Museum to hold pie contest, history re-enactment and annual cemetery walk

Published 5:00 am Sunday, June 23, 2024

By Terry L. Hapney, Jr.
The Ironton Tribune

The 2024 season of the Lawrence County Historical Society and Museum is well underway with rotating exhibits and special events scheduled this summer and into the fall.
Sue Lunsford is a former board member and volunteer for the Historical Society; Alicia Fraley serves as secretary for the organization. Both women discussed how volunteers create new exhibits and plan “exciting” events designed to keep the history of Ironton and Lawrence County alive.
The annual Pie Social and Contest event is scheduled for 2 p.m. on July 13. Fraley said that entails everyone getting together for pie—a tradition of about 20 years now.
“We have judges,” Fraley said.
“Who bakes the best pie?” Lunsford asked.
There are two categories—amateur and business.
“That way we can get everyone involved,” Fraley said. “Then, after the judging everyone stays and eats some pie.”
Winners get a plaque to commemorate their award-winning pies. On average, there are between 20 and 25 pies entered—of all different types.
Local judges decide the best pies out of all entries.
“Judge Andy Ballard has done it before,” Fraley said.
“The mayor,” Lunsford said. “The sheriff.”
“Two mayors,” Fraley said. “A home ec. teacher.”
“She knew her stuff,” Lunsford said. “It’s just a good time.”
There is no entry fee. The event is designed to bring everyone together “to have fun.”
“So, they can come into the Museum, check it out and see what it’s all about,” Lunsford said. “Maybe they will become a member.”
Next to the Museum from 1-4 p.m. on August 17 is the French and Indian War Living History Re-Enactment.
“This is a new event,” Fraley said.
The annual Woodland Cemetery Historic Walk is scheduled for 5 p.m. on September 28, at 824 Lorain St. In Ironton.
“It has been going on since the 1990s,” Fraley said.
The event began in one “tiny section of the cemetery,” Lunsford said.
Fraley said Historical society members Naomi Deer and Debbie Rogers started it.
“It became this huge event,” she said. “Last year we sold out in programs before it started. We sold out within 15 minutes. We hope to have more programs this year.”
The plan is to add new characters to it.
“We’ll have the ones everyone loves—the lady on the stairs, Nannie Kelley, Col. Lambert,” Fraley said.
People volunteer to portray these actual, historical people from Lawrence County.
“They stand by their grave marker to portray the person,” Lunsford said. “They dress in the clothes from that period. They tell their life story just like it was them, speaking in first person.”
Lunsford said there were between 30 and 35 people portraying characters last year. Fraley said it is a “great opportunity” for young people to learn how this area was built.
“They see these grand houses over here in downtown, but they don’t know these were the ironmaster houses, the doctors’ houses—people who were very important in growing our county,” Fraley said.
Fraley and Lunsford said their “hope” is to have more people visit the museum and increase the number of people who are actively involved with it. The Museum is located at 506 S. Sixth St. in Ironton.
It is open from 1-4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
For more information, contact Fraley at 740-534-3577 or via

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