Historical marker added to downtown Youngstown landscape

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Tuesday was a historic night for the Mahoning Valley Historical Society before and during its 138th annual meeting.

A new Ohio Historical Marker was unveiled outside the Tyler Mahoning Valley History Center on West Federal Street. It recognizes the owners and businesses who previously occupied the landmark building.

On one side is Harry Burt, who invented the Good Humor Ice Cream bar in the 1920s. And on the other side is the Ross Radio Company, which was the electronics distribution company that called the building home from 1935 until it was bought by the Historical Society in 2007.

“This site, downtown, coming online in the near future is really a big leap of faith, and also in programming and capacity for our organization, and we’re so excited about it,” said Mahoning Valley Historical Society Executive Director Bill Lawson.

Also on Tuesday, the Historic Preservation Awards were handed out to honor area residents and organizations who take an active role in preserving historical buildings, sites and districts.

Community Revitalization Awards were presented for preservation and restoration efforts at the Henry Barnhisel House in Girard, Brookfield Township Cemetery, the Pollock Mansion on Wick Avenue and the North Bloomfield Town Hall.

And the Board of Directors Award of Achievement was given to the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation for its work in rehabilitating three homes in Youngstown’s Idora Neighborhood.

“Two of them are residential homes that not only did we restore, but we were able to place low to moderate income homeowners, and provide financial assistance and training for them to become homeowners,” said YNDC Executive Director Presley Gillespie.

Another home at 820 Canfield Road now houses YNDC programs and operations.

“We want to celebrate their success, to let the community know this is how you do preservation,” Lawson said.

They’re already asking members to think about nominating people and projects for next year’s awards.

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