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Currier & Ives Exhibition at Ross Museum Celebrates Harness Racing

August 20, 2006

More than 100 original Currier & Ives lithographs as well as memorabilia from past Little Brown Jug races will be exhibited at Ohio Wesleyan's Richard M. Ross Museum beginning August 24.

"The History of Harness Racing," a rare collection of 19th century harness racing scenes by "America's Printmakers," Currier & Ives, is a traveling exhibit featuring a selection from the museum's main collection. It is sponsored through grants from: the Patricia S. Winder Fund; the CTW Foundation, Inc.; the Thomas W. and Florence T. Murphy Fund of the New York Community Trust, the State of New York; and the Agriculture and New York State Horse Breeding Development Fund. The project is administered by The Harness Racing Museum & Hall of Fame in Goshen, NY.

Included in the exhibit will be Currier & Ives prints on loan from the museum in Goshen, the Delaware County Fair, Nationwide Insurance and former Bun's restaurant owner George Hoffman, along with racing silks from the Brown Jug restaurant and a circa 1870 sulky.

The exhibit will run through September 29, Ross Museum First Assistant Tammy Wallace said. A wine tasting and reception sponsored by Main Street Delaware will be held on August 25 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the museum, 60 South Sandusky Street.

2006 Harness Racing Hall of Fame inductee Tom Thomson, Little Brown Jug Society president, Delaware County Fair director of racing and former publisher of, the Delaware Gazette will be on hand at the reception, as will Gallo Blue Chip, harness racing's all-time leading career money maker.

Gallo Blue Chip, who earned more than $4 million dollars in his career as a pacer, has become a harness racing ambassador of sorts, traveling to fairs, tracks and other events around the country. He'll greet fans in the museum's parking lot, in a corral provided by Cashman's Drive Thru Feed & Horse Equipment Outlet. After his Ross Museum appearance, Gallo Blue Chip will be on display on the Delaware County Fairgrounds September 20 and 21, as part of Delaware County Fair and Little Brown Jug festivities.

Wallace says she expects lots of museum visitors during the exhibit, particularly during fair week, September 16 - 23. The museum usually is closed on Saturdays but it will be open Saturday, September 16, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., she said. "I would assume that the week of the fair we're going to be pretty darn busy," she said.

Tickets to Main Street's wine tasting and reception are $25 and are on sale at Pat's Records, Compact Discs and Tapes, 31 N. Sandusky St., and all Delaware County Bank branches.

Normal museum hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information call 740-368-3606 or e-mail ramuseum@owu.edu.