YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The Youngstown Historical Center of Industry and Labor is celebrating its 30th year in Youngstown. We spoke to the curator about how she’s recognizing the museum’s long history in the Valley.
The Steel Museum is holding a speaker series throughout the year with local historians and leaders to talk about changes to the labor industry in the Valley.
Marcelle Wilson has worked with the Historical Center since the ’90s and is now the curator. She says the museum’s very existence serves as an important reminder.
“We’re very hardworking and determined and we can succeed regardless of whether we have the steel industry here or not,” Wilson said.
The Youngstown Historical Center of Industry and Labor opened 30 years ago to document what Youngstown had lost. Today, it’s looking toward the future.
Tyler History Center executive director Bill Lawson is one of the speakers in the series and says that look toward the future partially relies on the younger generations who stay in the area.
“Their look at what’s happened over the last 40 or 50 years and this great transformation we had and where they feel like they’re going from here are those who remain and want to build this community,” Lawson said.
The Historical Center is looking at updating its exhibits in the future to create more hands-on experiences for children and those with memory loss. It’s also continuing its outreach work, including educating elementary school children on the history of the Valley.
Wilson says it’s important for kids to understand their past.
“The concept of having a tie to this area, why people came here, why they continue to support the area,” she said.
The center is hosting multiple other speakers, including OCCHA and former curator Donna DeBlasio. More information is available on the Steel Museum’s website.