1930-1995)

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If you are interested in having Col. Nahorn speak to your group, please contact us via the form on this website.  Here is a list of programs that he provides: 

“Indian Ridge Museum – From Old to New: A History of the Indian Ridge Museum” (long and short versions available)

“Early Amherst, Ohio – Prehistory to Early Historic History”

“Early Northern Ohio Prehistory – from Paleo to Erie”

“What is a Watershed – Land-use Affects Water Quality and Stream Bank Integrity; Focusing on the Beaver Creek Watershed”

“A Thirst for History – Amherst’s Old Spring & Rediscovered Braun Brewery”

“Academy of the Ridges: A Brief History of Lake Ridge Academy”

“Glover’s Cave: The Archaeological Site”

Custer’s Boyhood Boot Preserved

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A painting of Gen. Custer by Col. Raymond C. Vietzen.

General George Armstrong Custer’s boyhood boot is now preserved at the New Indian Ridge Museum.  An artifact of national significance, the boot resided in Col. Vietzen’s Elyria Indian Ridge Museum for several years.

Gen. Custer’s “boldness and daring during the Civil War won him the rank of Brigadier General in 1863.  He later commanded the 7th Cavalry during the western Indian wars.  Custer and his entire command died in the battle of Little Big Horn Montana Territory, June 26, 1876 (Ohio Historical Society historical marker).”

In 1984, the boot was acquired by Col. Vietzen, an historian who had closely studied Custer.  This small, child-sized boot, with accompanying blacksmith-made spur, was on display in one of Vietzen’s museum cases where he kept his prized Custer memorabilia.  A woman who lived in New Runley, Ohio, Custer’s birthplace, had delivered the spur and boot as a donation to Col. Vietzen’s Museum.  She had received the boot from a relative.  This relative received the boot from a Custer family member.  The accompanying spur was made by Custer’s father, a blacksmith by trade.  (At the New Indian Ridge Museum, we preserve a portion of a wooden bellows reportedly from Custer’s father’s blacksmith shop that was located in Tontogany, OH.)

Col. Ron Sauer, a friend of and authority on Col. Vietzen and his Indian Ridge Museum acquired the boot after the Museum was closed.  He was personally told the aforementioned information as documented above, directly by Col. Vietzen.  In fact, Col. Sauer had visited Col. Vietzen’s Museum earlier in the same day, in 1984, when Col. Vietzen acquired the boot.  On September 5, 2014, Col. Nahorn acquired the boot from the Col. Sauer collection.  We are very pleased to preserve this important documented piece of history.

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Gen. Custer’s boyhood boot and spur with Col. Vietzen’s original tag from Indian Ridge Museum.

Custer's birthplace at New Rumley, OH. - painting by Col. Vietzen.

Custer’s birthplace at New Rumley, OH. – painting by Col. Vietzen.

Col. Vietzen stands by the Custer birthplace - only the foundation remains.

Col. Vietzen stands by the Custer birthplace – only the foundation remains.