Canal Winchester zoning officer Andrew Dutton asked Landmarks Commission members for their help Monday in updating the Ohio Historic Preservation Office's inventory of historic homes.

Canal Winchester zoning officer Andrew Dutton asked Landmarks Commission members for their help Monday in updating the Ohio Historic Preservation Office's inventory of historic homes.

Dutton told Canal Winchester Village Council's Old Town Committee two weeks ago the OHPO office asked the village to help update the records of historic properties and to get all the records online. The village has 380 homes on the list.

The OHPO maintains information about each of those properties, including a picture, stories, property owner, architectural details and history of the property, Dutton said.

"The last time it was updated was the mid-1980s," he said of the inventory list. "It has been a good 25 years since anyone looked at it."

The village is receiving assistance from the Eastland-Fairfield Career & Technical Schools.

interns will take pictures and gather general information, including the names of property owners, Dutton said. But he said he needs help compiling the rest of the information, including the architectural and historical information, which he said will be the most difficult to collect.

Landmarks Commission member Patrick Lynch said the village will need to update the photographs and double check the information.

Dutton said information will need to be gathered by someone with more expertise than the Eastland-Fairfield students.

Lynch asked if Canal Winchester Area Historical Society members were interested in assisting with the project. The historical society also maintains information about historical properties in town, said Mike Ippoliti, a member of the Landmarks Commission and president of the historical society. However, he said, most of the members are in their 70s and 80s and are unfamiliar with the digital world.

"We are starting to digitize," he said. "Most of them have no idea what that even means. You probably could get some volunteers some of the younger ones."

Greg Jeffries, who attended the Landmarks Commission meeting with his son, Matthew, as part of a requirement for a Boy Scout project, said some of the scouts might be interested in helping with the inventory as part of their Eagle Scout work.

Landmarks Commission member Brent Foley volunteered to speak with the Canal Winchester Rotary Club and the Canal Winchester Lions Club to see if those groups are interested in helping update the OHPO inventory.

Landmarks Commission members will discuss the project at their next meeting on April 25. Lynch said anyone interested in volunteering for the project should attend that meeting. Village officials can then take the list of properties and divide it up among the volunteers.

Landmarks Commission members also wondered if homeowners should be individually notified that the update is taking place. Commission member Joe Messerly said it might make sense for volunteers to have a flier in hand and to knock on doors to let residents know about the work.

"With the number of properties I don't know how realistic that is," Dutton said. "It could take a good amount of time to contact everyone."

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