Antique desks are displayed in the three-room Weymouth School in Medina Township.
BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE Enlarge
Weymouth School has gone through several incarnations since it was built in 1925, and history is preserved within its rooms.
Besides being a schoolhouse for local students, it also housed a school for disabled children in 1956 and later became the first county-supported school for disabled students in the state.
Today, the Weymouth Historical Society operates a museum in the three-room school, part of the Remsen Building, 3324 Myers Road, Medina Township.
If, however, township trustees, citing maintenance costs, follow through on their plan to sell the Remsen Building, the future of the school is uncertain.
The township-owned building is leased by Medina Creative Housing, which subleases to the Weymouth Preservation Society, which pays $200 a month rent.
The building also houses the Medina Soccer Association.
Trustees have said they are looking into breaking the lease they signed with Medina Creative Housing in December and have hired an attorney, to be paid $250 an hour, to look into the matter.
The lease “is preventing us from getting fair market value,” Trustee Ken DeMichael said previously. “The owner — Medina Township — is losing money.”
Creative Housing, the Medina Soccer Association and Dave Clardy of Intervention for Peace all have offered to purchase the building.
If Clardy is successful in his attempt to buy the building, there are no guarantees the preservation society would be able to remain.
Clardy has said he would like to take over the storage/work room and share the community room.
That possibility concerns Susan McKiernan, president of the preservation society, which operates the museum in the building.
She said she has put in endless hours and a lot of her own money — more than $8,000 — renovating Weymouth School, which she called a “derelict building.”
“If they close us down, we’ll give our important stuff to the historical society,” McKiernan said. “If we have to leave, we’ll still function.”
She said she was given assurances by past trustees the society could stay in the building. In a letter from trustees to the Medina County Auditor’s Office, dated Aug. 29, 2013, it said the preservation society would be maintaining space in the Remsen Building to display historical items for residents to view.
It was signed by then-trustees Michael Todd and Ray Jarrett and DeMichael. Only DeMichael remains on the board of trustees.
“They never said they were going to pull this out from under us,” McKiernan said.
“We’ll still have the WPS. The whole township will lose out.”
Not only does the preservation society maintain artifacts, it has hundreds of old township photos and documents.
McKiernan, who also records township history, said she feels somewhat foolish for putting so much of her own money into renovations at Weymouth School.
“That’s money that should be going to my grandchildren,” she said. “But I’m glad I did it. I care about my community.”
She said she and Scott Benson, vice president of the preservation society, do some kind of work for the nonprofit organization on a daily basis.
“We’re not going to stop,” McKiernan said. “We’re going to keep doing our work and keep our heads above the fray.
“Everything we do is for the good of the community.”
For information on the society, visit www.weymouthpreservationsociety.com.
Contact reporter Bob Finnan at (330) 721-4049 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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