Historic fountain restored


The Galion History Center is thrilled to announce the restoration and resurrection of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union Drinking Fountain on the Historic Union Schoolyard at 200 W. Walnut St.

The fountain was a gift to the community from the WCTU Galion chapter as a reminder “to drink water and not fall prey to the evils of alcohol.” The stone drinking fountain features a bronze plaque of Frances Willard, who founded the World Women’s Christian Temperance Union in 1883 and was a leading Prohibition activist.

The WCTU drinking fountain was originally placed on the Galion Public Square in front of the Preston Hosford Home (formerly the site of the Wyandot Building and currently the site of the Gazebo area) in 1911.

Around the 1940s, the WCTU fountain was relocated from the Public Square to Heise Park, and many Galionites will remember it being displayed near the Heise Park swimming pool and tennis courts. The fountain was removed from the park for safekeeping during park renovations in the 1990s.

At the end of 2022, the City of Galion donated the WCTU fountain to the Galion History Center. GHC staff then pursued community grant funds from the Ralph Boyd Foundation and the Galion Community Foundation for restoration and cleaning which were granted in the spring of 2023. The fountain has been in the care of Longstreth Memorials, which re-erected the fountain on the Historic Union Schoolyard on May 9. The WCTU Temperance fountain is no longer a working drinking fountain but rather a monument to an important piece of Galion’s history and a testament to the mission of the Galion WCTU organization.

The Galion History Center plans for the WCTU Temperance Fountain to be the meeting point for its new Uptowne walking tour – “Breweries, Bootleggers, and Buggy Whips: Galion During Prohibition” — that will release this summer. More information regarding this new tour will be released soon.

Submitted by the Galion History Center.

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