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It continues to come down...

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Clarrissa posted 4/17/2013 19:36 PM

My chilhood home, that is.

I saw a picture in todays paper that showed (mostly) empty space where the older boys had their dormitories. I had to orient myself to the picture before I realized which buildings had come down. One of them was the one my H had been in while he was there. I don't know if *all* of the boys' dorms are gone (there were 5) because the picture didn't cover the entire area but I'm reasonably sure none are left. I'm also reasonably sure the older girls' dormitories (5 of those as well) are either also gone or will be soon. They've already demolished two of the dorms I lived in (one was the third oldest building on the campus). They've dismantled the one iconic structure of the place (the Civil War cannons that were at the entrance), the barn, the hospital and the bandshell. They've converted the entire gym, vocational school snd the administration building into offices. And it was a shame about the administration building since the second and third floors were composed of apartments. Could have made a bundle renting them out.

Anyway, next on the demolition list is the power plant. Put outva lot of power while I was there. Enough to heat at least 18 buildings on 144 acres. Itvwas steam heat from a coal-fired furnace which also powered the whistlebthat every student and employee heard 7 to 8 times a day, one of which told downtown Xenia it was the end of the business day.

Anyway, I expect there won't be much of anything left of the old place in a couple years.

Threnody posted 4/17/2013 19:49 PM

Clarissa, is it the place I'm thinking of in X? If so, I'm sad to hear this. I played sports against their teams and fell in love with the campus. My folks live in that town now and I still drive up through there when I visit.

jrc1963 posted 4/17/2013 20:19 PM

Clarrissa...

While I don't have personal experience with this... FWSO does. I've watched him grieve for the loss of the "home" he grew up in.

They tore most of it down before he found out it was happening.

(((Clarrissa))) Sorry for your loss

Clarrissa posted 4/17/2013 20:51 PM

Thren, if you're thinking of the place just south of town on Rt. 68 then you're thinking of the right place.

I told H about the demolition and we got to reminiscing about the place, especially the whistle - a full throated steam whistle that you could hear for literally miles. It blew forvthe very last time about 10 years ago and a friend of mine said that at noon that day downtown Xenia just *stopped* while that final two minute blast sounded (it normally went for 30 seconds). I think the entire town realized it was the end of an era. A lot of people had grown up with the sound of that whistle. You could set your watch by it if you felt the need for one. Like I said, when it blew at 5:00, businesses downtown knew it was time to close up shop and go home.

jrc, to be honest, I'm a bit ambiguous about the demolition. Yes, I grew up there but it's also where my rather unique FOO issues originated or became really entrenched. I think it's a shame what's being done to it because it was a truly historical place. The first (and for a time the *only*) state run orphanage/childrens home. Now, 126 years of history is slowly disappearing in the name of "progress" but I think there may be one building that's safe from the bulldozer - the one the campus was built around. It was called the House on Poverty Knoll back in the 1840s and was the superintendant's house during my residence. It was the original orphanage.

Clarrissa posted 4/29/2013 16:52 PM

Just a little update. Found out today (just a little bit ago actually) that the second oldest building (the armory) is almost completely demolished. My sister posted a picture of it on her FB page.

I got to thinking earlier today that chances are they'll also take down the chaprl at some point. And, to me, that brings up an interesting legal question: who would have the authority to approve the exhumations of the diphtheria victims in the cemetary? No sense in trying to locate family - they *were* otphans - and neither Xenia or Greene County had jurisdiction during the majority of the of its operation. I don't know who has jurisdiction now.

Of course, cynic that I am, I can see it just paved over once the headstones are removed. The organization can always claim ignorance or pussy foot around and claim the victims were buried in Xenia. (Yeah right. Like they'd be allowed to break quarantine...). Part of md would just love to be able to notify the paper and TV ststions and say "Did you know there are people buried under that building/parking lot? Diphtheria victims from the 1880s." But that's just me...

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