Saturday, August 18, 2018

Sandusky Has Loved Parades

With Sandusky's Bicentennial Parade soon to become part of history, it's a good time to share the stories of other parades in our history.

Pictured above is a scene from downtown Sandusky when Company B of the Sixth Ohio Regiment returned from the Spanish American War in May of 1899. Here is another view of the parade:

Parades have been held in Sandusky since the early days of the city. According to History of Erie County, edited by Lewis Cass Aldrich, (D. Mason and Co., 1889), Washington Square was originally appropriated as a “public ground, parade and walk.” In the 1840s, members of the local militia drilled on Washington Square, accompanied by fife and drums. On Saint Patrick’s Day in 1844, a joint parade was sponsored by the Sons of the Emerald Isle and Washington Total Abstinence Society, "in celebration of the principles of temperance."

The Sandusky Library Archives Research Center has pictures of several parades in Sandusky's history. On April 30, 1938, thousands of people celebrated the 150th anniversary of the passage of the Northwest Ordinance of 1787, which established the territory that included the future state of Ohio.  In the picture below, parade participants are seen proceeding north on Columbus Avenue.

At that time a Walgreen drugstore was located in the Cooke Block at the northeast corner of Columbus Avenue and East Market Street, and the S.S. Kresge store was on the southeast corner. 

A parade held in conjunction with the Buckeye League Band and Orchestra Festival took place in Sandusky on May 6, 1938. A band marched down Jackson Street; the Hotel Rieger is to the east and the Plaza Theater to the west.

A double feature was playing at the Plaza that day: I Was a Spy and Accidents Will Happen, starring future U.S. President Ronald Reagan. In 1938, our grandparents would probably never have guessed that Reagan would one day be the President.

Many local residents will recall when Gray Drugs was a busy store in downtown Sandusky, where the parking garage is now located. The Armed Forces Day parade was held on May 16, 1959.

Some of you may have attended this parade, which honored Jackie Mayer, Miss America of 1963.

Photographer Thomas Root took an aerial view of the Miss America Homecoming Parade held in November 1962. Providence Hospital was under construction at this time, seen on the right side of the picture above. 

Visit the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center to learn more about the history of Sandusky and Erie County. You may also browse through our historical photograph collection online.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

The Early Days of the Boy with the Boot

In 1895 Sandusky hotel owner Voltaire Scott made improvements to the small park opposite his hotel, then located at the southwest corner of Water and Wayne Streets.  Mr. Scott paid for the park’s improvements himself, under the supervision of the city park superintendent. A statue of the Boy with the Boot was the focal point of the Scott’s Park. The statue had been cast by the J.W. Fiske ironworks in New York City. 

Other statues in the park included two dolphins that sprayed water and two females known as “Maids of the Mist.”  A drinking fountain at the park’s entrance was topped by a statue of a lady with an urn.

Scott’s Park was a favorite spot for picture taking by visitors to Sandusky as well as local residents.

The tornado of 1924 severely damaged Scott’s Park. In the 1930s, Scott Park was leveled, and the Boy with the Boot was moved to a fountain in Washington Park. After being vandalized in the early 1990s, the original Boy with the Boot was moved to Sandusky’s City Building, and a bronze replica was placed in the fountain. 

Here is a picture of the Boy with the Boot fountain in 1963:

The lady with the urn statue is now housed at the Follett House Museum, after having been repaired from the damage it incurred during the tornado:

You can read much more and Sandusky’s Boy with the Boot in Article 58 of From the Widow’s Walk, by Helen Hansen and Virginia Steinemann, as well as an article on the Sandusky Register website by Special Collections Librarian Ron Davidson.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Mabel Normand Bathing Suits Were Sold in Sandusky

In the 1910s, the Scheuer Brothers store in Sandusky sold Mabel Normand bathing suits, named for a popular silent film star. When she wore bathing suits in films such as Water Nymph and Diving Girl, some people thought the suits were racy. The Scheuer Brothers Company was located in the Graefe Building on East Market Street.

The advertisement above for the Scheuer Brothers appeared in the December 1912 issue of the Fram. In 1919, William S. Frankel acquired the interests of A. J. Scheuer, and the store became known as the Scheuer-Frankel Company. Around 1929, William S. Frankel, Sr. became the sole owner of the business, and it was known as the William S. Frankel Company. After William S. Frankel, Sr. passed away in 1949, his son William S. Frankel took over the business. Frankel’s was a popular department store for area residents until the mid-1960s.

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Judge Jay H. Payne, First Municipal Judge of Ann Arbor

Jay Howard Payne was born in 1897, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Jay A. Payne. He was the president of the Sandusky High School graduating class of 1915. Jay attended the University of Michigan along with several other young men from Sandusky. He is the individual on the far right of the first row, in this picture that once belonged to Norbert A. Lange:

After graduating from the University of Michigan’s School of Business Administration in 1921, he continued his studies there and earned a law degree in 1926. He practiced law for several years in Ann Arbor. After having been elected as the first municipal judge of Ann Arbor, Michigan, Judge Payne eventually became Probate Judge of Washtenaw County, Michigan. In 1951, he was elected to serve as one of the Vice Presidents of the National Council of Juvenile Court Judges of America. 

