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Keeping history alive: The largest known collection of turpentine industry artifacts is tucked into the backyard of a Holley home.

| Wendy Victora Rudman

At the end of a dead-end road in Holley, a small community just north of Navarre, the largest known collection of artifacts from the turpentine industry is kept in a tidy clay-colored building behind Raymond Melvin’s home.

Melvin, whose dad, granddads and great-granddads all trace their roots to the industry, started his collection when he was 22. More than 50 years later, it includes more than 1,000 items ranging from tools and scales to cut trees and cups to hold the sap.

Raymond Melvin, who has the largest known collection of artifacts from the turpentine industry, poses with some of the tools dating back to the early 1900s. Photo by Wendy Victoria Rudman

 

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