Cardington Community Park is mainstay throughout the years


I trust you had a warm and happy Father’s Day, honoring your fathers who are living and remembering, like me, with fondness those who are no longer with us.

The second annual Cardington Street Fair will take place Saturday, June 27, and most activities will take place in the area of the Cardington Community Park. The park has been the center of the village’s activities for over 100 years. A photo in 1911 shows the park lined with 250 Maple trees, making it an attractive place for passengers disembarking from the Big Four trains that ran on the track parallel to the park. The trains would stop to refill with water and the passengers took a stroll through our park or they visited the log cabin which had been donated to the village by Julius Linstedt. It was built in 1858 and he wanted it to become a museum. It was disassembled and the parts moved to the park by horses and wagons and then reassembled. The museum contained hundreds of irreplaceable items such as the lock on the door brought from Germany by Bill Ruehrmund’s grandfather, who walked to Cardington from where he landed in Baltimore. There was a flag carried by a soldier of the War of 1812, a saddle bag made by Slocum Bunker and owned by Preacher Bell, one of the earliest circuit riders in the area, and a cane and carpetbag over 165 years old brought from England by the Barges’ ancestors. Sadly all of these items were stolen at some point.

When the 1981 tornado destroyed every tree in the park, the log cabin stood like a beacon of hope for the community and suffered very little damage.

The park’s concrete bandstand was the scene of many concerts by the Cardington (community) band, the American Legion Drum and Bugle Corps, the high school band and many others. The current gazebo frame band stand replaces it and is also the site of entertainment as it will be Saturday. The Cardington Community Park, now with a shelter house and rest rooms, continues to be a favored site in the village.

June, 1915: “Miss Elizabeth Conaway is confined to her bed, the result of injuries received when her brother, Howard Conaway, fell from the top of a cherry tree, alighting on her while she was stooping over picking up cherries from the ground.”

June, 1925: “The school wagons are all back of the old West End grocery being painted by Lee Carter, who knows his business if anyone does. The wagons will look like new when school opens in September.”

June, 1945: Insect traps were being placed in Cardington by the U S Dept. of Entomology and Plant Quarantine to obtain information on the occurrence and status of the Japanese Beetle.

Sgt. James Rhineberger was recovering in an Army hospital in Leige, Belgium, from back injuries suffered when several cartons of canned food at a Quartermasters Supply Base fell on him.

June, 1955: Robert Walter Hardesty, 64, Morrow County Commissioner and Marengo hardware merchant, had died. He had been a commissioner since 1952, a member of the Morrow County Fair Board and a former Cardington resident. He had operated Hardesty Hardware at Marengo for 13 years.

June, 1985: Brian Philbrook of Cardington, had been accepted by the Ohio State University College of Medicine beginning with the fall quarter of 1985.