Cauli Le Chat

Cauli Le Chat
Cauli Le Chat, MPL Roving Reporter

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Remembering My Hometown

Lots of folks visit my Library, and some of them are interested in the history of my hometown.  You'd think they'd primarily be interested in moi, but I can understand the psychological drive to know your roots.

The MPL Indiana Room (I call it my Roving Reporter Room) has loads of local and state historical and genealogical information.  We used to have a local historian, but I fired him because he forgot my special appreciation day last month.  (I see him hanging around the place even still.  Probably panhandling, I'd wager.)  So it once again falls upon my feline shoulders to make with the historical banter.

There is no better source for hometown history than the memories of those who have lived here most or all of their lives.  Oral histories are rich with details that you simply won't find in most printed sources. Thankfully, there is a DVD in our collection called Memories of Mooresville (2011), produced by Andrew Marine Video Productions.  It is a superbly-crafted visual record of interviews (in 2008) with several longtime Mooresville (and Morgan County) residents, most of whom have unfortunately passed over since filming.  The speakers were:
Their passing emphasizes the pricelessness of their memories, and we are truly fortunate to have their hometown experiences documented.  If I recollect correctly, the project was the brainchild of Susan Haynes of the Mooresville Consolidated School Corporation.  (Mrs. Hine was Susan's grandmother.)  The video was recorded in Mooresville High School's library by  MHS teacher Andrew Marine and his crew.  Julie Kyle-Lee, curator of Mooresville's Academy School Museum, was an integral participant who helped bring the project to fruition.  (I'm undoubtedly forgetting other important people; sorry about that.)

The Panel had fond memories of Mooresville's
Old Settlers Annual Picnic

The panel discussed a wide range of topics, including local citizens, businesses and hang-outs, leisure activities, schools, technologies, transportation changes, and other recollections from their near-century of living experiences.  If you watch the video, you will learn much about Mooresville history during the 20th century.  Some secrets were shared, and many colorful anecdotes will leave you laughing.  It is an amazing array of facts presented by those who knew what happened, because they were there to experience it first-hand.

If you are interested in the history of Mooresville (and the surrounding area in northern Morgan County), then you should definitely watch this DVD.  Better yet, purchase your own copy at the Academy of Hoosier Heritage.  It's a short walk down Monroe Street from my Library to the Academy Building (built in 1861).  I think the DVD price is $10, but you'd better check that for yourselves to be sure.  I'm a cat--numbers aren't my thing.  That's something my minions are supposed to remember.

Of course, my Library has the DVD (three copies available to check-out, if you have an Evergreen Indiana library card).  It is a pleasure to share these wonderful glimpses from the past of the place I call home.

Your Roving Reporter On The Go,

Cauli Le Chat

P.S.  My Library still offers a self-guided walking tour (with audio tour guide on CD) of historic downtown Mooresville, Indiana.  Our promo trailer explains.

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