Thursday, June 23, 2011

Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial

The celebration of the Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial took place from June 15 to June 23, 1968. It was an observance of the 150th anniversary of the founding of the city of Sandusky in 1818. The official seal for the Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial, created by Frank Smith, Art Supervisor of Sandusky City Schools, featured an image of the Walk-in-the-Water, the first steamboat on Lake Erie. The festivities were kicked off on Saturday, June 15 at Washington Park. The Queen’s Coronation Ball was held at Cedar Point, and a square dance for the general public took place at the Sandusky Plaza during the evening hours. Mrs. Francine Sengstock was selected as Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial Queen.

Each day of the Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial featured a theme. The themes were: Dedication Day, Religious Heritage Day, Commerce & Industry Day, Agricultural Day, Ladies Day, Youth Day, Military Armed Forces Day, and Pioneer & Senior Citizens Day. On Vacationland Day, which was Thursday, June 20, special reduced admission prices were offered for Cedar Point, the Blue Hole, and Lagoon Deer Park. During the evenings of June 18-22, a production entitled Where Have We Been – Where Are We Going was held at Strobel Field. The A. Rogers Production was written, produced, and staged by B. Louis Gregory. Bill E. Cline was the managing director, with Donna Cline serving as associate director.

The Sesquicentennial Parade took place on Saturday, June 22, going from Strobel Field to downtown Sandusky, and on to Battery Park. George S. Schiller, who served as Grand Marshall is pictured below with Connie Hartlaub.

Many floats, bands, horses, and decorated vehicles participated in the parade.

In the weeks leading up to the Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial, several men gave up shaving and grew beards. The men called themselves the Brothers of the Brush and they had a ceremonial burial of Ray Zor. (Get it?)

Visit the Sandusky Library to read about the Sandusky Area Sesquicentennial in Portraits from the Past, a souvenir booklet that sold for $1.75 in 1968. The Sandusky Library Archives Research Center also owns a bound copy of the special Sesquicentennial edition of the Sandusky Register from June of 1968. Ask at the Reference Services desk if you would like to view these items.


Ed Daniel said...

My brother John was one of the "Brothers of the Brush" during the Sesquisentenial. He was blond-headed but grew a beautiful red beard. Ed Daniel

cate said...

My dad also grew the only beard I ever saw on him for the Sesquicentennial. My mother made all of us period clothes, us girls had prairie dresses with bonnets (little house on the prairie style!)Everybody was really into the celebration.

Gary ohlemacher said...

Our family was sitting about two rows in front of the woman that was killed as a result of the explosion. I can't find any record of that event. Another woman walked by us with a chunk of her ear cut off. Where can I find out details about this? I was 13 at the time.

Sandusky Library Archives Research Center said...

There are newspaper accounts of the explosion at the sesquicentennial event, available on microfilm at the library. I don't know of any other accounts.