Delphos Canal Commission

Delphos Canal Commission Three floors (17,000 sq.ft.) of local history featuring the canal and transportation, but also including many other facets of life in earlier times.
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The Delphos Canal Commission is a non-profit organization whose purpose is the acquisition and preservation of articles relevant to the history of the Miami and Erie Canal and to the history of the City of Delphos, Ohio, and surrounding townships and villages. Towards the end, the Delphos Canal Commission Museum shall maintain standards of operation for both archival and three – dimensional objects which are useful to the understanding of the heritage of Delphos, Ohio, and its environments. The Canal Commission has an archival collection the from the entire historic period of the region, from an 1863 note to letters home home from the Ohio 116th to hundreds of manuscript pages once used by the Paul Whiteman Band. We have an 1846 log house reconstructed in our museum. There are canal related artifacts from tiny bottles filled with abandoned medicines to the parts of the “Marguerite” that had been pulled from the Miami and Erie Canal in 1989 by 57 Delphos youngsters. Our purpose it to preserve, restore, and recreate the history of Miami and Erie Canal and the history of the city of Delphos. The Delphos Canal Commission is proud of its strong alliance with the commercial district and its growing status as one of the regions most knowledgeable and progressive historic agencies.

Looking forward to September!
06/02/2020

Looking forward to September!

We are proud to announce that this year's festival will be held September 17 - 20. This event wouldn't be possible without the support of local companies who provide valuable products, services and funding. Are you able to sponsor this years Canal Days and help make our hometown festival a great success? With your help we are one step closer to advancing the lot project and improving the downtown area. Please help if you can. Thank you!

It’s that time again!
05/28/2020
Canal cleanup set

It’s that time again!

DELPHOS — The Delphos Canal Commission has set the annual summer canal cleanup for June 20. Volunteers are to meet on the canal parking lot at 8:30 a.m.

It hasn’t stopped raining so time to get the plants out!
05/28/2020

It hasn’t stopped raining so time to get the plants out!

Miami and Erie Canal Corridor Association
05/15/2020

Miami and Erie Canal Corridor Association

Canal Trail used for pilgrimage. Wednesday, May 13.
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Priests and seminarian walk pilgrimage from Delphos to Spencerville

On the feast of Our Lady of Fatima, Fr. Dennis Walsh, Fr. Tony Vera, Fr. Scott Perry and Seminarian Joseph Mominee made a pilgrimage - “a journey with a spiritual purpose” as Fr. Scott Perry explained in a YouTube video the day prior - from Delphos to Spencerville to pray for the end of the pandemic. Along the way they carried a large crucifix and the names and intentions of their parishioners.

The pilgrimage marks the 104th anniversary of the Our Lady of Fatima, which was a Marian apparition or said another way an appearance of Mary the Mother of Jesus to Three children in Fatima, Portugal. Several Marian Apparitions have occurred throughout history the one that occurred at Fatima was granted a canonical coronation by Pope Pius X11 on May 13, 1946 on the 30th anniversary.

The children actually experienced the apparitions six times beginning on May 13th and ending on October 13. Millions have made the pilgrimage to Fatima over the years. The clergy are making the trip this year to commemorate the event and to also bring awareness to our current battle with the Corona virus.
Ironic since two of the three children who experienced the apparitions, Francisco and Jacinta Marto died within the next year to the flu pandemic.

Part of their goal for the ten-mile trek was to spiritually unite with their parishioners, who they asked to submit their prayer intentions prior to the walk. “The purpose of this spiritual journey is really to pray for all of you; to pray for all the parishioners of St. John the Evangelist, St. John the Baptist, and St. Patrick,” Fr. Scott Perry said on YouTube

Photos shared on Facebook by Don Wiechart

Is warm weather here to stay? Time to get the wash out on the line. Check out our latest window display to jog your memo...
05/14/2020

Is warm weather here to stay? Time to get the wash out on the line. Check out our latest window display to jog your memory of helping mother get that laundry clean!

After much discussion, our June 5th License to Cruise is cancelled. However, we are still, at this time, planning on kic...
05/14/2020

After much discussion, our June 5th License to Cruise is cancelled. However, we are still, at this time, planning on kicking off our 2020 Summer License to Cruise on July 11th. We appreciate your understanding, and we will Cruise again in July!

