Twinsburg’s Centennial

1917 marked the centennial of Twinsburg Township. Numerous committees worked feverishly to put together a celebration worthy of the area, its inhabitants, and the founders. The week-long festivities commenced on Sunday, August 4th with church services held in both the morning and early evening on the pageant grounds and concluded the following Saturday with the highly anticipated Pageant. Other activities and events included a dramatization of fifty year old pranks pulled by schoolchildren attending Bissel Academy, family reunions, log rolling, band music, and old time Virginia reels.

One of the highlights of Twinsburg’s Centennial was it’s pageant. The Pageant was a faithful portrayal of the highlights of the area’s first hundred years from the earliest settlers right up to the modern day (or at least what passed for modern at that time). Over a third of Twinsburg’s populance (350 of 900) participated in the pageant, with 1,200 others in attendance.

Billed as a history of a town, in dramatic form, for many it was the high point of the celebration.  The Independent, which was the newspaper of Northern Summit County in 1917, reported that many people “pronounced it the finest pageant they had ever seen.”

The production was so popular it was produced in Cleveland during the following month. It was directed my S. Gertrude Hadlow.

View the Pageant Book here.

The Township of the time was fiercely religious and so was the Centennial. Opening festivities were imbued with a spiritual fervor. Both the Congregational and Methodist churches had hour-long services to kick off the festival. An excerpt from The (Hudson) Independent sums up the religious tone: “Let us come to this service with a keen realization of the meaning of the hour and let the whole community, young and old, render unto God, their Captain, their deepest allegiance and pledge their unfailing loyalty to the great cause of humanity, and show that with malice toward none and charity for all we enter this struggle reluctantly, but as true Americans, obedient to the stern daughter of the voice of God—DUTY.”

According to an article published in the Akron Beacon Journal: “No town in Northern Ohio has greater unity and loyalty among its people.” Unity and loyalty was on full-display for the duration of the preparation and subsequent festivities.

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