Lakewood Historical Museum Receives Local Artifacts | News, Sports, Jobs

The Lakewood Historical Museum contains artifacts from the village benefactors. Among them are the Packards of the Packard Automobile Company. Photo of PJ by William Mohan

LAKEWOOD – The Lakewood Museum will have more to show when its operating season begins in July.

Initially, the museum house was the attic of Lakewood Village Hall on Summit Avenue. Another move was made to the building’s ground floor and conference room before the Lakewood Police Department allowed them to use their current basement location. Clearance was given by Lakewood Mayor Anthony Caprino to use the remainder of the basement space. The organization is the result of the Lakewood Historical Committee to house a home for documents and material goods that date their heritage to the village of Lakewood.

“We created the museum in October 2011” said historian Susan Lane. “We didn’t have a museum. We had nothing. We had old historians, but we had nowhere to go.

During the last six years of operation, the LHC has received numerous photographs of the entire village, including the city center, residential areas and the lakeside.

“We are 90 to 95% pictorial”, Lane said. “We are receiving more donated tangible assets.”

Artifacts from old local businesses are on display at the Lakewood Historical Museum. Seen here the first film ever premiered at the former PJ Summit Theater photo by William Mohan

Two recent elements relate to the history of sport in the village. Robert and Judy Petroline donated two baseballs used by the Busti Rangers in the late 1970s to the Lakewood Historical Museum Committee. The Rangers were a baseball team made up of 9 and 10 year old boys. Petroline was a teacher at Jefferson Middle School in Jamestown and coached the team in 1977 and 1979. Balloons contain the last names of team members and the Petrolines were able to add first names as well. A plaque with the names of each respective player will be displayed next to the baseballs. When the museum reopens for its summer operating season, all 31 members will visit and see the balls and their names.

Despite all the efforts of the Petrolines, only two members of the team remain missing in the plague. It is hoped that in the months leading up to the event, they can be learned and added.

“They remembered everyone except this one so hopefully when the kids come they say it’s Bud, Frank or Bud whatever.” said Roger Gilbert, committee member.

The objects currently on display also relate to former local businesses and residents of the village. One of the most important exhibits is that of the Packard Motor Company and in particular one of the main founders who called Lakewood his summer home. With his wife Elizabeth, James Packard had a summer residence in the village. The couple also became one of the main benefactors of the village and maintained a wide range of boats and cars in the village. Most of the village also grew thanks to the wealth and influence of the Packards. While Mr. Packard passed away in 1928, Ms. Packard remained in the community and was socially active in and around Lakewood and Jamestown.

To date, various buildings constructed with Packard resources can be found. In addition, the Packard heritage is also on display in the Lakewood Fire Department on Chautauqua Avenue. In 1915, Mr. Packard donated a corner of an orchard he owned and $ 15,000 to the Beechwood Fire Bucket Service. The goal was to build a new state-of-the-art fire station. The result was the new Lakewood Hose Company. Along with the construction of the new station, Packard donated a 1915 Hallock Machine Company Ford chemical fire truck, the first motorized firefighting equipment in Chautauqua County. The engine remained in service until 1946.

The committee also compiled a walking tour map using the 14 historical markers currently in the village. The Lakeview House, Sterlingworth Hotel, Lakewood Country Club, Kent First and Second Houses, Packard Mansion, and WWII Memorial markers are all located on Terrace Ave in Richard Hartley Park. The markers for Paul Sorg Mansion or Green Farm, Aull Cottage, New Holbrook Hotel, WWII Memorial (in the American Legion), and Erie Railroad station are all located on Chautauqua Avenue.

Two additional markers representing different views of Chautauqua Avenue from the north and south are also found on the street. A marker for the Lakewood Village Hall is located at the museum on Owana Way. A marker for Lakewood Schools is located on East Summit Avenue. In the southern part of the village, there are also markers for the Lac Chautauqua breeding farm and the Bemus house on East Fairmount Avenue.

To learn more about the Lakewood Historical Museum, visit lakewoodny.com or call Susan Lane at 969-5762. The Lakewood Historical Museum is located at 20 W. Summit St. in Lakewood.

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Patrick F. Williams

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