He told about 30 of the club’s members how teacher Ron Morris formed a Young Historians group at the school. “Dozens of field trips all over the state were taken and history came to life under his leadership,” McGee said.
The school received news that a historical cabin was found encased in a building that was being torn down in Amish country in northern Indiana. The logs in the cabin dated to 1865. The owners of the building were so impressed with the Young Historians that they agreed to sell the usable logs to them for $500.
McGee made a call to a grandparent of one of Young Historians who donated the $500 and arranged to have a front loader truck pick up all of the logs needed for a cabin on school grounds.
On a fall Saturday in 1991 about 65 parents and a bunch of students showed up for the cabin raising, during which they were served food from a Bob Evans Restaurant.
“We had the good fortune of having several fathers who were home builders put on the roof after the log base was up,” McGee said. “After a couple more months a wrap-around deck was built, shake shingles were put on the roof, a loft was built and a quarry stone fireplace was built by my middle son, Bill.”
The DeHaan Foundation provided $5,000 and local businesses contributed money and goods to construct the cabin, which was named the McGee Heritage Center after McGee retired.