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South Shore Foundation Contributes to Bull Shoals Museum Project
July 2003
Foundation Grants Funds to Historical Society
Foundation Grants Funds to Historical Society

Bull Shoals Historical Society President Bill Jeffrey (standing, left) and Secretary Bob Harper (seated, left) with Bull Shoals Mayor Margaret Hall (center) and South Shore Foundation Trustee Jodie Elizabeth Jeffrey gather around the first telephone system (PBX) used in Bull Shoals at the Crow Barnes Resort in the early 1950s. The items are on loan by NATCO to the new Bull Shoals Museum which opens July 4th. The South Shore Foundation, the charitable arm of NATCO, recently granted the historical society funding to reprint a souvenir brochure entitled "A Pictorial History of Bull Shoals Dam and the Town of Bull Shoals." The $2,940 grant will make 5,000 copies of the brochure available at the Bull Shoals Museum in the Kirby-Boaz building at 717 Central Blvd., Bull Shoals, and at other sites. The museum's grand opening is July 4 at 11 a.m. Hours are Thursday - Saturday, 10 - 3. Historical society volunteers did all the work except hanging dry wall to remodel the 800-square foot space donated by Kirby-Boaz Funeral Directors into a museum. Brooks-Jeffrey Marketing donated design and production of a museum brochure.

Bull Shoals Historical Society and the Bull Shoals Lake - White River Area Chamber of Commerce are preparing for the Bull Shoals Museum's Grand Opening on July 4th at 11 a.m. The museum now has a permanent home in space donated by Kirby-Boaz Funeral Directors, next to the funeral home at 717 Central Blvd. Museum hours will be 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday through October.

With grant funding from the South Shore Foundation of $2,940, the historical society is able to reprint a souvenir brochure for distribution in the area and at the museum. Publicity materials for the museum are also being donated by Brooks-Jeffrey Marketing, Inc.

An outdoor tent with folding chairs will be the site of the grand opening ceremony. It will include the present and past mayors of Bull Shoals and music by the First Baptist Church summer youth group and the Bull Shoals Community Bible Church. Fred Taylor, pastor of the Presbyterian Church, and Baptist pastor Jerry Backus will take part, as will mayors of other Marion County towns.

The historical society's goal is to preserve the area's cultural heritage and to educate the community about its history and the people who made it. The museum will also serve as an attraction to visitors. Permanent exhibits include items from the construction of Bull Shoals Dam, with core samples from the dam construction site, workers' time tags and pay stubs. The Corps of Engineers is providing photos of dam construction over 50 years ago (1947-51).

Also on permanent display will be items from all American wars dating back to World War I, displays related to Bull Shoals civic clubs, fire departments, the postal service, real estate sales - with original prices of lots in Bull Shoals, the first telephone switchboard and telephone, the first Bull Shoals newspaper, and other items of interest.

The public is being asked to loan items to the historical society for display in the museum. A special collections area will change periodically and will feature items from the Civil War era, at first.

Bob Harper, author of the local history book, History of Bull Shoals: The Best Little Town by a Dam Site, and historical society secretary, said proceeds from sales of the book went toward founding the museum, which was the long-range goal of the historical society. Some copies are still available for $15 at the museum. Other historical books, pamphlets and souvenirs can be purchased at the museum to help support the museum. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.

The historical society is pleased with the donated space because it has good exposure on the main street of Bull Shoals. A new sign painted in large letters on the window has been attracting attention, members said. Nearly all work on the building to prepare it for use as a museum was done by historical society members, with Harper constructing the 10 oak and glass display cases at a great savings.

Betty Morrow, whose family has been in Bull Shoals for four generations, said Nancy Maza, who won the Bull Shoals historical quilt raffle last year, has donated the quilt back to the museum for hanging. It was the first item to be placed in the museum, she said.

For additional information about the museum, the historical society, or to lend items for museum, contact the Bull Shoals Historical Society by calling Harper (445-4750) or Mrs. Morrow at 445-4694, or by mail at P.O. Box 150, Bull Shoals, AR 72619.

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