Minutes of Meeting

Coppell Historical Society

December 10, 2011


Present:  Don Carter, Pete Wilson, Ken Hevron, Dave Murph, Dave Totzky, Bob Timmerman, Nan Botzau, Martha-Allison Blewer, Pat Quinlan, Barbara Webster, Paul Lorrain, Delbert Onstott, Joy Onstott, Jean Murph, Barbara Lee


The meeting was called to order by President Barbara Lee at 10:25 a.m.


Public Presentation at the Start of the Meeting:


There was supposed to be a guest speaker from the city council to speak to the group about plans and progress on the old downtown project, but, at the last minute, she was ill.  Instead, Jean Murph and Bob Timmerman talked to the group before the business meeting.


Jean Murph reported that the firm that has purchased the old city hall building and old fire station in Old Town has received approval from the city council to add brick to the buildings, with a façade, with the dates of the original buildings displayed at the top.  The owner wants to preserve the old water tank, also, and he will be working with the city to decide how the tank will be used.


Jean also presented historically significant items that she has found:  bark from the final tree to be removed from the original site of the Kirkland House and railroad spikes from near the location of Coppell’s original train depot.


Bob Timmerman, with Ken Hevron, gave a report on the Farmers’ Market.  The city has been very helpful in moving the Market to its temporary location during construction downtown, providing such amenities as water and electricity, a façade, and signage.  There are thirty-five regular vendors at the Market, with a waiting list for others.  The Market currently charges $5 per booth per Saturday to a vendor, and the price will go up to $10 starting in January.  However, the Market board does not want to raise the price just to make money.  Presently, the Market is there to support Coppell and the vendors who operate there.  The Market has successfully incorporated the SNAP imitative, which replaces the old food stamp program, and a debit card program that provides tokens that can be used to purchase items within the Market.


Jean Murph reminded everyone that it was a joint venture of the Farmers’ Market, the Old Downtown Merchants’ Association, the city, and the Historical Society that made possible the last city celebration at the start of construction of Bethel Road.  That sort of cooperation should continue.


Business Meeting:


The minutes of the last meeting were corrected by Martha-Allison Blewer to clarify that she is not the only person working on a policy for acquisitions.  The minutes were approved as corrected.  Moved by Jean Murph, seconded by Joy Onstott.


Dave Murph presented a treasurer’s report that showed expenses for the last month of $2,366.32, all of which have been transferred out of the special fund which has been created to account for money provided to the Society by the city.  Jean Murph moved and Martha-Allison Blewer moved that the special fund be named City of Coppell Grant Fund.  The motion carried unanimously.


Barbara Lee reminded everyone that annual dues are due next month.


Don Carter and Dave Murph reported for their committee that they had examined the location of the Society’s filing cabinet at the library.  If we are to acquire another filing cabinet to be placed there, we will need to work out the details with the library director.


Pat Quinlan reported that, although she has not received the weekly report on the Kirkland House from this week, work is being done at the site, all outdoors.  She and Barbara Lee were asked to look at a trim paint color by the contractor, and they approved it.


Pete Wilson reported that filming for the historical DVD has been completed.  Kevin Mote will now finish producing the video and is planning to have it completed and copied for us by the middle of February.  The Society, initially, we have fifty copies of the disc.


Pete Wilson also reported that he has begun using Ancestry-dot-com to search for information on George Coppell.  So far, no charges have incurred due to his using a free trial offer.  So far, he has acquired several items such as George Coppell’s immigration record and ads in a Princeton yearbook that mention the Coppell financial firm.  The most recent fact uncovered is that George Coppell’s step-grandson died in 1994.


Pete Wilson also reported that Joanne Smith has turned over records and photo albums that were created by Jeanne Heath, who served as Society secretary and historian for many years.


Pete Wilson suggested that the Society consider having an additional plaque made for Coppell Heritage Park, to be unveiled whenever the Park is ready for dedication.  There was discussion about possibly making that plaque be the first in a continuing series of plaques that could be designations of historical sites and structures within Coppell.  It was suggested that maybe the Society could partner with the city of Coppell to create these official historical designations, possibly with both the Society’s logo and the city’s.  At first, it was suggested that after the first plaque, the city might be the sponsor of the designation program, but, after discussion, the Society felt that it would be better if the Society headed up the program, at its own expense, but with the cooperation of the city.  The city already has been giving an annual grant of cash to the Society that could be utilized for such a program.  Pete Wilson moved and Martha-Alison Blewer seconded that the Society move forward on the idea.  The motion carried unanimously.  A committee was appointed to work on the project:  Pete Wilson, Jean Murph, Martha-Allison Blewer.


The next meeting of the Coppell Historical Society will be January 14.


The meeting was adjourned at 11:51 a.m.



Wheelice (Pete) Wilson, Jr.

Recording Secretary

Coppell Historical Society

Cell 972-741-3894

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