Clark County, Ohio

History and Genealogy



Sketch of the Clark County Agricultural Society


From The History of Clark County, Ohio
Chicago: W.H. Beers & Co., 1881 - Page 344


At a meeting of the citizens of Clark County, held on Saturday, the 25th of January, 1840, pursuant to a call, at the court house in Springfield, for the purpose of organizing a county agricultural society, on motion, John R. Leman was appointed Chariman and Will Spencer Secretary. On motion, the law of Ohio relating to agricultural societies was read. Ira Paige offered a resolution requesting the President (Chairman?) to nominate suitable persons, who shall be a committee, to report a list of officers for the society, whereupon the following persons were nominated, viz.: Ira Paige, Mathew Bonner, Charles Ward, William H. Harris, Anthony Bird, John H. Cartmel. Some remarks were made by John M. Gallagher and by E. H. Cummings. The committee reported the following as suitable persons for officers of the society: John R. Leman, President; James Bogle, Vice President; W. W. Spencer, Recording Secretary; Benjamin Moore, Corresponding Secretary; Adams Stewart, Treasurer, S. G. Moler, W. G. Serviss, John A. Alexander, Executive Committee.

"Resolved, That the doings of this meeting be published in the Republic." It is supposed that the meeting adjourned, though the records do not mention it.

At the next meeting, which was of the Board of Officers, various items of business were transacted, the principal of which was the selection of a committee of three from each township to promote the objects of the society.

The Township Committees were:

Springfield — Andrew Gowdy, Jacob Wolf, George Warder. Harmony — Herriman Chamberlin, Mathew Bonner, Thomas Wright. Pleasant — John H. Cartmel, William Coffee, John L. Mowder. Green — John Budd, John A. Stewart, John Luce. Madison — Rowland Brown, Alexander Waddle, Doctors Houston, Joel Van Meter, malyne D. Baker, Samuel Drummon. Moorfield — William H. Harris, James Foley, James Humphrey. Bethel — Ebenezer Porter, David Lowry, John Menich. Pike — Samuel Black, William Spencer, John Thomas. German — John Beman, Daniel Kiblinger, John M. Calla. Meeting adjourned to meet Friday, March 6.

At a meeting held June 14, same year, Adam Stewart, Ira Paige, E. H. Cummings and Charles Anthony were appointed a Committee of Arrangements, to prepare for the first fair. At the next meeting, held on the 19th of August, 1840, it was reported that all who had been invited to act as Judges had accepted except Allen Trimble, and that Col. James, of Urbana, would deliver the address. Committee on Premiums reported a schedule, which would absorb the sum of $205, to be distributed through a list of sixty-seven awards.

During the years 1841 and 1842, the record shows that fairs were held, officers elected in regular order, etc. February 22, 1843, it was ordered that all officers hold their places during the coming year, and that the meeting adjourn subject to the call of the President. From the fact that there is no record of any fairs or proceedings until 1853, the above may have been an easy way of "going out of business." The next entry in the record book informs us that a meeting of citizens assembled in the City Hall Saturday, February 12, 1853, and organized an agricultural society by electing officers and a Board of Managers. June 11, 1853, "the committee reported the purchase of ten acres of ground of William Huntington, at $120 per acre, which was approved." Since that date, no less than seven other parcels of land have been added by purchase, making a tract of about forty-six acres of highly improved ground, which is the scene of the annual county fair. The fair grounds are within the limits of the city of Springfield, and are used largely for general purposes, such as camp meetings, militia encampments, conventions, re-unions, etc. There is a half-mile track on the grounds, besides ample stabling, which makes it a favorite place for the meeting of those who are interested in the breeding and training of horses. In May, 1876, the County Commissioners bought the grounds from the Agricultural Society, and the property is now owned by the county. During the late war, the fair grounds were used as the camps of general rendezvous for several bodies of volunteer troops.

The Ohio State Fair was held on these grounds in the years 1870 and 1871.

During the early history of the first organization, the fairs were held in different parts of the county.

In the list of officers on the following page it will be observed that the names of the Managers, or Directors, have been omitted. This was done on account of want of space, and the large number of names included in the list. The vacancies are on account of not having access to the records, and the incompleteness of the records themselves:

OFFICERS OF THE CLARK COUNTY AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY FROM 1840 TO 1881, EXCEPT MANAGERS

YEAR. PRESIDENT. VICE PRESIDENT. RECORDING SECRETARY. CORRESPONDING SECRETARY. TREASURER.
1840 J. A. Leman James Bogle W. W. Spencer Benj. Moore Adams Stewart
1841 Wm. H. Harris James Bogle W. W. Spencer Jeremiah Warder Adams Stewart
1842 W. G. Serviss Ira Paige W. W. Spencer E.H. Cummings Chas. Cavileer
1843* W. G. Serviss Ira Paige W. W. Spencer E. H. Cummings Chas. Cavileer
1853* Wm. Hunt Jacob Peirce Wm. B. Miller Geo. H. Frey Jas. Humphreys
1854 Wm. Hunt Jacob Peirce T. J. Warden Geo. H. Frey W. S. Field
1855 W.m Hunt Jacob Peirce A. J. Paige† S. G. Moler W. S. Field
1856 Wm. Hunt Jacob Peirce John Howell S. G. Moler W. S. Field
1857 Wm. Hunt Chas. M. Clark John Howell S. G. Moler W. S. Field
1858 Wm. Hunt Chas. M. Clark John Howell S. G. Moler W. S. Field
1859 Wm. Hunt Chas. M. Clark John Howell T. J. Warder W. S. Field
1860 Wm. Hunt Chas. M. Clark A. D. Small E. M. Doty W. S. Field
1861 Wm. Hunt John Snyder J. T. Warden John Howell W. S. Field
1862 Wm. Hunt L. B. Sprague J. T. Warden John Howell W. S. Field
1863 A. Waddle John Howell J. R. Swan C. M. Clark W. S. Field
1864 A. Waddle John Howell J. R. Swan C. M. Clark W. S. Field
1865 L. B. Sprague David Shaffer John H. Blose E. A. Williams W. S. Field
1866 Peter Sintz David Shaffer James Foley E. A. Williams James Bacon
1867 Peter Sintz David Shaffer David Thatcher Amos Whiteley James Bacon
1868 Amos Whiteley L. B. Sprague Smith McArthur Asa S. Bushnell Luther Brown
1869          
1870 L. B. Sprague Peter Sintz Quincy A. Petts Robt. Johnson Luther Brown
1871 Peter Sintz A. R. Ludlow D. C. Ballentine Quincy A. Petts Luther Brown
1872          
1873 J. J. Scurff J. Monahan Oscar T. Martin James Foley D. P. Jefferies
1874          
1875 L. B. Sprague J.S.R. Hazzard C. E. Winters   D. P. Jefferies
1876 J.S.R. Hazzard        
1877 J.S.R. Hazzard Smith Wallace L. B. Sprague   D.P. Jefferies
1878 Smith Wallace W. H. Garlough L. B. Sprague   S. F. McGrew
1879 J.S.R. Hazzard W. H. Garlough L. B. Sprague   S. F. McGrew
1880 J.S.R. Hazzard   L. B. Sprague    
1881 William Jenkins C. R. Rohrer L. B. Sprague    

* No record for the ten years from 1843 to 1853.
† Resigned. L. H. Olds appointed to fill vacancy.