Clock Tower

Out of the Clock Tower



Hello and welcome to the Greene County Archives' blog, "Out of the Clock Tower".  Please join us as we share information on archival issues, news, special events, and highlights from our collection.

Before the archives program began in Greene County in 1996, permanent records were stored in every conceivable space, in basements, garages, and closets. Usually they were in boxes of various shapes and sizes, although seldom adequately labeled, but occasionally they were just in loose piles of books and papers. Most notable were the old records stuffed into the clock tower of the County Courthouse, where they shared their home with pigeon droppings.

Now, there is a clean, environmentally controlled, well appointed location for the county archives, where our historical records are housed in standard sized boxes on steel shelves. We have taken note of their journey in the name for our blog.

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Mar 13

A New Car for the Sheriff

Posted on March 13, 2020 at 9:16 AM by Melissa Dalton

Do you remember your first car? Some people have fond, or not so fond, memories of their first vehicle. Perhaps it had a stick shift that you had to learn or the car did/did not have any air conditioning. In 1931, the Greene County Sheriff was looking to purchase a new patrol car (See Fig. 1).

Fig. 1 Commissioners Journal Vol. 29 Pg. 361 (JPG)
Fig. 1 Greene County Commissioners Journal, Volume 29, Pg. 361 (Greene County Archives)

In 1899, the first police car was introduced in Akron, Ohio. It was a wagon that was equipped with an electric motor. By the 1920s, a few city police departments were experimenting with installing radios in the back of a Ford Model T. By having a patrol car, the Greene County Sheriff or Deputy could cover an area that would have previously needed several officers or was an area not patrolled as often.

The Greene County Commissioners were keen on trading in the Sheriff’s 1928 Studebaker for something new. The models that were evaluated included Chevrolet, Ford, Pontiac, Studebaker, Oakland, Essex, Hudson, Willys, Plymouth, Oldsmobile, and Chrysler Sedans (See Figs. 2, 3, 4, and 5). Check out the local companies that were selling these automobiles.

Fig. 2 Commissioners Journal Vol. 29 Pg. 362 (JPG)
Fig. 2 Greene County Commissioners Journal, Volume 29, Pg. 362 (Greene County Archives)

Fig. 3 Commissioners Journal Vol. 39 Pg. 363 (JPG)
Fig. 3 Greene County Commissioners Journal, Volume 29, Pg. 363 (Greene County Archives)

Fig. 4 Ford Sedan 1931 (JPG)
Fig. 4 1931 Ford Model A Standard Fordor Sedan (courtesy of Lglswe via Wikimedia Commons)

Fig. 5 Willys_Six_97_4-Door_Sedan_1931 (JPG)
Fig. 5 1931 Willys Six 97 4-Door Sedan (courtesy of Lars-Goran Lindgren Sweden via Wikimedia Commons)

Prior to and during World War I, Willys-Overland Motors was the second largest automobile producer in the United States. However, by the economic depression, several Willys' brands began to be discontinued. During World War II, Willys-Overland Motors designed and produced military Jeeps.

Did you notice that the last car listed, a new Chrysler “6” 4-Door Sedan, included a siren, a shatterproof windshield, a heater, and a Loraine driving lamp at no extra cost? The County Commissioners decided to purchase the Chrysler at a price of $670, which would be an equivalent today as $11,426 (See Fig. 6).

Fig. 6 Chrysler_6-62_4-Door_Sedan_1931 (JPG)

Fig. 6 1931 Chrysler 6 4-Door Sedan (Courtesy of Lars-Goran Lindgren Sweden via Wikimedia Commons)

During the 1930s, this new Chrysler Sedan purchased from Ankeney Motor Sales, certainly helped the County Sheriff complete his duties.

Until Next Time!

Sources:
Greene County Archives
Wikimedia Commons

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