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THE HISTORY OF THE CRAWFORD COUNTY AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY

The first Crawford County Fair featured ten entries of sheep and hogs, exhibited in wagons on the present courthouse ground with what little needlecraft displays on exhibit shown on the second floor of the old courthouse. The first fair was held on land, which is now on the site of the courthouse on October 19, 1848.

Officers of the Society, which was organized in the fall of 1848, included Zalmon Rowse-president, Jacob Mollenkopf- vice president, and Andrew Failor- treasurer.

The second fair was held on October 25, 1849, with the ground, which would become occupied by the Quinby block used for mostly cattle exhibits. An old advertisement announced the amount of the premiums was $103.00.

The third fair, on October 17th and 18th, 1850, became an enlarged event. The fair was more of a cattle show than a fair, and was held on grounds purchased expressly for the purpose. This site was cut nearly in half by the Ohio and Indiana Railroad and a new site was purchased along Rish Lane, now Wise St., near Oakwood Cemetery. The land contained about eight acres and a rough zig-zag curve, scarcely a quarter of a mile in length, was developed for a race track. This was the site of the fourth fair. Fairs were held there yearly, including the 14th on September 18th – 20th, 1861. After this event, no fairs were held during the Civil War.

It was to be six years before another fair would be held. When in 1867 re-establishment of a fair for Crawford County was considered, it was found the old site near the cemetery was unsuitable because it had been laid out in a pasture and the two halls had been ruined during the war.

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