Hayes D. Ulrey, with his camera in hand, was a familiar sight around Cardington all of his adult life. From the time he graduated from Cardington High School in 1934, Hayes, whose obituary in 1980, titled him as an “institution” in the village, served at various times, as its mayor, a council member, and for 56 years was associated with the Morrow County Independent newspaper.
Following his high school graduation he was employed by W. R. Conaway, editor of the local paper, as a linotype operator on the recommendation of Harley McClenathan who was leaving the position. During the next 56 years Hayes missed only one edition of the newspaper because he had arranged for his vacation or days off so as not to interfere with publication.
This was so he could travel with his famly on a trip through New England and he had arranged for Rarick Long as a replacement. Mr. Long later became editor of the Fredericktown newspaper.
Hayes was the Independent’s photographer, and some times its reporter and head writer. For a while, he was a Morrow County correspondent for the Columbus Citizen.
He was the village mayor during the its oil boom and prior to becoming mayor, he was a member of village council for five and one half years, serving as its president when the mayor resigned.
He was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church and its treasurer for 25 years.
Quiet and unassuming he had the longest consecutive years of service of anyone in the village at that time.
I remember seeing Hayes at every school function, from sports, school programs, special meetings, to events in the village. He always had his flash camera in hand. He passed away in his sleep on the morning of May 2. He was scheduled to photograph on May 5, 1980, the groundbreaking ceremony for the start of construction on the new Cardington water pipeline.
I miss Mr Ulrey, but I’m fortunate to be the recipient of some of his photos — courtesy of his family. His dedication to his hometown was a rarity when many young graduates opted to leave the small town. I will always remember Hayes Ulrey using his camera to shoot another photo in his hometown.
From the past
April, 1920: Hope of Ohio women that they would have an opportunity to participate in the presidential primaries April 27, vanished Saturday when John Druffel, of Cincinnati, representing the Ohio Anti-Suffrage Association, filed with Secretary of State Harvey C. Smith, a petition for a referendum on the Reynolds Law, which would have given them the right to vote.
April, 1940: Helen Wright, 17, of Johnsville High School, won the Morrow County Oral Spelling Championship by correctly spelling “separate.”
April, 1950: E. Allen Skinner of near Cardington, a driver for Greyhound Bus Lines, was honored for two years of accident-free driving.
April 1970: The Cardington-Lincoln High School was featured on the television show hosted by Jerry Razor, “Dance Party,” on Channel 4 in Columbus on April 6.