We may be closed, but we’re still working here at your museum! Check out this booth from the Line Up Restaurant (1967-19...
05/14/2020

We may be closed, but we’re still working here at your museum! Check out this booth from the Line Up Restaurant (1967-1991) that was recently donated. Do you have any cool memories of the Line Up? We’d love to hear them!

We're unsure of our actual date when we can re-open, but until then, Happy May! We hope to see you again most likely, mi...
05/01/2020

We're unsure of our actual date when we can re-open, but until then, Happy May! We hope to see you again most likely, mid-June. As always, stay safe and have a good weekend!

We’re not sure our exact date when we can re-open, but until then...
04/24/2020

We’re not sure our exact date when we can re-open, but until then...

We had hoped to have another Afternoon Tea this month, but, things changed! Please enjoy our Tea for Two window display....
04/23/2020

We had hoped to have another Afternoon Tea this month, but, things changed! Please enjoy our Tea for Two window display. Stay safe and we can’t wait to see everyone again!

04/17/2020
Delphos Canal Commission

Someone bought a record on eBay and tonight we played it and recorded it. It was recorded 1966 by 11 year old Becki Jo Cross of Delphos, Ohio. It's a 45 with four Gospel songs. Here's one side.

Does anyone know Becki Jo Cross? Does she still live in Delphos? Does anyone remember this recording?

**The record starts to skip with about 30 seconds left. It does it on both sides.

Becki Jo Cross sings Gospel songs.

04/17/2020

Someone bought a record on eBay and tonight we played it and recorded it. It was recorded 1966 by 11 year old Becki Jo Cross of Delphos, Ohio. It's a 45 with four Gospel songs. Here's one side.

Does anyone know Becki Jo Cross? Does she still live in Delphos? Does anyone remember this recording?

**The record starts to skip with about 30 seconds left. It does it on both sides.

Apparently I didn't link the video to the post. The video is in the Video section. I'll try again to join them.

04/16/2020

Thought this might be a bit cheery when snow is in the forecast. Our player piano, possibly the most enjoyed item here in your museum. (FYI, it’s hard to play the player piano and record at the same time, hence, it is a bit shaky). Have a great weekend and stay safe!

In keeping with documenting how Delphos gets through this pandemic, here’s a few ways Easter is observed. Live streaming...
04/12/2020

In keeping with documenting how Delphos gets through this pandemic, here’s a few ways Easter is observed. Live streaming, YouTube, Zoom, in our cars. What did you and your family do in observance of Easter or Passover? Post your pics in comments below. Stay safe and, as always, thank you for your support.

The Canal Museum is also collecting items pertaining to the COVID 19 pandemic.  Any suggestions or items are welcome.
04/10/2020
Indiana Historical Society Begins Building A Coronavirus Collection

The Canal Museum is also collecting items pertaining to the COVID 19 pandemic. Any suggestions or items are welcome.

The Indianapolis-based institution is gathering documents and other items that will one day help tell the story of the coronavirus pandemic. Historians are asking the public to help.

Hey folks, a favor to ask.  To business owners who have signs on their shop doors concerning the COVID 19 pandemic, coul...
04/09/2020

Hey folks, a favor to ask. To business owners who have signs on their shop doors concerning the COVID 19 pandemic, could you please keep those signs when this is all over? Bring them to the Canal Museum when we are open again or message us and we'll pick them up. We'd like to document all experiences in Delphos during this historic time. And anyone else who has items concerning the COVID 19 pandemic in Delphos we'd be happy to hear about, and possibly collect, those, too. Let's document this incredible episode in our country's history so those who follow us will know what happened.

Let's see if you can guess where this picture was taken in 1908. We will let you know our records show the names of thes...
04/06/2020

Let's see if you can guess where this picture was taken in 1908. We will let you know our records show the names of these two fine ladies to be Ella Kramer and Nellie Norris Weger. The horse remains unidentified (!). Have a healthy and safe week, Delphos! UPDATE: This picture was taken near the intersection of Main St. and 3rd St. Commercial Bank building is on the left and the Gemke Brothers and Busch Corner Hardware is on the right (later torn down for the drive thru next to Ace Hardware)

Let's play a game! We'll post a pic of a building, with a short description, and when you're out getting some fresh air,...
03/30/2020

Let's play a game! We'll post a pic of a building, with a short description, and when you're out getting some fresh air, post a selfie in front of the building and identify what it's currently being used for today. Today's building: This building was once a massive hotel, at one time one of the largest hotels in the state. What is it today? Post your selfies in our comment section and any memories you may have of the building. Have a great day and stay safe!

