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Winnebago Historical Society storage vault completed, written heritage moved

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The Winnebago Historical Society recently announced that its fireproof and climate-controlled storage vault construction has been completed.

Winnebago County Historian Riley Lewis thanked Harms Construction, Nelson Electric for electrical and heating installation, and Dan Davis for painting and floor installation. Lewis said 10 people braved cold weather to help move the area’s written heritage into safe keeping in the new addition at the Mansion Museum. The helpers included Davis, Claudia and Joe Tillman, Laura and Dave Kudej, Harlan Rodberg, Cindy Carter, Noah Lewis, and Jim Oulman.

The men started installing racks while the women began working on more than 150 bound Forest City newspapers dating back to 1871. Lewis said it will ensure that Forest City and Winnebago County history will be protected as best as possible.

Lewis safely moved newspaper copies from the basement of the old Forest City Summit office to the bright, environmentally controlled vault should make our community happy. He also thanked them Mason City Globe Gazette for its cooperative efforts to make the project happen.

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On social media, former Summit employee Helen True fondly recalled seeing the now-saved records in the Summit basement when working there. Lori Ewing said that when she was a small child, her parents worked at the Summit. She noted that the papers survived the fire and that the community is certainly fortunate to have them preserved.


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