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Annual Dinner to be held November 13th

The Annual Dinner Meeting of the Jay County Historical Society will be held in the Fellowship Hall of Asbury United Methodist Church at 6:30 PM on Tuesday, November 13th.  The cost of the meal is $10.  Reservations and the $10 payment must be received at the museum by 4 PM on Thursday, November 8th.  No meal reservations will be accepted after that time.

The menu for the dinner will be ham loaf, cheesy potatoes, green beans, cole slaw, roll, pumpkin dessert, iced tea, coffee, and water.  The meal will be served by the Joy Circle of the church.

A short business meeting will be held, with election of members of the Board of Directors.

The program for the evening will be given by Charles “Chuck” Bragg, a 1956 Portland High School graduate.  His presentation will include several stories about our Colonial Founding Families.  Chuck will relate the story of a book about General Shanks.  He will also include historical information about his mother and taking him to a celebration in Chicago on November 19, 1950.

Going to State!

The Indiana State Historical Society decorated a Christmas tree with ornaments from various counties in Indiana.  It is their goal to have all 92 counties represented on the tree.  Thanks to local artist Steve McClung, Jay County will have an ornament of the tree this December.  The ornament is a sketch of an Interurban Car like the ones that once came into Portland,  The sketch is in a small gray, wooden frame.

Connect to JCHS

The Jay County Historical Society website,, is currently being revised, thanks to a grant from the Portland, Foundation.  Keep watching for changes being made by Craig Frazee and his staff at Dynamic Business Solutions.

Are you a Facebook user?  Like our page, “Jay County Historical Society,” and you will continue to see our posts.  We try to keep you posted about Open House events, Program Meetings, etc.  There are also several photos of the museum displays.

Shirts for Sale!!!

 Cool Cayenne Authentic Printed Shirt Company, located in Muncie, recently closed a second store which they had operated in Portland.  The Portland store had produced a variety of shirts and caps for the eight former Jay County high schools.  While in business, they had given a percentage of their sale of these shirts to JCHS.  Upon closing, they donated their extra school shirts to JCHS to sell.

Shirts are available at bargain prices for each school on a limited basis.  If interested, contact the museum to see if we have your school, size, and shirt type.  When these are gone, they are gone!  The items are priced as follows:


                                                                        T-Shirts  (short)………$5

T-Shirts (short sleeve): Redkey-1 medium; Pennville-1 small, 1 XL; Poling-1 medium, 1 large; Jay County Hospital-1 XL.

T-Shirts (long sleeve): Pennville-1 small, 1 medium

Sweatsirts: Redkey-one 2X; Dunkirk-1 medium; Poling-1 medium; Jay County Hospital-4 small.

Questions about the availability of the items above will only be answered by phone, 726-7168 or a visit to the museum.  

 Look What’s New!

Items are continuously coming into the museum.  Although not all can be put on display immediately, we will try to highlight some which are.

Four members of the Indiana World Organization of China Painters with Jay County ties currently have some of their work on temporary load for a display at the museum.  This display is located in the cases in the kitchen.  Those displaying china items ate Portland residents Jane Spencer and Alice Paxson and Geneva residents Larry and Pat Elick, who formerly lived in Portland.

Received recently is a 1931 Dunkirk High School senior class composite.  The Portland High School class of 1968 has also donated a class composite of their 174 members to the museum.  These, as well as composited from other county schools, draw much attention as visitors search for photos of family members and friends.

Also on display is a painting by Charlene George, recognized artist and was an art teacher at Judge Haynes Elementary School, and other paintings done by Harry Leonard and his daughter-in-law, Vicki Leonard.   A sampling of model cars which were collected by the late Ralph May and portraits by early Jay County photographers are also still on display.

Another recent acquisition is a bed which belonged to Judge and Mrs. Emerson McGriff.  Judge McGriff was a Judge of the Circuit Court when the Jay County Courthouse was built in 1916.

A showcase in the Domestic Arts Room holds the thimble collection of the late Linda Garringer.  It reflects Linda’s extensive travels and gifts from friends.



Museum Hours

The Jay County Historical Museum will be closed on Mondays.  

The museum is open from Tuesday through Friday at 10 to 4:00 PM. 

Monday and Saturday the museum is open by chance or by appointment.