Family portrait during the 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic.  Notice the cat.
03/29/2020

Family portrait during the 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic. Notice the cat.

Spanish Flu 😷 1918, family portrait.

Today’s facts come from the pamphlet, “Everything You Always Wanted to Know But Didn’t Think to Ask About the Miami & Er...
03/26/2020

Today’s facts come from the pamphlet, “Everything You Always Wanted to Know But Didn’t Think to Ask About the Miami & Erie Canal”: As a companion to the easterly Ohio and Erie canal, the Miami and Erie served an important part of the state’s attempts to open the interior to trade and commerce and even a quick glance at a state map will indicate that most of the oldest cities in Ohio were established along the canal routes. The Miami and Erie made possible the rapid growth of Western Ohio and provided both income and fortunes to thousands of early settlers in that part of the state. Planned as a connector between Cincinnati and Port Lawrence/Toledo, the Miami & Erie would be built through some of the most challenging country in Ohio. Miami canal began July 21, 1825, completed November 28, 1828; Miami extension began March 23, 1833, completed December 17, 1844; Wabash and Erie canal began July 1, 1837, completed March 27, 1842. The three canal authorities were combined and the whole renamed the Miami and Erie Canal in 1849.

We will be posting Delphos history later this week, but today, let us focus our attention to the present. We are living ...
03/24/2020

We will be posting Delphos history later this week, but today, let us focus our attention to the present. We are living through a historical moment, where words like "quarantine", "shelter in place" and "social distancing" are now part of our everyday language. Our trustee, Bob, asked a very good question: How are we documenting what we are currently living to share with future generations? Pictures? Journals? Social Media? Please comment if you would like to share your thoughts with us. We thank you for your continued support.

Folks, we need some help.  The boiler in the old Commercial Bank building has developed a glitch.  It's not working.  As...
03/21/2020

Folks, we need some help. The boiler in the old Commercial Bank building has developed a glitch. It's not working. As the boiler is the only source of heat in the building right now we're forced to use electric heaters for the renters, which is not an ideal situation.
To get the boiler up and running again will cost about $6,500. If you'd like to help you can send donations to Delphos Canal Commission, PO Box 256, Delphos OH 45833. All donations are tax deductible and very much appreciated. 🥰

In our Military Display Room, you’ll find examples of War Ration books. During World War II, rationing went into effect ...
03/19/2020

In our Military Display Room, you’ll find examples of War Ration books. During World War II, rationing went into effect to control distribution of scarce resources. Sugar, coffee, meat, cheese, butter, margarine, canned milk and processed foods were among food items rationed to help with the war effort. Imagine if today we rationed toilet paper?

New Bremen Historic Association
03/16/2020

New Bremen Historic Association

With all the current interest in the Corona virus, here's a look back at the Cholera Epidemic of 1849 and town of Amsterdam, which ceased to exist. No photos of the town from back then, but a present day map of the area, with Route 66 on the left, the railroad on the right and Amsterdam Road at the bottom. Local history you may not be aware of.


Amsterdam & the Cholera Epidemic

The cholera epidemic of 1849 resulted in a high number of deaths. In an account by Charles Boesel (1814-1885), he stated that from a population of about 700 people, there were 150 who died of the disease. Church records of St. Paul and St. Peter's Churches indicate that 122* people died from St. Paul Church and between July 27th and August 18th, 50 from St. Peter's. These were the only two churches in town at that time. A few of these deaths were attributed to scarlet fever, typhoid, or malaria, however the majority of the deaths were caused by cholera. These victims were buried in a mass grave in the village cemetery on Herman Street across from St. Paul Church.

* Research shows that 109 cholera deaths were recorded in the St. Paul records from 7/11/1849-9/9/1849.

