Baker Block Museum Spring 2019 Newsletter

Page 1

Baker Block Museum Newsletter Experience. Discover. Connect. Spring 2019

INSIDE THIS ISSUE Director’s Notes and President’s Message, page 2 Membership form, page 3 Yellow River Baptist Church Homecoming, pages 4-5 Family Heritage Wall of Honor nomination form, page 6 Calendar of events, page 7 Laurel Hill’s April Arts & Heritage Festival, page 8

CONTACT Phone: 850-537-5714 Mail: P.O. Box 186 Baker, FL 32531 Email: Location: Corner of State Road 4 and Highway 189 in Baker

Induction Ceremony May 18, 11 a.m. Reception following

The annual Family Heritage Wall of Honor ceremony is scheduled for May 18. Nominations for this year’s program are due to the Museum no later than 3 p.m. April 30. Honorees will be inducted to the Wall of Honor during a ceremony May 18. Names will be added to the Wall of Honor board on display at the Museum. Names, biographies and photographs will be included in the Wall of Honor binder, also at the Museum, as well as appear in the fall newsletter. Who is eligible: Individuals who live(d) or worked in Okaloosa County, made a contribution for the formation or positive enhancement to the community are eligible to be nominated. Individuals may be nominated posthumously. Assistance with family history for the nomination application is available in the Museum research library. Requirements: Each nomination must include a nomination form (see page 4), a one-page biography and a 5x7 photograph along with a nomination fee of $30 for a single individual or $50 for a dual or family nomination.

2 Director’s Notes

President’s Message

April is Family Heritage Wall of Honor nomination month and we’re looking for your nominations. Each year the Museum honors Okaloosa County individuals who have positively contributed to their family, community or the history of this great county. Eligibility is simple. Nominees don’t have to be a well-known superstar, just a superstar in your world. Previous honorees have included mothers and fathers, grandparents and family friends. The only eligibility requirement is they must have either lived or worked in Okaloosa County and made a positive contribution to our communities here. A short biography is required with the nomination package. We have a wealth of family information in the Museum’s Research Library. Feel free to stop by during normal operating hours. We’ve included a nomination form in this month’s newsletter and you can find it online at www. Deadline for nominations is April 30, so get your nominations in.

Why become a member of the Baker Block Museum? Your membership helps support one of the best museums in Okaloosa County and preserves historical artifacts and exhibits of early pioneer life in the Florida Panhandle. Our members tend to be people who are interested in partnering with us to help preserve the rich history of Okaloosa County. By joining or renewing your membership today, you are letting us know the Museum is important to you and this community. We have a flexible membership program to fit you as an individual or a family. A single membership costs less than $2 a month and only $4 a month for a family. Membership benefits include discounts on books and calendars published by the North Okaloosa Historical Association, email notification of special events and an invitation to the NOHA annual board meeting each January. And memberships also make a great birthday or holiday gift. So come Experience, Discover and Connect and join or renew your membership today.

Tracy Curenton

Ann Spann

The Baker Block Museum is a 501-3(c) non-profit organization of the North Okaloosa Historical Association, Inc., and is managed by its Board of Directors. The Museum newsletter is published by the North Okaloosa Historical Society, Inc., and is an authorized publication for distribution to Museum members and visitors. Contents of the newsletter is copyrighted, all rights reserved. Items to be considered for the newsletter may be submitted to the Museum at P.O. Box 186, Baker, FL 32531 or emailed to Deadline for submission is March 15, June 15, Sept. 15 and Dec. 15 for consideration in the next quarterly issue. Articles received after the deadline will be considered for future use. All submissions will be edited for accuracy, clarity, brevity and conformance with newsletter guidelines.


North Okaloosa Historical Association Membership Form

Membership in the North Okaloosa Historical Association is open to anyone interested in preserving and documenting the history of Okaloosa County and its pioneering families. NOHA serves as the governing body for the Baker Block Museum. Member benefits include the quarterly newsletter, e-mail notification of special events, discounts in the Baker Mercantile store and an invitation to the annual meeting in January. Name: _____________________________________________________________________ Address: ___________________________________________________________________ City: __________________________ State and Zip Code: __________________________ Phone: ________________________ Email: _____________________________________

Type of membership (check one) q Individual $25 per year



$50 per year



$15 per year




____ I would like to volunteer at the Baker Block Museum ____ I have items I would like to donate to the Baker Block Museum ____ I have photographs that I will allow to be scanned for the Museum’s collection

Return this form with your contribution made payable to: North Okaloosa Historical Association Membership P.O. Box 186 Baker, FL 32531

The North Okaloosa Historical Association is a 501(c)(3) organization. Membership and any donations are tax deductible.


