Piece of county history sent to governor#8217;s mansion

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 14, 2006

UPPER TOWNSHIP — A piece of Lawrence County’s history will become a fixture at the governor’s residence in Columbus.

Lawrence County Commission is sending a stone from the old LaGrange Furnace on Porter Gap Road to Columbus for inclusion in a new walkway in the Heritage Gardens on the mansion grounds. The County Commissioners Association of Ohio, which is spearheading the creation of the walkway along with governor’s residence staff, has asked for a representation from each of the state’s 88 counties. Area officials agreed that a nod to the area’s pig iron industry was a logical choice for Lawrence County’s offering.

“I thought that probably would be the best representation of Lawrence County,” Lawrence County Commission Administrator Kathy Fraley said.

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The rock was donated by the Patrick Holmes family, which now owns the furnace and the grounds around it. It was one of 19 built by Hurd, Gould and Company of Hopewell, Pennsylvania.

The stone is engraved with the words “Lawrence County LaGrange Furnace built 1836.”

Local officials have sent a short explanation the stone’s origins and why it was important to the county.

The Ohio Heritage Garden at the Governor’s Residence is a series of small gardens designed to represent the major ecosystems of the state and to show the diversity and special qualities of each region. Plants from prairies and bogs, the Alleghany plateau and Appalachian hills, woodlands and water, and sand dunes are meant to tell the history of the state, according to information from the governor’s residence Web site.