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Grand opening set for history museum

This restored mural hanging in the Farmington Library was created in 1981 by by artist Michael Chomyk as a memorial to Wit Ledbetter. The mural depicts a number of historical references to the city of Farmington that will be part of an exhibit of 16 artifacts in the new Farmington Museum holding its grand opening 1-4 p.m. Jan. 19.

The grand opening of the Farmington History Museum will take place from 1 to 4 p.m. Jan. 19.

The museum is located at the north end of the Farmington Public Library, 101 N A St., where it shares space with the genealogy room.

The public is invited to attend the opening that will feature an exhibit of artifacts representing the 16 historic events depicted on the 20 by 22-foot History of Farmington Mural, which is prominently displayed on the north wall of the library.

The mural was presented to the city of Farmington in 1981 by Anne Ledbetter as a memorial to her late husband Wit, a former city mayor, long-time publisher of the Farmington Press and dedicated member of the library board. The mural, painted by area artist Michael Choryk of Ironton, was placed in the then newly-opened library on West First Street. When the present much expanded library was built on the corner of West Liberty and A streets, the mural also made the move and was again hung as a testimony to Farmington’s proud past.

The many historic items that will be on display pertaining to events portrayed in the mural, have been donated or loaned to the museum for this event. Included will be memorabilia from the Carleton College, old Plank Road, Lead Mines, State Hospital, the community’s rural beginnings and the train that ran between the Farmington and Delassus depots.

There will also be an opportunity for visitors to order a souvenir section of the old trolley railroad tracks that were removed last year from North Street. Each section is approximately a foot in length and bears a small engraved plaque authenticating its origins. The cost for each “slice-of-history” is $25, with the proceeds going to support the museum’s work.

The opening is the first opportunity for the public to see the museum in its dedicated and secure space. Plans are for the museum to be open to visitors on Friday and Saturday afternoons. There is no admission charge to attend the grand opening. Guides will be on hand to answer questions during the event and light refreshments will be served.

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