AMSTERDAM – A CHOLERA GHOST TOWN
from “The Evening Leader” – 10/16/1999
by Katy (Berning) Gilbert

The Community of Amsterdam

“The Asiatic cholera epidemic spread across the country and arrived in Auglaize County in June of 1849. Many children were orphaned with no one to care for them. It was reported in Minster that the deaths were so rapid that bodies, in crude coffins, were gathered twice each day and taken to the cemetery for burial without benefit of mourning or religious ceremonies.

A simple sign, such as a piece of white cloth hung on the front door, indicated the presence of another victim or victims. The deceased were buried four tiers deep in two trenches, each seven feet wide. The collected coffins were buried twice a week by Joseph Bussing, a man who lived three miles west of Minster, with the aid of a Mr. Rumping and two other helpers. Theodore Dickman, who was a lad at that time, recalled counting 27 lamp-black coffins stacked among the hazel bushes at the cemetery waiting for burial.

Of all the pestilential diseases, cholera is perhaps the most awe-inspiring. It may run so rapid a course that a man in good health at daybreak might be dead and buried by nightfall.

The fear of cholera saw the beginning of sanitary awakening in Europe and this country and led to the development of public health programs in the world. The disease is characterized by profuse diarrhea, vomiting, muscle cramps, dehydration and collapse. It is contracted by the ingestion of water or food contaminated by the feces of cholera victims, but since the bacteria remains with a majority of patients for two weeks or less, there is rarely a vector or carrier in the usual sense.

Contamination may be caused by cockroaches or houseflies who have feasted on the feces of patients, or an infected person with unwashed hands may handle food to be consumed by others. Sewage-contaminated water supplies, however, have been the major cause of serious epidemics.
The Town of Amsterdam

Amsterdam was located between Minster and New Bremen on the Piqua and St. Marys Road (now Ohio 66). The original plat was 20 acres, which lay on both sides of the proposed Miami and Erie Canal and crossed the Piqua and St. Marys Road approximately a quarter of a mile.

There were 65 lots in the town, with the average size being 52’ x 132’. On March 28, 1837, 10 outlots were added, bringing the total to 160.15 acres. When cholera struck in 1849, 57 of the 75 lots and outlots had been sold.

The town of Amsterdam was platted and entered for record August 10, 1837 at St. Marys, then a part of Mercer County. (Auglaize County was not created until 1848.) The approximate borders of Amsterdam and its outlots were from Amsterdam Road on the north, west to where the railroad track is now, south to Wuebker Road, east for approximately ¼ mile, and back to Amsterdam Road.

Stories from the past indicate Amsterdam died with the cholera epidemic in the summer of 1849 and the town was soon forgotten. The only remaining evidence of Amsterdam today is Amsterdam Road, which was North Street in the original plat (see accompanying plat map).

My grandparents, born in the 1880s, were not sure where the town had been. They knew it was in the area of Amsterdam Road, but were unsure of the exact location. The irony is that my grandmother was born in a house on Amsterdam Road and it had been located in the original town of Amsterdam. The land was bought in 1864, 15 years after the cholera epidemic.

The area listed as outlots 51-65 and outlot 1 are where Pizza Hut, Gilberg’s Furniture Store, Lube Express and the newest New Bremen water tower are located.

Hearsay has it that the town of Amsterdam was created as a “buffer zone” between the Catholics of Minster and the Protestants of New Bremen, who brought their religious feuds from the old country.

In the 1930s and 1940s, the Amsterdam neighbors were Catholic and Protestant. Farmers and their wives helped each other with threshing, butchering and quilting. They celebrated life together. Births, weddings, anniversaries and deaths were times to get together, support each other, and enjoy each other’s company.”

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was written by Kathryn Ann (Berning) Gilbert, who passed away on February 27, 2006, just 2 weeks before her 68th birthday after a 4-month battle with cancer. Katy also quoted an article which had appeared in the April 1996 issue of “The Towpath” about Louise (Wehrman) Finke, whose mother died in the cholera epidemic while still holding her baby daughter, Louise, in her arms.

