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Jean Hopewell

From Bloomingpedia

Jean Hopewell was the original owner of the Betty Jean Shop on the northeast corner of the Courthouse Square at 100 W. 6th Street. It was in that location for over 50 years.

She is credited with beginning the holiday tradition of lighing the Courthouse Square during the holiday season. From a letter that Charlotte Zeitlow wrote to the Herald Times in 2003:

"In the haphazard recording of history of a community, sometimes significant players get lost in the shuffle. One of these is Jean Hopewell, the "Jean" of the Betty-Jean Shop, which was a mainstay on the northeast corner of the Courthouse Square for years and years.
Jean Hopewell was the original impetus for holiday lighting of the Courthouse Square.
In the fall of 1981, she approached the Monroe County commissioners, urging us to light the courthouse and the square, as the Owen County Square was lighted when she was a young girl. The Central Business Association responded with the commissioners and organized the lighting of the courthouse and the courthouse lawn. Jean donated a considerable sum of her own money to have electrical outlets installed around the base of the Courthouse dome. Lighting was relatively simple the first year and more elaborate the next. The third year the courthouse was dark, closed for renovation.
Since the courthouse renovation was completed in late 1984 and the Fountain Square renovation was completed in the next few years the lighting of the Courthouse has expanded to become the Canopy of Lights we all love. But, for the record, we all owe a debt of gratitude to the woman who got it going 20 years ago, Jean Hopewell."