History Day 2019

The Greenfield Historical Society hosted its 13th Annual History Day on October 5th. It was a day of various activities at the GHS buildings at the east end of town. Special exhibits were featured as well as craftspeople demonstrating their skills. This year History Day included the 5K Run-Walk, beginning at 9am; then the History Day activities in various buildings; and capped off with the annual Ghost Walk beginning at 3pm!

Gary Hochenberger shared his knowledge about Conestoga wagons at 10:30 and noon in the Red Barn. Susan Long presented two mini recitals in the Smith Tannery, at 11:00 AM and 12:30 PM. Several crafts, including cider making, were demonstrated at the Grain & Hay Building. Displays included a history of the Greenfield Fire Department, vintage clothing, Greenfield Sesquicentennial memorabilia and the Tom Adams model train display. Recently digitized videos of Dale Knauer cabarets were shown in the newspaper room of the Grain & Hay. Cub Scouts also performed a flag retirement ceremony at 2:00 PM.

Ghosts in the walk included John Coffey played by one of his descendants, Ron Coffey. Coffey brought his family to settle in Greenfield in 1800 along with several other families. He built an inn on the northeast corner of Main Street and Second Street doing a brisk business due to the traffic on the Old College Township Road that travelled through Greenfield. He was the first Justice of Peace for Greenfield and commanded the first militia in town, formed in 1807. He was a Presbyterian and was a Private during the War of 1812.

The second ghost was Zephaniah Bryan, played by Otis Wagner. There are two Zephaniah Bryans buried in our cemetery, father and son. The son died of wounds he received while serving in the Union army in the Battle of Atlanta in the Civil War.

John Cumback was portrayed by Phil Clyburn. John was a telegrapher in the early days of the telegraph. After John was buried here, his wife, Martha Buck, a school teacher, moved to Greensburg, Indiana, to be closer to Johnís family who had settled there.

Susan Long played Margaret Doyle, wife of Thomas Doyle. Margaret is buried near her sons, Samuel who died in infancy and William who died at the Battle of Cyntiana, Kentucky, during the Civil War. Several of Margaretís descendants continued to live the Greenfield area and have interesting stories for Margaret to share.

The last ghost was John Milton Dwyer who was portrayed by Danny Long. John was a farmer in Paint Township and is buried with his first and second wives in the Old Burying Ground. John was married three times and fathered thirteen children. His grandfather fought in the American Revolution.

It was quite a busy day and the weather was perfect. Below are some pictures highlighting the activities.

Susan Long portrayed Margaret Doyle.

Danny Long portrayed John Milton Dwyer.

Otis Wagner portrayed Zephaniah Bryan.

Ron Coffey portrayed John Coffey.

Phil Clyburn portrayed John Cumback.

The Greenfield Historical Society
PO Box 266
Greenfield, Ohio 45123