Cholera Plague In New Bremen

As remembered through hearsay by Mrs. Finke

She Was Rescued As A Babe in herDead Mother's Arms

[from the N.B. Sun – April 6, 1939]

Referring to a picture in a recent issue of the SUN of the monument on the St. Augustine Cemetery at Minster erected in memory of the victims of this Section who died during the cholera epidemic over three-quarters of a century ago, Mrs. Charles Garmhausen of Warren, Ohio, writes the SUN to call attention to the fact that her mother, Mrs. Louise Finke, who several weeks ago celebrated her 90th birthday, is perhaps the only resident of New Bremen today who has recollection of incidents harking back to the dreadful times following the ravages of the much feared malady of those early pioneer days. Of the actual suffering and sorrow, Mrs. Finke cannot remember anything because she was a mere babe when both her parents, Frederick and Marie (Schoenfeld) Wehrman, were taken in rapid succession as victims of the cholera back in 1849.

The way Mrs. Finke remembers the story as told her by her foster parents and the way she has frequently rehearsed it to her children, she was about five months of age when the epidemic broke out and her father was one of the victims. Burial had to be made without delay as the citizens were dying one after the other and the supply of caskets had run out so that the lifeless forms were laid in rudely constructed boxes and buried as hastily as possible. The men returning from the burial of her father and coming to the house to look after the ailing mother found her cold in death with the child still resting in her arms snuggled to the lifeless breast of the mother who had loved her. Before making disposition of the mortal remains of the mother, diligent search was made for a place to leave the child.

As a last resort, her uncle finally appealed to a Mrs. Wilhelmi, then residing at Lock Two, where Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius Heinfeld now reside, and though she had already taken in four orphans up till then, her faith and inbred mother-love opened her heart and home for just one more tiny baby which was cared for with as much affection and concern as if it had been her very own child. Soon the child was known as Louise Wilhelmi, and retained that name until it came time for her confirmation, to be received into membership of the St. Paul Church. The pastor, Rev. Carl Heise, felt conscience-bound to inform the child of her real name, and after consulting with the foster parents, it was agreed that he impart the information. Mrs. Finke to this day remembers how shocked she was and what days of anguish she went through when she found that she was an orphan and had grown up under an assumed name.

However, the kindness and love showered on her by Mr. and Mrs. Wilhelmi during her childhood days are always a source of fond remembrance for Mrs. Finke, and to this day she honors the remembrance of them who took the place of her real parents, and enjoys to tell the story of how affectionate they were and always showed deep concern in her welfare. By this time, however, the community had recovered from the ill effects of the cholera epidemic and things in general were moving in the even tenure of their way. Louise Wehrman, as she was then known, was now obliged to shift for herself, and she earned her own living until she entered into wedlock with the late Captain Henry Finke and reared a family of seven children without a single death in the family outside of her husband who passed away 28 years ago.

Mrs. Finke's is but one of the sad stories which had their origin in the year when cholera raged in this part of Ohio and almost wiped out the young settlement in the primeval forest where it had been founded 15 years prior to the epidemic. Most of the tales known now are such as have come through tradition from parents and grandparents.

[Besides Louise Wehrman's parents, there were 3 more Wehrmans who died within this 2-week period. Two of them were the parents of August Wehrman, who was Clarence ("Molly") Wehrman's father. "Molly" Wehrman was New Bremen's former Village Marshal.]

Address

241 N Main St
Delphos, OH
45833

Opening Hours

Thursday 09:00 - 12:00
Saturday 13:00 - 15:00
Sunday 13:00 - 15:00

Telephone

(419) 695-7737

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Comments

Does anyone recognize the background in this photo? Is that a barber pole in the background? Photo taken probably around 1930. Middle person is Elmer Trentman. To the left and right are sisters Lillian and Thelma Baumgarte.
Thank you for having the Capabilities Community Club from Lima. We appreciated the wonderful museum and kindness of the workers. A great time was had by all and the members are already talking about making another visit.
Welsh Thomas family enjoying the Canal Museum Christmas Tree exhibit... Merry Christmas
We had so much fun touring the Canal Museum with a couple of our out of town friends! Loved posing with my grandma's wedding dress and an antique stove donated by the parents of another friend with us! Such a Delphos treasure!
Saw this tonight
i was looking forward for canal days. there is hardly no food vendors. all the rides are almost on top of each other. optimist club has no bingo this year. except some one is having basket bingo which i don't care for. so who ever is in charge of canal days just saved me a whole bunch of money.so the only money is spent tonight was a corn dog and a Polish Sausage that my wife bought from a food vendor and two wrist bands for rides.
Are dinner tickets still available for the Boatman's Breakaway dinner next Sunday, March 11? When is the deadline?