Below is a picture of Judge Jay H. Payne, with his young nephew. He appears to be dressed in Knights of Columbus regalia.

In 1955, Judge Payne attended the Centennial Reunion of Sandusky High School graduates, a reunion which was open to all graduates of SHS. 

Sadly, Judge Jay H. Payne died on April 17, 1956. He was survived by his wife and two sisters. Members of the Sandusky High School class of 1915 met at the Hotel Rieger at the end of May in 1956 at a dinner meeting that had been planned by Judge Payne before his untimely death. The meeting was dedicated to the judge's memory. His sisters and their husbands also attended the dinner.

This cutlery box was made by Jay H. Payne when he was attending school in the Sandusky City School system. The wooden box is now in the historical collections of the Follett House Museum.

Monday, August 06, 2018

Edward R. Moos, Wine Dealer

The former home and business of Edward R. Moos is featured on the wine label pictured above. Edward R. Moos was a pioneer wine merchant in Sandusky, having taken over the business from his father, Adam Moos, in 1876. A listing in the 1882 Sandusky City Directory states that Edward R. Moos was a grower of and wholesale dealer in pure native wines. The 1905 Sanborn Map shows the Moos residence at what was then 508 Hayes Avenue, which is also where Mr. Moos had his wine cellar and press room. After 1915, the address became 1408 Hayes Avenue.

According to the History of Erie County, Ohio, ed. by Lewis Cass Aldrich, (D. Mason and Co., 1889), the Edward R. Moos Winery produced thirty thousand gallons of red and white dry wines each year. The limestone wine cellar was twenty-six by sixty-four feet. Mr. Moos was a traveling salesman for his wine, covering a territory that spanned from Detroit to New York. 

Here is a label from a Concord Wine:

The original home of Edward R. Moos featured a tower on the northernmost part of the house and leaded glass windows decorated with ornamental grapes in the living room, which faced Hayes Avenue. This image of the house was published in the book Art Work of Huron and Erie Counties, (W.H. Parish, 1894).

Edward R. Moos retired from the wine business in 1918. He passed away on April 30, 1944 at the age of 88. He was survived by three daughters, eight grandchildren, and six great grandchildren. His wife, the former Antoinette Schnaitter, preceded him in death in 1936. The building that once was the home and business of Edward R. Moos still stands, and is now an apartment building.

Friday, August 03, 2018

The O-P Craft Company

The O-P Craft Company was organized in November, 1929, with these officers: Earle F. Opie, president and general manager; Leland Spore, vice-president; Charles E. Frohman, secretary; and Albert L. Opie, treasurer. In the early years, the company was located in the 600 block of Hancock Street, and made school supplies. The company logo contained the letters O and P, and looked like a person holding up a hand.

In the 1932 Sandusky City Directory, Earle F. Opie was also listed as the educational manager of the American Crayon Company. By 1935 the O-P Craft Company had moved to 161 E. Water Street. In 1946, the company announced plans to move to a new building in the 400 block of Warren Street. 

Catalog No. 57 of the O-P Craft Company featured products that designed for consumers to decorate themselves, such as boxes, frames, buttons, relish trays, bookends and other decorative items. The basswood hinged lid boxes were a popular item. Pictured below are some hinged boxes from a 1976 O-P Craft catalog.

In this undated advertisement from The N.O.W. Scene, Strickfaden Nursery had a craft shop that carried decoupage craft items with the raw materials supplied by O-P Craft Company.

Bill Opie, the son of Albert L. Opie, eventually took over the business. He expanded the company into plastics. In the early 1980s, O-P Craft Co. became known as Laffer Industries. Laffer Industries later became FormPac. In 1996, FormPac was acquired by Tuscarora, Inc. In 2003, Tuscarora closed its Sandusky plant.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Dr. Elwood Stanley

Elwood Stanley was born in Columbiana County, Ohio in 1823, to Joshua and Rachael Stanley. When Elwood was quite young, he was orphaned. He pursued medical studies at the Cleveland Medical College, graduating in 1849. He had hoped to begin a medical practice in Canton, Ohio that year, but was called to Sandusky to aid in the cholera epidemic in the summer of 1849.  An article in the July 21, 1949 issue of the Sandusky Register Star News stated that Dr. Stanley seemed to never sleep during the epidemic. He walked from house to house, to minister to the sick and console grieving family members. An unidentified elderly African American man was often at his side, as he took care of the many people afflicted with the dreadful disease. 

Dr. Stanley was an active member of the Erie County Medical Society. In 1887 he wrote an article about “The Sanitary Condition of Sandusky Before and After the Completion of the Water-Works and Sewerage System” for a publication of the Ohio State Sanitary Association.

