“If you have not visited the museum in the last year, you have not seen the museum.” So notes Joyce Yut, director of the Wm. McKinley Presidential Library & Museum.
“We now do business as the McKinley Presidential Library & Museum to gain recognition for Stark County’s own 25th President William McKinley. Our mission is education and also the collection, preservation and exhibiting of the cultural history of Stark County.”
The Stark County Historical Society was founded June 5, 1946. The trustees built and moved into the current museum building in 1963. The museum is privately owned and operated by the historical society and hosts about 50,000 guests per year. It does not receive government funds for daily operations and is not part of Canton City Parks.“We depend on admissions, memberships, donations and earnings on investments for operating support — and more than 10,000 hours of donated volunteer time annually,” Yut said.
The society also owns and manages the McKinley National Memorial.
“The McKinley Presidential Library & Museum is a wonderful community asset for all Stark County citizens to cherish and enjoy. The 108 steps to the memorial are the county’s biggest ‘stairmaster’ and are enjoyed by thousands of people each year,” Yut said. “We won the Best Museum in Stark County Award.”
In September, the museum opened a new $1 million permanent, in-depth exhibit on the county’s history called the Stark County Story.
Many things have changed and will continue to change, Yut said, noting that the museum is considering adding a new watershed exhibit, a working wind turbine and an interactive robot in the Discover World science gallery.
“Beginning in 2007, we conducted a capital campaign and raised $2.6 million to fund new permanent exhibitions including the Stark County Story, construction of a new conservation gallery for the growing collection, repairs to the McKinley Memorial and to fund the endowment for future support,” she said.
The museum’s motto is “Where today meets yesterday and discovers tomorrow.”
STARK COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
WHAT: Wm. McKinley Presidential Library & Museum; owned and operated by the Stark County Historical Society. Hours: Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 4.
Admission: $7 for adults, $6 for seniors (60 and older) and $5 for children ages 3 to 18; family membership $49 per year. Admission includes Hoover-Price Planetarium; presentations at 1 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays, and at 1 p.m. daily during summer months.
BOARD MEMBERS: Robert F. Belden, president; Don Deitemyer, vice president; Dennis Fulmer, treasurer; Robert Leibensperger, secretary; and Tedi Spotswood, auxiliary president; Dennis Belden, Leo Doyle, James Ewing, Paul Feaser, Shelly Haugh, Rick Lucas, Richard Pryce, Monty Reed, Ralph Regula, Elaine Russell Reolfi, Mark Samolczyk, Gary Streit, Karon Smetana, DeFrance Thomas, Curt Werren and Mark Wright.
PROCEEDS: Fund general operating costs.
DONATIONS: Donations can be mailed to Wm. McKinley Presidential Library & Museum, 800 McKinley Monument Dr. NW, Canton OH 44708.