Fostoria Museum and Historical Society

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History of Fostoria

In 1958 when the city began to realize that too many services were concentrated in the City Hall at 121 - 123 West North Street in Fostoria. The Fire, Police, Water, and Health Departments plus the Municipal Court were all in the City Hall. All of the city offices were also located there; the mayor, Service Director, the City Solicitor, and more.

A new city Municipal Building was completed in 1959 at 213 South Main Street. All City Departments, except the Fire Department were moved to the new building. An addition was constructed in 1964 to accommodate a Jail for the Police Department.

The Fire Department moved to the new building on the site of old Whittier grade school on Crocker Street in 1974.

The Fostoria Area Historical Society was incorporated as a nonprofit (501 C3) organization recorded by the Secretary of State on September 10, 1973.

The Fostoria Area Historical Society Museum leased the old City Hall at 121 - 123 West North Street from the Fostoria City Council. The building was vacant and had previously been used as a repository for Civil Defense and Hospital Rescue Equipment during the Cold War.

There had been considerable discussion by members who felt that the old Whittier School building would have been a good Museum for the Historical Society. Some very dedicated volunteers salvaged school desks, furniture, school clocks, correctional devices (paddles), and approximately 100 blackboard slates from the walls for the school building. The Historical Society proudly displays seven of these blackboards and desks in a class room that has been reproduced at the Museum.

Many volunteers worked diligently on the first floor of the new home of the Fostoria Area Historical Society Museum soon after the move in 1974. By the time the United States Bicentennial was celebrated in 1976, the Historical Society had a nice display of artifacts on exhibit.

One of the items that the Historical Society is especially proud of is a 1941 Seagraves Ladder Pumper Fire Truck which has been left by the Fostoria Fire Department when they moved to their new facility.

The old City Hall building was in need of repairs which included a new roof. With revenue sharing money and through donations by anonymous donors, the Historical Society was able to replace the roof.

Located on the second floor of the Museum, in the large front room, contains furniture and memorabilia of Charles "Calico Charlie" Foster. His father, Charles Foster Sr., helped to bring the communities of Rome and Risdon together in 1854 forming the city of Fostoria.