Since the Bicentennial in 1976,several people had individually begun collecting local history data. Mrs. Miriam Hudson had been interviewing longtime local citizens for oral history tapes in conjunction with the library. Ed Milton had been visiting longtime Hapeville
residents looking for pictures and information that related to local early history.
The Hapeville Historical Society is an outgrowth of the Depot Restoration Projects. In October 1980, it was believed the time was right to formally organize a Historical Society in Hapeville. Plans were made and publicized to have a pre-organizational meeting on November 3,1980, in the Hapeville Council Chambers to see if there was sufficient interest to organize a society. Forty-five interested persons attended. During the meeting, membership fees and classifications were adopted. A committee was named to work on bylaws, and temporary officers were elected. A nominating committee was designated by the group to work up a slate of officers.
On January 15, 1981, an organizational meeting was held with about 75 in attendance. Bylaws were discussed and approved. The following officers were elected: President, Ed Milton; Vice-President, Miriam Hudson; Recording Secretary, Sara Jones; Corresponding Secretary, Mary Hayes; and Treasurer, Mellvina Wells. A lawyer member, Bob McCord, volunteered to apply for and secure our state incorporation papers. Mrs. Mary Hayes pursued and obtained a non-profit status with gifts “tax deductible” from the Internal Revenue Service.
In the summer of 1981, the City made available to the Historical Society the west freight room and two offices on the west side of the Depot. In April 1982, the Depot Restoration Committee merged with the Historical Society. The combined energies were now channeled into developing the
thin two years of its formation, the Society boasted of a membership of over 300 and35 corporate members.