Sherman County Historical Society and Museum
Open Daily 10 until 5 May through October
Sherman Ads Ag Building to Museum
The Dalles Chronicle
6/18/99

MORO--Once again Sherman County's people have come to the farm front. This time they hope to maintain a link between the masses and the farm. That link is critical to the long term future of farming.

On Sunday some 100 local people led by the wheat producers dedicated a new agricultural exhibit building now part of the county historical museum.

They will develop the story of agriculture in the county where grain commodity organizations were born in 1926.

The story line will be developed with farming and conservation equipment with graphic displays.

Carsten von Borstel of Grass Valley and Nancy Fields of Wasco were the museum's society's volunteer project leaders.

The 35 by 108-foot steel building is adjacent to the Sherman County Historical Museum. The museumn won the U.S.-Canadian Museum Association award for best interpretation of a story in a museum run entirely by volunteers.

Museum coordinator Sherry Kaseberg said the farm building project cost $110,387. Project receipts will be $108,704 on receipt of an Oregon Economic Development Department (OEDD) grant of $7,000. Project costs paid to date are $97,276 with $13,111 payable.

Kaseberg credited Sherman County rancher and County Judge Mike McArthur with the leadership resulting in the museujm society's professional work.

"Mike as president 1988-92 began the museum's professional self examination. During his administration we constructed a new museum wing and reviewed the bylaws," she said. Kaseberg is a wheat rancher and serves on the Sherman County Board of Commissioners.

Under McArthur's leadership the museum attracted major grants including $69,000 from the OEDD. Money from this source still flows through its Regional Strategies Programs.

A descendant of Sherman settlers, D.L. Belshe, gave $16,500 to start the building fund. More than 185 contributors joined the project. The museum reported organization contributions of $1,000 from Burlington Northern-Santa Fe Railroad, $7,000 from The Collins Foundation, $9,977 from the Columbia Plateau Conservation Resource Center of Sherman County and the OEDD, $32,000 from the Meyer Memorial Trust, $29,345 in membership contributions, $4,532 in non-member gifts and $1,396 in donated legal services.

Construction was by Phil Howell, a Sherman native and now a contractor based in Hood River.

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