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Officials gather ideas for Fallen Timbers site

Squinting at a map, Matt Rothlisberger said it would be disappointing if planners for the Fallen Timbers Battlefield National Park did much to disturb a woods that covers part of the site.

“The timbers was one of the most interesting parts of the battle - the fallen timbers [that soldiers and warriors] encountered,” Mr. Rothlisberger, a Hancock County resident, said last night.

Others at the open house at the Maumee Branch Library shared a similar view that little should be changed to alter the environment of the site, except for creating some type of interpretive center.

About 150 people turned out for afternoon and evening open houses to offer comments about what the park should offer, while Tedd Swartz quietly sang tunes that evoked area history.

The battle of Fallen Timbers in August, 1794, paved the way for Ohio statehood in 1803.

The park service is open to any reasonable idea, said Sandra J. Washington, a regional planning chief for the National Park Service. It is looking for suggestions for the park southeast of Monclova and Jerome roads and at Fort Miami on River Road in Maumee.

“It really is a clean slate,” she said. “We don't know what we are going to do. But we will preserve the resources and provide visitor services.”

Several members of the American Indian Intertribal Association suggested ways a center could be sensitive to Native American spirituality, Ms. Washington said.

Completed forms attendees turned in will be analyzed and planners will draft a range of alternatives that incorporate what residents want.

In late August or September, a second meeting will be offered to residents to respond to the proposals. Planners will take that information and go back to make revisions. They will make a final presentation for public comment in the spring of 2003.

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