Wayne Co. Historical Society honors founder of farm museum
HONESDALE, PA — Joseph B. Park, 1896-1970, has been selected as the 2014 winner of the award “People Who Make a Difference in Wayne County Agriculture,” the first time the Wayne County Historical Society has given the award posthumously. The J. B. Park Farm Museum, located at the Wayne County fairgrounds, was named after Park and is visited by thousands each year during fair week.
Park’s life work was in Wayne County agriculture as a teacher and county agriculture supervisor, the first person to hold that position in the county. One of the requirements of that position was to visit the students at their farms, checking their projects such as chickens, cows and gardens. In the process, he became acquainted with hundreds of farm parents. As the parents acquired the latest in farming implements, they needed to discard the old. Park began collecting these discarded farm tools and machines and stored them in his house. Thus began the process that would later result in the farm museum.
Park retired in 1956, allowing time to pursue volunteer activities. He had been a board member of the Fair Association for many years and was a founding member of the Wayne County Historical Society. Working through both organizations, he launched his long-time dream of having a farm museum, a place to showcase farm implements from the farmers of Wayne County.
Park’s family will receive this prestigious award at the opening of the Wayne County Fair on Friday, August 1 at 6:30 p.m. on the small stage of the J.B. Park Farm Museum. All are welcome. Museum welcomes visitors during the Wayne County fair from noon to 8 p.m.