XENIA — Summer visitors to the Carriage House Museum in Xenia will be able to take a step back in time to learn about the grocery stores of days past as well as the unique artifacts of communities throughout the county through two new exhibits. The museum and exhibits are maintained by the Greene County Ohio Historical Society.
“Mom and pop” grocery stores were once a staple of the local shopping scene. According to Catherine Wilson, executive director of the county’s historical society, 35 such grocery stores existed in Xenia alone.
One of the new exhibits will show artifacts, photographs and news articles from and about these stores from the 1890s up through the 1970s. The exhibit will also compare today’s grocery prices with prices from past eras.
“We’re trying to essentially celebrate the small business,” Wilson said. “I like to get people thinking about what today’s life would be like if they still had the mom and pop groceries.”
The second new exhibit will feature 100 artifacts from the towns and communities of Greene County. Wilson said the society is encouraging the historical societies from around the county to send in “something that just … screams their community.”
“We’re trying to get them from everyplace,” she said.
According to Wilson, the inspiration for this exhibit came from a similar Smithsonian exhibit featuring 1,000 artifacts.
“We toned it down to 100 for Greene County,” Wilson said, laughing. “I’m sure I could pull out 1,000 artifacts, but we don’t have the room to display 1,000.”
The grocery store exhibit is currently available for viewing, and the “100 items” exhibit will open June 7.
The historical society’s Carriage House Museum building is located at 74 West Church Street in Xenia and is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and during the summer from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.
For more information on these exhibits, contact the Greene County Historical Society at 937-372-4606 or by email at email@example.com.