Many events to celebrate bicentennial

Published 10:07 am Tuesday, March 8, 2016

We as the Chamber of Commerce appreciate your write-up about Lawrence County’s bicentennial, and we completely agree.

Our county’s rich history is a legacy that is definitely worthy of remembering and celebrating. Our county was once one of the leading sources of the world’s iron supply, contributing to building the growing world’s infrastructure. It was the home of the only female Iron Master in history, and one of the wealthiest women in the world.

Our county sent its sons to serve in the Mexican-American War, the Union Army of the Civil War, and every major war since then, including the two Great Wars. Our county was instrumental in the Underground Railroad, and if you look in the right places you can still find the hidden nooks and passages in some of the older homes that were used to hide fleeing slaves on their trek north.

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The farming legacy of the area is important and exciting too, with the Rome Apple, named for its origin in Rome Township, as one of the 15 most popular apple varieties in the U.S.

So with this rich history to celebrate, the Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to picking up the cause of giving our 200-year legacy the attention it deserves. We want to respond to your concerns with reassurance that this important task is in good hands.

We at the chamber have already established coordination with many of the local groups across the county, so that the celebration for the county is by the county.

We are planning involvement in Ironton’s Memorial Day Parade (the nation’s longest consecutively running Memorial Day parade, by the way), we will host a bicentennial day at the Lawrence County Fair with special entertainment, we will get the children in Lawrence County’s schools involved in projects to display their work researching the history of the county, because not passing our rich legacy to the next generation would be a true tragedy.

We will also host a large festival-style celebration on Labor Day weekend to bring together Lawrence County’s artisans, artists, performers, and food vendors to show the rich culture we have available here in the county. And there will be a ceremony at the county seat on the actual date of the Bicentennial, Dec. 20, to commemorate the anniversary.

There are also a few other smaller events being put together across the county, and we are very excited with the plans and involvement that has already been committed, and we’re getting more and more people involved in this great cause every day. Our ask of the county is for their enthusiasm, ideas and support in the various celebrations that we are putting together. The county can only be appropriately celebrated if the whole county is involved and excited with that celebration.

Please contact the Chamber of Commerce, Shirley Dyer, or Casey Compston if you would like to get involved in this great cause of celebrating our rich heritage and looking forward to the next 200 years of our great Lawrence County. The chamber can be reached by phone at 740-377-4550 or by email at


M. Casey Compston

Chair of the Chamber’s Bicentennial Committee