A bit of local Civil War history has come to life once again.
It's Camp Week at the 103d Ohio Volunteer Infantry in Sheffield Lake. It's a tradition going back to 1866, when the men of the 103rd decided to hold an annual summer reunion to renew their friendships.
Early reunions were one and two-day affairs with only the veterans present. The location varied from year to year, with the most popular spot being Randall's Grove in Lorain, near the site of the present Overlook Apartments on East Erie Avenue (US 6).
Eventually the wives and families of the men were invited, and the reunions evolved into weeklong camps.
As the Civil War veterans began to pass away, the surviving soldiers realized they needed to plan for the future. Thus an organization known as the Sons and Daughters of the 103rd was formed in the late 1800's to take over the responsibilities for the reunion.
Four acres of lakefront property was purchased in Sheffield Lake in 1907 for a permanent reunion site, with the first reunion at that location held in 1908. At first, the grounds were a military-style camp with tents. But to make the families more comfortable, permanent structures were added in subsequent years. These included barracks, a mess hall, a dance hall, and cottages.
It is this handsome group of white buildings that are still visible from US 6. Descendants of the 103rd O.V.I. live in the cottages year-round.
Although Camp Week doesn't usually get a lot of coverage in the media, back in 1933, the encampment still made it into the newspaper headlines. The coverage for the 1933 event is below. (Click on it so you can read it.)