ATHENS AREA HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Thanks to the generous support the Society received from the Battle Creek and Athens Community Foundations, Athens Township, the Village of Athens, and many donors and volunteers the building of the beautiful courtyard has been completed. Building the courtyard was done as part of ongoing efforts to enhance and highlight the cultural and historic aspects of the Athens community.
The courtyard is located in the empty lot to the south of our building. The courtyard features several the historic community artifacts including the restored water drinking fountain, an original Athens street lamp (once powered by the local water mill) along with a hitching post from the 1870s. The fountain is the centerpiece and once again is the source of fond memories for many generations of Athenians. The courtyard is beautifully landscaped. It includes two (2) brick raised flow beds topped by bricks manufactured in Athens in the early years. The engraved pavers form a beautiful canvas for the landscaping and the artifacts in the courtyard. An area has been set aside to honor the Nottawaseppi Band of the Pottawatomie. The courtyard is secured by two (2) locally decorative iron gates built by a local volunteer craftsman .
The Fountain: The main feature in the courtyard is the restored old water fountain that originally sat for many yeas on the corner of the pharmacy across the street from our building.. It is again a working fountain decorated with arrows and spear heads obtained locally from area citizens. The fountain includes the original steel door, with its beautiful Indian brass head.The door was lost for almost 30 years and it was recently located by an Athenian and donated for installation on the fountain.. Restoration of the fountain was completed at a cost of over $3,000 paid by a generous couple who are members of the Society. The courtyard serves as a shining example of what residents of this little town can do when we pull together.
Following are some pictures of the courtyard, fountain and engraved pavers.