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This Union Township history will focus on Nashville. Information is from the Nashville oral history recording session on April 10, 2012. The panel was made up of Gale Honeyman, Juanita Rasor Bissett, her son Terry Bissett, and William Beck. Juanita has lived in Nashville all her life.

According to Gale Honeyman, in 1824, Benjamin Honeyman migrated from West Virginia to land on Kessler-Frederick Road from Shearer Road to the state highway (State Route 571). He marked off eight lots, calling it Nashville, but no one bought. About a decade later, two houses were built. In April 1827, lot No. 23 was purchased by the school board, School District No. 3 was formed, and a one room school building built. It housed fourth thru eighth grades. The younger classes attended the Kessler School. All were eventually included in the M-U school system.

There were several churches beginning in 1820 with a Dunker circuit rider holding services in homes to church buildings used by several denominations, sometimes sharing buildings. Brethren, Presbyterian, Methodist and at present day, Brush Creek Church of God and Nashville United Church of Christ. The UCC church is on land deeded to them by Mary Fouts Wheelock in 1878. The bricks to build the church were manufactured across the road. In 1966, the UCC had 408 members. It was remodeled in 1956.

There are four cemeteries in the Nashville area. The Vore Cemetery across 571, earliest date 1821. Wheelock Cemetery was established in 1832 by Lyman and Mary Foust Wheelock upon the death of their daughter, Eliza. The Honeyman Cemetery (1836) is on Shearer Road and the Curtis Cemetery (1834).

Smiley Richard Rawlins had a blacksmith shop on the corner of 571 and Nashville Road. In 1926, the Shellhaas family had a Blue Sunoco station between Kessler-Frederick and Nashville Road facing 571 (William Beck was born in the back of the station). They also sold some groceries and produce. A man brought them fish caught in Lake Erie. He also sold to the West Milton Inn. There was a sugar mill between the curve at the east end and what was the recycle business. There have also been a plumbing business and a TV repair business.

Behind the big rock at the top of the hill at State Route 571 and Kessler-Frederick Road, the kids in the area found lots of arrow heads and pieces of flint. They also spent lots of time playing on the rock and sledding down the hill. The young boys were titled the Nashville Outlaws. They would hop the train in Nashville, ride to Ludlow Falls, hop off and swim in the falls, hop back on and ride home to Nashville. They spent many hours swimming and fishing local creeks, hunting and trapping. They played softball at the Nashville Coon and Gun Club and later at the UCC Recreation Park, having some really good teams and competing with other area teams. The Coon and Gun Club had a trap shooting range. I remember, as a kid, going there with my dad and his friends to watch them shoot trap. It closed several years ago. The clubhouse was torn down this last year and new homes are being built on the land..

Juanita shared about the food truck that came every Wednesday. It was like a school bus. You entered the back, walked the aisle to shop, paid and exited out the front door. There was also a bread truck with a regular route. And there was the Jewel Tea man on his regular route.

There are so many interesting and funny stories and so much more information on this DVD. It can be viewed in the history room at the M-U Library. They are also shown periodically on the West Milton Public Access station (channel 5).

Doug Christian, retired County Engineer, presents an excellent program titled “Forgotten Communities of Miami County”. He presents pictures and facts about 20 communities that no longer exist. As Thelma Schultz Miller said, “They are gone but not forgotten.”