A new glossy picture book puts an exclamation point on Schiller Park's sesquicentennial celebration this year.

"Schiller Park Across Time: Celebrating 150 Years" documents through photos, paintings, drawings and supporting text the history of German Village's most iconic greenspace.

Katharine Moore, chairwoman of Friends of Schiller Park, said the book was 18 months in the making and is a serious tribute to the park and the people who have made it the crown jewel of German Village.

"I don't think it's changed at all in the fundamental sense," Moore said of the park.

"It has always been the sense of community and recreation for our community. That's what it was 150 years ago. That's what it is today."

The 182-page book -- printed by the Donning Co. Publishers of Brookfield, Missouri -- is on sale for $150 and available at the Meeting Haus or online at germanvillage.com. Proceeds from the sales will benefit Friends of Schiller Park.

It was officially introduced to the public at a special ceremony Saturday, Dec. 2.

A jury of three artists -- Wayne Lawson, retired director of the Ohio Arts Council; Mary Gray, director of the Ohio Arts Council's Riffe Gallery; and Jeff Stahler, author and illustrator of the comic strip "Moderately Confused" -- selected the many paintings and other artwork featured in the book.

Pictures, some historic and dating back before the turn of the 20th century, detail everything from family events to the dedication of the Friedrich von Schiller statue July 4, 1891.

The park was originally called City Park, then Schiller Park and went through a few name changes only to be rededicated as Schiller in 1930.

Terry Sherburn, who is the historian of Goodale Park, collected several vintage plate photographs taken in Schiller, which he allowed Friends of Schiller Park to use in the book, Moore said.

"He's had them for almost 10 years," Moore said.

Sherburn also recommended Moore footnote all of the photos for historic accuracy, she said.

Larry Hamill, owner of Larry Hamill Photography, took pictures of every single piece of artwork featured in the book.

For more than 40 years, Hamill, also an artist, has been working from his East Deshler Avenue studio, which overlooks the pond on the southwestern portion of Schiller.

"It's just been fascinating to see the evolution of the park," he said.

gseman@thisweeknews.com

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