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Old Zion Lutheran building, church items to be auctioned

By Staff | Aug 23, 2019

The McHenry County Historical Society is planning an auction sale Saturday, September 14, 2019 at 11:00 in Towner at the corner of 1st Ave. and 4th St SW (old Zion Church). Most of the contents of the church, the church building, and 4 lots will be auctioned off by ZBS Auctioneers of Harvey, ND. This is a historic sale since the church contents have been locked up for almost 30 years. There are many treasures yet undiscovered! Some of the items can be seen on AUCTIONZIP.COM, there are many unique items, something for everyone. Lunch will be available so come out and enjoy the day!

All the proceeds will go towards the repairs of the new “McHenry County Western Museum”. The new museum will preserve, protect, and display the history of McHenry County and feature the western heritage of the county. Also, a main attraction will be the Hawkins’ collection of Louis L’Amour memorabilia. Meredith Hawkins Wallin, daughter of Reese and Margaret Hawkins, has graciously donated her parent’s lifetime collection of Louis L’Amour memorabilia. Reese and Margaret were close personal friends of the writer, Louis L’Amour and the artist, J.A. Kirpatrick. Though the Hawkins family lived in Jamestown much of their lives, Margaret Benson Hawkins grew up in Bottineau and maintained her close ties to her relatives in the Upham and McHenry County area. Reese and Margaret now rest in Melankton Cemetery with Margaret’s parents, Judge Asmundur Benson and Sigga Freeman Benson.

The Hawkins Collection provides a unique opportunity to share he story of the western frontier with others from our country. There are extensive personal items and memorabilia from Louis L’Amour in the Hawkins collection, collected over many years by Reese and Margaret. They accompanied Louis on some of his research trips that gave accuracy to every scene he wrote. They visited him in his homes in California and hosted Louis and his family in Jamestown. This collection, grounded in Louis’ decade-long close friendship with Meredith’s parents, is believed to be the largest collection of Louis L’Amour items and memorabilia outside the L’Amour family. The collection also includes paintings by J.A. Kirkpatrick, a North Dakota authentic western artist. The paintings are a 5′ x 8′ framed oil painting, and a 6′ x 21′ mural on canvas. Both are western scenes and will work nicely in the McHenry County Western Museum!

We have also been gifted a stagecoach that belonged to Chris Schatz, a very generous gesture by the Schatz family, and a great fit for the Western Museum!

We are blessed to be trusted with these generous gifts are we are working on preparing a safe and secure area to house and display these donations. Your donations and memberships are needed! The McHenry County Historical Society needs the support of the County through donations of finances, time, and talents. In order to be prepared for the auction we will be needing volunteers to load items onto trailers. We have set a community workday on Saturday September 7, 2019 at 9AM. If you are able to help out on this day in any way please call Anna at 701-537-5551. Lunch will be provided. We are excited about the prospect of a Museum in our County, and we hope that many will be able to attend the historic sale of the items locked away for decades! Please check out AUCTIONZIP.COM for more information. Check out our Facebook page also, McHenry County Historical Society. New members always welcome!

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