History could be slipping away

By Tonya Fennell: CNJ staff writer

Like the history its members work to preserve, the High Plains Historical Foundation could soon be a thing of the past.

Harold Kilmer, president of the foundation since the 1980s, said the history group’s members are growing old, and without new blood the foundation could soon be nonexistent.

“The youngest member is my wife who is 66 years old,” Kilmer said, “and the next youngest would be me, and I’m 74.”

Founded in 1972, the High Plains Historical Foundation promotes the discovery, collection, preservation and study of history related to Curry County.

Kilmer said the foundation’s goal was to see a museum built in Clovis to house historical items, but the members’ ages and health have stalled the plans.
“We’re just too old,” he said.

The foundation once boasted 70 members, but now has about 20, Kilmer said.

The longtime Clovis resident said young people are just not interested in history.

“When I was young I didn’t care much about history,” Kilmer said. “Young people just don’t look at history.”

Ray Mondragon, chairman of a committee promoting Clovis’ centennial this year, said he hopes the anniversary will open the younger residents’ eyes.

“Hopefully this celebration will get people motivated and interested in preserving the rich history of Clovis,” Mondragon said.

How to join: Contact Harold Kilmer at 763-6361
Cost: $5 annual membership fee
Membership requirements: Anyone interested in the history of Curry County can join the foundation.
Something to do: Clovis Community College will hold a historical photo event at the Eula Mae Edwards Museum on July 26. Mondragon said all members of the High Plains Historical Foundation will be special guests.