The Omena Historical Society’s mission is to share the unique history and culture of Omena. The Society’s home is the Putnam-Cloud Tower House Museum, located in the heart of Omena

About the Omena Historical Society

The Omena Historical Society is dedicated to helping preserve the history of our area for visitors, residents and future generations. Our quest to do that began informally in the mid-1980s with a group of friends discussing the history of the area. From those discussions evolved a formal effort to preserve the history of Omena and in1994 the Omena Historical Society was formed.

Now, more than two decades later, OHS is headquartered in the historic, centuries-old Putnam-Cloud Tower House Museum located in the heart of the village.

Omena Historical Society Board

Keith Disselkoen (email)
Vice PresidentMarsha Buehler
Recording SecretaryDennis Armbruster
TreasurerMary Ziegeler
Nancy Enyart
William Loveless
Gayle Madison
Kathy Miller
Laurie Remter
Mary Hallett Stanton
Sally Shapiro
Ty Wessel
Meg Wilkes
Ed Oberndorf – Honorary Trustee

Volunteer with OHS

The Putnam-Cloud Tower House Museum needs your help. Volunteers help with staffing the museum on weekends in the summer, with chores and maintenance and with fund-raising. If you are interested, please email us at

Whether you can give money, time, or money AND time, your contribution is valued and appreciated.

OHS Annual Meeting Minutes

Omena Historical Society Annual Meeting
August 13, 2017, Shady Trails Camp, Omena, Michigan

Call to Order: President Keith Disselkoen called the meeting to order at 4:20 p.m. with 50 members present. Sign up sheets are available.

Opening Remarks: President Disselkoen thanked all members for their continuing support and Shady Trails Camp for use of the facilities. He recognized and thanked outgoing members John Ray and Helen Putnam Bradley for their six years of service.

Accomplishments: President Disselkoen noted the OHS is appreciative of all who contributed to the process of getting Omena placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The project was mainly carried forward by Marsha Buehler. The OHS Putnam Cloud Tower house building was painted this spring all around the outside. The new heritage garden was installed this spring, and includes plants that date back to the 1800s. In the past year, an Endowment Fund has been established and funded. President Disselkoen also noted the books and publications for sale, and the completion of the Timelines thanks to Laurie Remter. Next year’s projects include review of the by-laws, the Mayor’s race, and the 175th anniversary of the Omena Presbyterian Church.

Treasurer’s Report: Treasurer Mary Ziegeler distributed her written report dated August 13, 2017. She summarized the report and noted the OHS is in good financial shape with total assets of $75,095 including an Endowment Fund balance of $57,816. Moved by Debby Disch, seconded by Mary Tonneberger, to accept the report as presented. Approved.

Last Year’s Minutes: Printed minutes not available. Moved by Debby Disch, seconded by Jim Miller, to dispense with the reading of the minutes. Approved. Moved by Cathy Stephenson, seconded by Caroline Oberndorf, to accept the minutes from 2016 annual meeting. Approved.

Membership Report: Helen Bradley noted there are 116 Caretaker members, donating $9,182 this year.

Election of Board Members: John Ray and Helen Putnam Bradley are leaving the board after 6 years. The Nominating Committee presented for election to their first term: Nancy Enyart, Bill Loveless, Sally Shapiro, and Meg Wilkes. Nominated for a second two year term are: Mary Hallett Stanton, Mary Ziegeler, and Ty Wessell. Caroline Oberndorf moved, Cathy Stephenson seconded, to close the nominations and elect the members as presented. Approved.

Comments by President Disselkoen: Keith Disselkoen noted the passing of Larry Bensley this past year, and the desire of the OHS to memorialize his significant contributions. Decisions to be made soon.

Special Program: Helen Putnam Bradley introduced both Mary Helen Ray and Cathy Stephenson who each gave their personal memories of spending their summers in Omena as youngsters. Their stories were very informative and well received.

Adjournment: Jim Miller moved, Brian Shapiro seconded, to adjourn the meeting at 5:25 p.m. Approved.

Respectfully submitted by Dennis Armbruster, Secretary