Wood County Historical Center & Museum
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WWI Exhibit opens February 1

Take a journey back in time, 100 years ago in Wood County, Ohio, with a new exhibit: Over There! Send Word: The Wood County Boys are Coming! World War I, 1914-1918

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Wood County Infirmary & Social Welfare

Social Welfare in Wood County

This introduction to our County Infirmary ties this institution to social welfare in Wood County from 1869-1971. The Infirmary was one aspect of relief, and this exhibit examines other relief given and the role of the Ohio Board of Charities.

"A Clean Bill of Health: Societal Re4sponse to Communicable Disease" exhibit

inside the Pestilence House

This building served as living quarters for men with communicable diseases such as scarlet fever and influenza, keeping them separated from other Infirmary residents. It was remodeled in 2012 with structural improvements. Inside, visitors will see an Iron Lung and other items reminiscent of early medical history.

“A Clean Bill Of Health: Societal Response To Communicable Disease” defines types of diseases that have affected people all over the globe and illustrates a number of social programs that grew as a result including sanitary reform, urban planning, bath culture, nursing, pharmaceuticals, education, and public health organizations.


Lunatic Asylum at the Wood County Historical Center & Museum


CHASING THE WHITE RABBIT: An Historical Look at American Mental Illness
inside the Lunatic Asylum

The Lunatic Asylum, on the site of the former County Infirmary, once was a haven for the mentally ill. Today, a poignant exhibit outlines the development of mental health practices and social stigmas. To compliment this exhibit and structure, the Wood County Historical Society works closely with local mental health agencies and academics to provide education and outreach.


Ice House


The original Infirmary Ice House, built of materials from the old county jail, still stands on the site, but now it keeps cool an exhibit about its history. Before the days of electric refrigeration, the Ice House served as a receptacle for ice blocks harvested from the nearby ponds, which preserved the meat and canned goods used to feed the Infirmary residents.

If you would like to borrow a traveling exhibit, please contact the Museum at 419.352.0967

Between Fences Smithsonian Exhibit
Traveling Exhibit


Built as a companion piece to the Smithsonian's Between Fences, our local exhibit looks at fences and boundaries, both physical and figurative, at the Wood County Infirmary. In the forefront is the Brandeberry Wall that surrounds the grounds still today, as well as the perceived fences between Infirmary residents and the community.

This exhibit was developed as a partner to BETWEEN FENCES from Museum on Main Street, a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and the Federation of State Humanities Councils. Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress.

Living History
Traveling Exhibit


Which Bowling Green tailor provided lumber to the city’s booming glass industry and downtown businesses? Which community-minded women were instrumental in the development of Bowling Green’s first Library and Hospital? Why would a professor eat makeshift tomato soup from ketchup and hot water, and then leave his entire estate to the University to benefit future students? These four people, among 17 others, left their mark on the City of Bowling Green, and are now remembered in the Oak Grove Cemetery Living History Exhibit.

This exhibit was done as a partnership between the Wood County Genealogical Society and the Wood County Historical Society.The Oak Grove Cemetery Book, published by the Genealogical Society, is now available.

Also see Wood County Living History Day in August at Oak Grove Cemetery

Wood County Fair
Traveling Exhibit

The first Wood County Fair was held in 1851 in a grove of trees on Wooster Street (near the present City Building), but has grown into a week-long tradition of music, animals, exhibits, rides, and food. This exhibit traces the history of the many Wood County Fairs, including its demise in 1927 and its revival in the 1950s.

This exhibit was done as a partnership between the Wood County Genealogical Society and the Wood County Historical Society.

Wood Co Children's Home
Traveling Exhibit

From dependent to dependable, the Wood County Children's Home served youth in need from 1908 to 1959. The original home, as well as the stately institution, both which are still visible in Bowling Green today, are a testament to the County's duty to social welfare. Watched over for many years by superintendent Nellie Repass, the children that resided in the home share their stories. Whether unruly or unfortunate, the Children's Home helped many families stay strong.

This exhibit was done as a partnership between the Wood County Genealogical Society and the Wood County Historical Society.

Residents Remembered
Traveling Exhibit

Nine Infirmary residents are showcased in this exhibit which debuted at the 2004 Wood County Fair. A joint effort of the Wood County Historical Society and the Wood County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society, each panel explains the myriad of reasons that would necessitate people to become an Infirmary resident. Disabilities, the Depression, and a series of misfortunes may have brought them here, but you may be surprised at the dynamics that followed.

This exhibit was done as a partnership between the Wood County Genealogical Society and the Wood County Historical Society.

Traveling Exhibit

The foods of Northwest Ohio may not seem particularly interesting at first, but a closer look reveals a deep-rooted history of German ancestry, Mexican influence, and pioneer struggles. This exhibit was funded by a Partnership for Community Action grant as a dual project between the Wood County Historical Society and the foodways studies of Dr. Lucy Long, department of American Culture Studies at Bowling Green State University.
Smithsonian KEY INGREDIENTS: AMERICA BY FOOD exhibit that launched our Northwest Ohio Foodways projects.

More about Ohio Foodways and the Center for Food and Culture.

Grange Exhibit
Traveling Exhibit

Formally known as the PATRONS OF HUSBANDRY, the Grange was founded by Minnesota farmer Oliver Hudson Kelley in 1867. Organized as a "farm-friendly fraternity," the Grange offered social and community rewards to benefit rural life. Today, the Grange is still active across the United States, with 33 Granges in Wood County, Ohio. Under the direction of Floyd LeGalley, Ralph Seiler, and Ralph Brandeberry, the Grange Building at the Wood County Fairgrounds still honors agricultural pride in Northwest Ohio.

This exhibit was done as a partnership between the Wood County Genealogical Society and the Wood County Historical Society.

Century Farms and Wood County Barns exhibit
Traveling Exhibit

This exhibit showcases century farms in Wood County - properties that have remained in one family for over 100 years. Assistance provided by the Ohio Department of Agriculture. Photos, paintings, drawings, and memorabilia of Wood County barns brought a personal touch to this landmark accomplishment.

This exhibit was done as a partnership between the Wood County Genealogical Society and the Wood County Historical Society.

Our OhioMore about Century Farms from Our Ohio and the the Ohio Farm Bureau

Civil War 150
Traveling Exhibit

A poignant look at Wood County's men and their roles serving our county and country in the Civil War.

Related Links:

• Civil War Cemeteries & Monuments in Wood County, Ohio




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