Saturday, January 18, 2003

Neighborhoods


Book recalls Fort Colerain and other Ohio battlefields

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COLERAIN TWP. - Edwin A. Kramb was surprised when he opened his Christmas gift.

The box contained copies of his new book, Buckeye Battlefields, published by Valhalla Press of Springboro.

Mr. Kramb's children paid for the project as a gift for their father.

"It came at a good time, with this year being Ohio's bicentennial," Mr. Kramb said. "I think it will bring a renewed pride and interest in our state's history. I was totally surprised by the gift."

Last summer, the retired electrical engineer and Korean War veteran traveled across Ohio to see and photograph 30 battle sites. They include obscure ones featured in the chapters "Brodhead's Raid on Coshocton" (1781) and "Blue Jacket's Raid on Fort Colerain" (1791).

After writing the book, Mr. Kramb all but gave up on finding a publisher. But Ken Kramb did not. He researched the publishing field and decided to start his own press with a limited print run. They have since ordered an additional 200 copies.

"We're really excited about Ed's book," said Irene Light, manager and buyer of Nature's Niche bookstore at the Farbach-Werner Nature Preserve. "It's perfect for the Ohio Bicentennial. It would make a good Valentine's Day gift."

The 197-page book contains stories about Ohio's distant, deadly and nearly forgotten military past.

Most people don't even know that a Fort Colerain existed. But on Jan. 8-10, 1791, Chief Blue Jacket led about 500 warriors in an attack on Dunlap Station, about 15 miles west of Fort Washington and not far from where Northgate Mall stands today. Mr. Dunlap, the founder, called his fortified town Colerain, and it included about 30 residents, a stockade and a few troops.

The siege lasted about 25 hours. The Indians tortured a settler in front of the fort, but the people inside refused to leave their compound. Although outnumbered, they held on until soldiers could arrive from Fort Washington.

"Traveling around Ohio was a fascinating experience that I wouldn't trade for anything," Mr. Kramb said. "I stopped at the Buffington battlefield, where the Confederate Gen. John Morgan fought the Union troops. I went to Fort Recovery, which Gen. Anthony Wayne built.

"When I walked through those lonely battlefields, with nothing but the wind whistling through the trees, the places seemed to call out to me, `Never forget.' "

Buckeye Battlefields costs $14.95. It may be obtained at Nature's Niche, Borders at Northgate Mall or by mail from Edwin Kramb, 6925 April Drive, Cincinnati, OH 45239-5438. Add $3 for postage.

Information: 923-3041. E-mail (Ken Kramb):valhallapress@woh.rr.com.

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LEBANON - The Warren County United Way is looking for volunteers to work directly with the staff to contact corporate leadership of major companies for the 2003 campaign.

The commitment will be 10-12 hours per week for five months. Time may vary based on knowledge of United Way, assigned accounts and other issues.

Call 932-3987 or e-mail duchmanowicz@wcuwl.org.

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OXFORD - "Partners in Art," a program for children ages 2 to 5 and their parents, will be held at the Oxford Lane Public Library at 10 a.m. Monday and Jan. 27.

Guest artist Diane Stemper will lead the group in the discovery of ideas for art, including painting and soft sculpture. Paint shirts or smocks are recommended.

Register by calling 523-7531. Or see the library's Web site at www.lanepl.org. Additional library information: 894-6557, ext. 101.

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OWENSVILLE - Parents of special-needs children will participate in "Parent Talk" from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at the Thomas A. Wildey School, 2040 U.S. 50.

The workshop, conducted by Families Connected of Clermont County, is designed to support, inform, share experiences and discuss families' triumphs.

A parent panel discussion will focus on keeping information accessible, up-to-date and organized.

The workshop is free. Lunch will be provided. Funding provided in part through the Clermont County Mental Health and Recovery Board and volunteers from various groups.

Snow date: Jan. 25. Information: Families Connected, 732-5034.

Randy McNutt's community column appears on Saturday. Contact him at the Enquirer, 7700 Service Center Drive, West Chester, OH 45069. Telephone: 755-4158. Fax: 755-4150. E-mail Rmcnutt@enquirer.com.




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