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Chester Women's Club members learn about Misselhorn Gallery

  • Pictured at the March 24 meeting of the Chester Women's Club, left to right, Melissa Gross, club program chairman; Kay Bivens, founder and secretary of the Misselhorn Art Gallery Foundation in Sparta; Terry Waldron, president of the Misselhorn Art Gallery Foundation; and Nikki Aubuchon, vice president of the Chester Women's Club. Waldron was the club's guest speaker.

    Pictured at the March 24 meeting of the Chester Women's Club, left to right, Melissa Gross, club program chairman; Kay Bivens, founder and secretary of the Misselhorn Art Gallery Foundation in Sparta; Terry Waldron, president of the Misselhorn Art Gallery Foundation; and Nikki Aubuchon, vice president of the Chester Women's Club. Waldron was the club's guest speaker.
    Gwendy Gardner Photo

 
By Gwendy Garner
Contributing writer
updated: 3/29/2022 4:21 PM

Following two months of canceled meetings due to COVID precautions, the Chester Women's Club held its regular monthly meeting Thursday, March 24, at the fellowship hall of the First United Methodist Church. Hostesses were Nancy Urquhart, Pam Sheely, Sandra Starr and Gwendy Garner, Chairman.

Program Chairman Melissa Gross introduced Terry Waldron, President of the Foundation at the Misselhorn Art Gallery in Sparta. He was accompanied by Kay Bivens, gallery founder and secretary of the foundation.

Waldron spoke about the late Roscoe Misselhorn, renowned artist, in whose memory the art gallery was founded. The art gallery is housed in the restored Gulf, Mobile and Ohio depot, constructed in 1907 at 611 W. Second Street in Sparta. It holds more than 2,000 original drawings, paintings, woodcuts, cartoons, and graphic work by the late Misselhorn.

In addition, Misselhorn's legacy also includes his collection of hundreds of art books and magazines, some dating back a century, all available for research or just for browsing. The art gallery features display galleries for guest artists, a gift shop with prints, books and other items.

Misselhorn's art represents a vast cross-section of his 80-plus years, capturing historic subject matter and humble dwellings. His subject matter most often included images of trains, barns, covered bridges, coal mines and mills, riverfront life in St. Louis, as well as subjects from all over Randolph County.

"Roscoe Misselhorn has understandably been referred to as the Norman Rockwell of the Midwest," said Waldron. Original Misselhorn works are still being donated by individuals.

The Misselhorn Art Gallery is open to the public from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, Proceeds from sales at the gallery, as well as donations, support the Roscoe Misselhorn Art Scholarship program, awarded annually since 1989.

Following the program, a business meeting was conducted by Vice President Nikki Aubuchon.

• The club's annual Maundy Thursday Prayer Breakfast will be April 14, beginning at 8:30 a.m. at Reids' Harvest House. The guest speaker will be Pastor Jim Oppedal of the First United Methodist Church in Chester. Ticket reservations are $10 per person and are available until April 5 from Jane Stallman.

• The club's annual Chester High School Senior Girls Tea will be Thursday, April 21, at the Methodist fellowship hall. All CHS senior girls and their sponsors have been invited to attend. Members are asked to RSVP to Aubuchon.

• The April meeting is also the club's annual meeting. There will be a nomination and election of officers for the coming year.