Clock Tower

Out of the Clock Tower

Hello and welcome to the Greene County Archives' blog, "Out of the Clock Tower".  Please join us as we share information on archival issues, news, special events, and highlights from our collection.

Before the archives program began in Greene County in 1996, permanent records were stored in every conceivable space, in basements, garages, and closets. Usually they were in boxes of various shapes and sizes, although seldom adequately labeled, but occasionally they were just in loose piles of books and papers. Most notable were the old records stuffed into the clock tower of the County Courthouse, where they shared their home with pigeon droppings.

Now, there is a clean, environmentally controlled, well appointed location for the county archives, where our historical records are housed in standard sized boxes on steel shelves. We have taken note of their journey in the name for our blog.

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Aug 11

She died at her home,

Posted on August 11, 2016 at 3:30 PM by Elise Kelly

A month before the Allies defeated the Nazis in April of 1945, Helen Moorehead Taylor died at her home “The Kingdom” in Xenia, Ohio. Moorehead, a Vassar grad and member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Greene County Historical Society, was the daughter of Dr. William G. Moorhead and Helen (King) Moorehead.

Her father, Dr. Moorehead, had been the pastor of the First United Presbyterian Church in Xenia between 1871- 1875. Prior to Moorehead’s tenure at First United, Moorehead served as a missionary for eight years in Italy.
Helen G. Moorehead Taylor

When Helen was born in 1870, the family had moved back to the States. Helen's father was well liked in Xenia. Greene County Surveyor, Washington Galloway often remarked how Moorehead gave “good sermons.” (See Image Below)

                                    Washington Galloway 1874 Diary

sdfsf  Moorehead eventually went on to be the president of Xenia’s United Presbyterian Theological Seminary. Located on West Third Street, the building had once been the Union Female Seminary and a Musical Academy.

Left Image: Xenia Theological Seminary

In 1896, the building was rededicated as the United Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
                                           1896 Greene County Atlas

By 1908, nearly one thousand students received their theological education at the seminary.
Today, the building is now the Evangelical United Methodist Church.

Now let's turn our attention to Helen's mother, Helen King Moorehead.
Helen's Mother
Helen's mother was the daughter of Joseph Warren King, founder of the Miami Powder Co. The powder company, formerly located in Goes Station (Greene County), produced black powder for rifles. During the Civil War, King’s powder was in high demand.
Present-day photo of the Miami Powder Company
   Survey Drawing of the Miami Powder Co., Levi Riddell's Survey Record Book 2

In 1871, the company added a steam engine for supplemental power and by 1891, the entire mill converted to electricity. King would not live long enough to see the electrical conversion having passed away in 1885 at his home which he named “The Kingdom.”

Once the mill converted to electricity, dangerous explosions were no longer a threat to the safety of the men who worked inside. After seventy-nine years of producing black powder, the Miami Powder Company closed its doors in 1925.

The Kingdom
"The Kingdom" was built in 1862 on East Main Street in Xenia. King's granddaughter, Helen G. Moorehead was married in his home in 1898. Helen married a physician from the District of Columbia. The couple lived in Columbus and Cincinnati before returning to Xenia in 1932. By 1940, Mr. and Mrs. Van der Veer Taylor were living right next door to “The Kingdom.”
                                      Back porch at "The Kingdom"

In January of 1945, Helen’s husband passed away. Less than two months later, Helen died from coronary thrombosis. Helen Moorehead Taylor's family lineage is comprised of many local historical figures. As an advocate for history, she must have been very proud of her family's local contributions. If any of our readers are interested, the Archives has Helen’s estate records along with her father's (Dr. William Moorehead) and grandfather’s (Joseph Warren King) estate records. You never know what you may discover and learn here in the Archives!

Until Next Time!
This Week's Trivia Question: What year did an explosion at Miami Powder Co. cause three workers to lose their lives?

Answer to Last Week's Trivia Question: What townships in Greene County encompass the Virginia Military Land District? - Beavercreek, Spring Valley, Xenia, Miami, Ross, Cedarville, New Jasper, Jefferson, Silvercreek, Sugarcreek, and Caesarscreek Townships. Bath is the only township not located in the Virginia Military Land District.


Jane Cairns
August 30, 2016 at 8:43 PM
Thanks for this post! I'm a researcher in Andover, Mass working on a story involving Helen's brother, archeologist Warren K. Moorehead. It's great to find this family background.

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