Whitson Properties Monument
Whitson Properties is based in Findlay, Ohio, but the city means far more than a mailing address to the commercial real estate development company.
Findlay is where George and Shirlee Whitson raised their five children and where they have both been involved in countless civic organizations.
It was civic pride that motivated the Whitsons to build the handsome monument that greets travelers to town as they exit I-75 at the U.S. 224 interchange.
The "Welcome To Flag City, U.S.A." brick wall was built in 1999 to coincide with the 25th anniversary of Findlay being declared by congressional resolution as the only official Flag City in the United States.
Steps lead up to both sides of the wall, and the area in front is well-landscaped. A large American Flag flies proudly above the wall, with the entire area well-lit at night. The pillars at each end of the wall bear a plaque - one noting the fact of Findlay's designation as Flag City in 1974, the other memorializing the Whitsons' granddaughters, Katherine "Katie" Ann Whitson and Tess Louise Whitson, who died in childhood.
The Whitson Flag City Monument quickly became a source of community pride, so much so that in 2002 the Cat's Meow Village's line of wooden collectibles was expanded to include a replica of the wall.
More than 200 people came out to the monument's dedication in 1999, including then-Mayor John Stozich, Chamber of Commerce representatives and members of the Chamber's Heritage Committee.