The Yellow River Baptist Church, located in Oak Grove, Fla., is celebrating its 179th anniversary. Founded more than 20 years before the Civil War, the church was a cornerstone of the community in north Okaloosa County. (Photo by Ann Spann)

Still going Strong

The Yellow River Baptist Church celebrates 179 years in June


he congregation of the Yellow River Baptist Church in the Oak Grove community north of Baker and Crestview is celebrating its 179th year during its June 9 homecoming. While it may not be the oldest organized church in the panhandle, it holds bragging rights as the oldest in Okaloosa County. The church was established on a Friday in 1840—21 years before the start of the Civil War, five years before Florida statehood and 25 years before Okaloosa County was established—with only nine members and was organized under the Bethlehem Baptist Domestic Missionary Society of Alabama. The Baptist church’s ministry

program sent missionaries, also known as elders, into frontier territories of the growing United States. Two elders found their way to the Yellow River community in the Florida Territory. Constituted June 14, 1840, the nine members signed 12 articles of faith, still legible in the original church records. In fact, the first line of the articles begins by identifying the church as the “Yellow River Baptist Church of Christ.” From inauspicious beginnings in log buildings to sharing space with the local masonic lodge, through world wars, cold wars, depressions and conflicts pitting brother against brother, the little church as continued. Even when tragedy struck in 1981 after


V Mail letter from home This letter, written by Bessie McCart Peacock to her son, Frank Enzor Peacock, in 1945, was in his possession when he died May 28, 1945. During World War II, letters to servicemen were reduced and limited in length to allow ship space for transporting men and supplies. Items such as this and more are available in the Baker Block Museum.

Original Church records, dating from 1840, include the Articles of Faith signed by the original nine members. arsonists set the church on fire causing an estimated $40,000 in damage and destroying the new piano and year-old roof, the church was determined to carry on. This year, as it does every

second Sunday in June, the Yellow River Baptist Church will celebrate another year during its annual homecoming. 179 years and still counting.


Family Heritage

Wall of Honor Nomintion Form Eligibility: Individual(s) who lived or worked in Okaloosa County Living or nominated posthumously Signature endorsement of at least one family member and one friend/acquaintance Full Name of Nominee(s): _______________________________________________________________ Town/Location: _____________________________________________________________

Nominator Name: ___________________________________________________________________ Address: _________________________________________________________________ Phone: ___________________________________________________________________ Email: ____________________________________________________________________ Requirements: Brief one-page maximum biography or story highlighting the positive contribution to, or enhancements of, the community, family life or traditions in Okaloosa County. 5x7 photo of nominee, black and white or color Donation of $30 per individual or $50 for a couple (e.g., Mr. & Mrs.) Check or money order payable to “Baker Block Museum” Donations are used to recognize nominees and to fund the program. Nominator or inductee to attend induction ceremony Submit in person or via email no later than April 30 at 3 p.m. Email: Mail: Baker Block Museum Family Heritage Wall of Honor P.O. Box 186 Baker, FL 32531


Calendar of Events April






1 2 3 4 5 6

1 2 3 4


7 8 9 10 11 12 13

5 6 7 8 9 10 11

2 3 4 5 6 7 8

14 15 16 17 18 19 20

12 13 14 15 16 17 18

9 10 11 12 13 14 15

21 22 23 24 25 26 27

19 20 21 22 23 24 25

16 17 18 19 20

28 29 30

26 27 28 29 30 31

23 24 25 26 27 27 29

7-13 National Volunteer Week and National Library Week

12 Mother’s Day


18 North Okaloosa Historical Association Board meeting, 6 p.m. 20 Museum open from 10 a.m-3:30 p.m.

16 North Okaloosa Historical Association Board meeting, 6 p.m. 18 Family Heritage Wall of Honor ceremony, 11 a.m. 18 Museum open from 10 a.m-3:30 p.m.

20 Easter egg hunt, 10 a.m. 18 Armed Forces Day 21 Easter Sunday 27 Memorial Day 27 Laurel Hill Arts & Heritage Festival, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 30 Family Heritage Wall of Honor nominations due

27 Day of DNA at the Crestview Library

21 22

15 Museum open from 10 a.m-3:30 p.m. 16 Father’s Day 20 North Okaloosa Historical Association Board meeting, 6 p.m. 21 First day of summer