Minutes of Meeting

Coppell Historical Society

April 9, 2011

Members present:  Barbara Lee, Pat Quinlan, Nan Botzau, Tom Botzau, Juanita Strong, Barbara Webster, Jackie Parrish, Tom McMahon, Eilen McMahon, Pete Wilson, Paul Lorrain, Naomi McDowell

President Barbara Lee called the meeting to order at 10:19 a.m.

The minutes from the last meeting, corrected to include Kevin Mote on the Sign Committee, were approved.  Moved by Tom McMahon, seconded by Nan Botzau.

The treasurer’s report from Dave Murph was approved.  Expenses for the last month included $200 for website maintenance.  Income from a donation was $150.

Committee Reports:

Volunteer Fair Committee:  Tom McMahon reported that information from the library regarding its May 5 Volunteer Fair specifies that information from the organizations must be very detailed.  Since we cannot provide exact dates and times that we may need volunteers in the future, it was recommended that we graciously decline participation.  Pete Wilson pointed out that such specific information may not end up being required.  If so, the Society can reconsider.

Kirkland House Committee:  Barbara Lee and Pete Wilson reported that the latest communication from the city shows that very little work has been done on the Kirkland House.  The reason for the delays have been lack of work by the specialist who is to do the staining and window construction and the city’s overlooking getting the inspection done on things like sidewalk and toilet finishing.  The city inspection was to be accomplished by the end of last week so that the work on the sidewalks and plumbing can go forward right away.

The contractor’s contract to do the work has now expired with almost nothing being finished.  The city has decided to continue to work with the contractor to complete the work beyond the contract’s time frame.  There was discussion that the Society should re-examine its specifications of how the specialized work will be done in order to make practical progress.  For instance, if the specialist from Palestine, Texas, who is in charge of rebuilding the windows and staining the woodwork, who was recommended as an expert by Peggy Riddell, cannot or will not proceed immediately, possibly he should be replaced.  At least the staining process could apparently go forward now without further input from him.  According to the contractor, all the other interior work is being held up by this specialist.

The antique furniture, purchased by the Society for the Kirkland House, and now stored in the city’s abandoned former senior center, has been moved around by the city to prevent water damage from a minor water leak.  The city has notified us that that building is in the process of being sold and there is a likelihood that, since the completion of the Kirkland House seems distant, the furniture may have to be moved to another storage place.  The city has assured us that, if that happens, the city will find and possibly fund temporary storage in another location.

The city has mentioned to Barbara Lee that road construction at the intersection where the Kirkland House is located will begin in September.  That will result in lots of dirt and dust settling on the interior of both the Kirkland House and the Minyard Store.  Although the city has done major cleaning to the interior of the store, the construction may negate that effort.  The Society may have to go into the buildings and at least cover items and floors with drop cloths.

The impending road construction may also impact the opening and dedication of the sites, since it is possible that work on the Kirkland House could be finished at about the same time.  Traffic will be detoured, and access to the site will be difficult.  The road construction should take about six months.  However, after that, work will begin on the entire stretch of Bethel Road.  Clearly, the Society’s plans for the opening of the Kirkland House will have to be made with these facts in mind.

Pete Wilson moved and Tom Botzau seconded that the Society authorize Pat Quinlan, chairperson of the Kirkland House Committee, and Barbara Lee to contact Mindi Hurley once again and request a meeting to discuss ways to expedite the work on the Kirkland House, with specific authorization to make some changes to methods of completing the work if it will expedite the completion.  The motion was approved unanimously.

Sign Committee and Dedication Committee:  (These two committees were combined.)  Pete Wilson reported that the committee has recommended that the following signs be approved and submitted to the city for its approval:

                Two small metal plaques to be attached to each building, giving a very brief history of the building and giving credit to The Jean and Price Daniel Foundation, The Society, and the City of Coppell.

                One small wooden sign, hand-painted, telling the hours that the area will be open to the public.

                A “sandwich sign” which says, “Open,” and includes the name “Coppell Heritage Park” and the logo of the Society.

