Greencastle-Antrim history found in old Echo Pilots at Allison-Antrim Museum

Shawn Hardy
Echo Pilot

Most of the news of the Greencastle-Antrim community from the late 1940s through today is in bound volumes of the Echo Pilot, now housed at Allison-Antrim Museum, but two years are nowhere to be found.

Before the Echo Pilot office on East Baltimore Street closed in June 2020, the most frequently asked question was "What will happen to the old editions?"

Two years of bound Echo Pilots, covering the time from September 1957 to September 1959, are missing from the collection now housed at Allison-Antrim Museum in Greencastle.

Allison-Antrim Museum agreed to be the new home to the dozens of the bound volumes containing copies of Greencastle's hometown newspaper dating back to 1948-49.

"Allison-Antrim Museum is the repository for Greencastle and Antrim Township's history which, in addition to artifacts, includes books and other printed matter," said Bonnie Shockey, museum president and CEO. "The collection of the bound Echo Pilots is one-of-a-kind. The reconstructed German bank barn's storage area is climate controlled and provides a safe environment for artifacts, textiles and printed material. Greencastle-Antrim is fortunate to have the Echo Pilot collection."

The bound editions of the Echo Pilot are now organized in the lower level of the barn behind the museum house on South Ridge Avenue and can be accessed by appointment.

Some older copies of the Echo Pilot also were accepted by the museum, but they are in poor condition and not available to the public.

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When Joan Mohn, the museum's executive assistant, arranged the tall black books, she noticed that September 1957 to September 1958 and September 1958 to September 1959 were missing.

This is not a recent issue.

Sharon Baumbaugh, who with her husband, Wayne, owned the Echo Pilot from August 1982 to October 2005, discovered the gap when she was compiling the Remembering When history column.

She said it is possible G. Fred Ziegler, owner, publisher and editor of the Echo Pilot for nearly 50 years, took them home to read and never brought them back to the office.

The late Glen Cump, who was interested in local history, told her they may have been purchased by the Franklin County Historical Society — Kittochtinny when Ziegler's property was sold. Baumbaugh checked, but the historical society does not have them.

They may still somewhere in the community, tucked away in a someone's attic, and the museum would like to have the complete collection if anyone finds the two missing years.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the museum is open by appointment only, Tuesday to Friday, noon to 4 p.m., and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. To make an appointment, call 717-597-9010. Visitors must wear masks.