Some N.A.P.A. History
Our Log Cabin was originally built in 1850 on Brookfield Road, Port Colborne and was listed in the census in 1841. In 1899 it was purchased by Jacob Henry and Christina (Young) Henry. Jacob Henry added rooms and built an upstairs as his family grew larger. In September 1980, after a fire and the replacement of the dwelling, the log cabin was donated to N.A.P.A. by Ernie and Phyllis Henry Carver. In April of 1981, restoration was started and with everyone pulling together and restoring the cabin it was open to the general public at the 1982 Annual Show. Marie Henry is in charge of scheduling themes that would take place in the log cabin each year.
At the 2009 Annual Heritage Display, it will be Christmas in July with all the trimmings so come and check it out. There will also be spinners and weavers demonstrating their craft.
KRAMER BLACKSMITH SHOP
The Kramer family first settled in the Bethel area in 1826, when the family's great-grandfather, David, settled somewhere on Miller Road, probably between Highway 3 and Second Concession after arriving here from Germany. His son, John was the first owner of the shop and John's son Andrew was the next generation of Kramer's to use the shop. The building became a woodworking shop for Andrew, who made a variety of wooden implements from canes to sleighs to furniture. In 1948, Andrew died, and the farm was passed to his son John O. Kramer. He used the shop for general mechanical work, especially automobile and tractor repairs. In 1970 he became ill and from that time forward until his death in 1977, he used the shop occasionally, mainly for lawnmower repairs. The family sold the field on which the shop sat to Blake Steele, an area farmer.
The Kramer Blacksmith Shop was donated to Niagara Antique Power association by the Kramer family descendants Annie, Viola, Lorene and Rev Clarence Kramer. It was donated with a full complement of tools, and products that were made in the shop by the Kramer's grandfather, father and brother.
Bruce and John Mittlestead, owners of the Bethel Sawmill saved the shop from the bulldozer, and with a group of N.A.P.A. members and the "Bethel Boys" they took it down numbering each piece of the original wood and trucked it to the show grounds on the Wilfred Learn farm at the intersection of Wilhelm Rd. and Second Concession. Bruce and John Mittlestead were responsible for the delivery to the show grounds and there it was erected again.
Jackie Otis is our resident blacksmith and has been for the last ten years. Come and watch her work at the forge. You can also ask her to burn you the N.A.P.A. Logo on a piece of wood to take home as a souvenir.
ARTS, CRAFTS AND MODEL BUILDING
We have a new building as of 2008. It started with a grant from Port Colborne Hydro Inc. for part of the expense of the building and then a crew of members working very hard to complete the building in time for the show. With donations from club members and the community we were able to complete this building in time for the 2008 show. With the erecting of this building we were able to cut the big expense every year of renting 2 tents. Half the building is where you can peruse and purchase local arts and craft items and the other half is where you can observe operating steam engines and models.
In 1975 it was voted to have a church service on Sunday morning. Hugh Clark was suggested to be the minister and he continued until 1977. Karl Fretz took over in 1978 through 1993. In 1993 the club discussed not having a Sunday church service and it was pointed out by Bud Speck that the service is part of our heritage, and that this country was founded on Christian beliefs and if we are preserving old machinery and forgotten ways, that it is not only our obligation to preserve our service as part of our heritage, that it is our privilege. Carl Booth suggested, and a decision was made at that time, that all engines be stopped from running until the church service is over and this rule is still in effect today. Bud Speck stepped in and scheduled church services from 1994 through 1996. Karl Fretz took over the scheduling of services in 1997 and in 1998, Ken Benner scheduled services because Karl was not at the show that year. Karl Fretz was back scheduling services for the 1999 annual show and continued to schedule services every year until 2006 when Debbie Grimes Ventura took over. Please join us Sunday morning and share the worship.
KIDDY CART RIDES
In 2002 it was decided that N.A.P.A. needed a kiddy ride so Carl Booth and Roger Robert acquired the barrels and the wheels and Roger Robert and Ron Logan proceeded to make a kiddy cart ride for children who attend the show. The Kiddy Carts are pulled by an antique lawn mower tractor. Make sure the children who visit the show get a chance to go for a ride.
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