                A pole sign, similar to a Texas Historical Landmark sign, which will tell a brief history of the Heritage Park and the date of its opening.  (This sign cannot be purchased immediately since the dedication date will be needed.)

Jackie Parrish moved and Tom McMahon seconded the motion that the signs be approved, submitted to the city for approval, and, when approved, be ordered at Society expense (with the exception of the large pole sign).  The total cost of the signs will be $482.40.  The motion was approved unanimously.

(Note that the passage of this motion also included the Society’s approval of our proposed name for the entire one-acre historical area, which presently includes the Kirkland House, the Minyard Store, and the windmill: Coppell Heritage Park.)

Pete Wilson also reported that the committee recommended sponsoring a formal, rather elaborate dedication ceremony whenever the site is completed.  Ideas for the ceremony are included with these minutes.  Nan Botzau moved and Eilen McMahon seconded the motion that the Society get approval from the city to move forward with plans for a dedication ceremony, to be planned by the committee, chaired by Pete Wilson.  The motion passed unanimously.

Barbara Lee reminded everyone that it is time to elect new officers.  She will re-address this item at the next meeting.

Barbara Lee has received notice from the city that it is time again to apply for our annual city grant.  It was agreed that she should ask the city for $10,000 this next year.  She will make the presentation, which is due by May 17.

The next meeting of the Society will be May 14.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:27 a.m.

Recommendations from Committee

For Dedication of Kirkland House, Minyard Store, etc.

Proposed name for the entire one-acre block presently containing the windmill, the Kirkland House, and the Minyard Store:

                Coppell Heritage Park

Once the buildings are ready, the Coppell Historical Society will host a dedication ceremony for Coppell Heritage Park.  Some ideas regarding the ceremony:

Ideal time would be a Saturday morning when the Farmers Market is open, 10:00 a.m.

Don Carter and other Farmers Market members will be sure that the Farmers Market is agreeable to the activity occurring at the same time as their market.

Possibly make a large banner to hang near the windmill in advance of the ceremony to publicize it.

Some formal invitations will be sent out; event will be publicized in local papers, also.

Put out printed street signs about the event.

Ask the city to publicize the event in water bills, online, etc.

City council members will especially be invited to attend.

Other invited guests should include: Jim Jackson (State Senator), Kenny Marchant (Congressman), Elba Garcia (County Commissioner), Coppell’s Mayor, Coppell’s City Manager, Coppell’s Duty City Manager, Mindi Hurley (Coppell Director of Economic Development), Jim Witt (former Coppell City Manager), a representative from the Minyard family.

The Society should make a special effort to invite, personally, representatives from every family which has historical ties to Coppell.

The Society should be in charge of the dedication ceremony, should provide the lead speaker.

Specifically recognize Jim Witt and Clay Phillips for their roles in establishing Heritage Park.

Recognize a representative of the Minyard family, if present.

Recognize a representative of the Price Daniel Foundation.

There might be a larger pole sign erected which says, “Coppell Heritage Park,” and, if so, have the Mayor uncover the sign.

Have one of our members tell a brief history of the park, the windmill, and its buildings.

Recognize representatives from each family present who have ties to Coppell’s history.

Ask the pastor of Coppell’s First United Methodist Church (oldest church in Coppell) to give the invocation.

Ask the local Boy Scout troupes to present the flags.  Possibly coordinate an effort to have representatives from each troupe on the flag detail.

Have a Coppell High School student sing the National Anthem.

Ask someone to lead the Pledge of Allegiance.

Ask the Coppell Fire Department to bring out “Old Red” (the antique fire truck that the Society helped restore).

Ask the Coppell High School Band to participate (play National Anthem, etc.)

After the ceremony:

Have artifacts on display.

Have historic photos on display.

Have activities for children.

Ask Burt Bryan to portray Sam Houston.

Have other “reenactment” characters present (persons in costume).

Have complimentary refreshments, such as lemonade.

Wheelice (Pete) Wilson, Jr.

Recording Secretary

Coppell Historical Society

Cell 972-741-3894

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