Dr. Stanley had seen first-hand how unsanitary water in Sandusky was a major factor in that city’s cholera epidemics.  

From 1881 to 1885, Dr. Stanley served as Erie County Coroner. On January 4, 1902, Dr. Elwood Stanley died after an extended illness. He was the oldest physician in the city of Sandusky at the time of his death. The Erie County Medical Society adopted resolutions regarding the death of Dr. Elwood Stanley.  Dr. Stanley was survived by his wife Lydia, and an adopted son, Frank Stanley. He was buried at Oakland Cemetery. Dr. Stanley’s  name is listed on the historical marker at the Cholera Cemetery in Sandusky, which honors several physicians and city leaders who played an important part in aiding the cholera victims during the cholera epidemic of 1849.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Excursion of Kilbourne and Jacobs Employees to Cedar Point

Each summer between 1903 and 1911, the employees of the Kilbourne and Jacobs Manufacturing Company in Worthington, Ohio were treated to a day at Cedar Point. A banner bearing the company’s  name was placed on a Pennsylvania Railroad car. 

An article from the July 22, 1905 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal provides with details about the festive event.

James Russell Kilbourne provided each employee with two tickets to Cedar Point. Four separate trains from the Pennsylvania Railroad brought the visitors from Columbus to Sandusky. Once in downtown Sandusky, the employees then boarded steamers to travel to Cedar Point.

Mr. Kilbourne and his party traveled in a private train car. When he arrived in town, he ran into a former military buddy from the Ohio Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home. The retired soldier wanted to chat, but Mr. Kilbourne said, “I’m too busy to think or talk politics. I want to see that all my people have a good time here.” Besides visiting the beach and other attractions at Cedar Point, the group took part in several contests, including a smoking contest and another one in which they had to guess the number of seeds in a watermelon. On the day of the visit of the three thousand employees of Kilbourne and Jacobs to Cedar Point, the Knights of Columbus brought in a group of one thousand visitors to the Point.

Of course the surname Kilbourne is very familiar to Sandusky residents. The great grandfather of James Russell Kilbourne, was an early surveyor of the lands in Ohio. James Kilbourne (1770-1850) was instrumental in the founding of Sandusky and Worthington. Hector Kilbourne, son of the elder James Kilbourne, was responsible for laying out the plat of Sandusky in the shape of the Masonic emblem.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Getting to Know Horatio Wildman, Former Mayor of Sandusky

Horatio Wildman was born in 1828 in Fairfield County, Connecticut, to Frederick Seymour Wildman, and his wife the former Julia Ann Starr. Horatio’s grandfather was Zalmon Wildman, one of the proprietors of the city of Sandusky. When addressing the Firelands Historical Society at its fall meeting on October 10, 1895, Horatio Wildman recalled his grandfather’s connection to the city of Sandusky. He said about Sandusky, that “Zalmon Wildman said the Almighty meant this location for a town. As a natural location it is unsurpassed by any in Northern Ohio.”  

Horatio Wildman was a graduate of Yale University. After studying law in Connecticut, he moved to Sandusky in 1848. By 1851, Mr. Wildman was the Mayor of Sandusky. In the 1870s, he served as the city solicitor. 

In the 1860 Sandusky City Directory listed Horatio Wildman and his wife Emma (sometimes listed as Emily) as boarding at the Townsend House, along with their two young sons Horatio and Augustus. Soon a third son, Seymour was born.

Eventually the family moved to a home at the northwest corner of Washington and Lawrence Streets in Sandusky. 

After suffering serious health issues, Horatio Wildman died on May 16, 1909. An obituary appeared in the Obituary Record of the Graduates of Yale University.

A lengthy obituary also appeared in the Sandusky Register of May 20, 1909. The article reported that the funeral was held at the family residence at the corner of Lawrence and Washington Streets, with the Ref. W. Ashton Thompson of Grace Church officiating. Members of the Erie County Bar Association attended as a body. Honorary pallbearers included Judge Thomas M. Sloane, E.B. King, Malcom Kelly, U.T. Curran, C. Webb Sadler, T.B. Hoxey, and Hewson L. Peeke. John T. Beecher, an honorary pallbearer, could not be present. Active pallbearers were George C. Beis, W.J. Feisinger, C.H. Cramer and R.B. Fisher. There were numerous floral tributes. A circular wreath was given by the Bar Association. The B and O Railway Office sent a star and crescent tribute. Horatio Wildman was buried in Block 57 of Sandusky’s Oakland Cemetery. Mrs. Wildman passed away in 1915, and she too is buried at Oakland.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Lake Erie Island Pictures by Harley Hoffman

In the “Neighboring Communities” collection of the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center are several photographs taken by Harley Hoffman, a commercial photographer who had a studio in Castalia, Ohio in the 1950s. Above is a picture of ferry boat passengers approaching Middle Bass Island. You can see the Lonz Winery on the shore. 

The picture below was taken at the Put-in-Bay dock. A sun bather can be seen soaking up the sun on the pier.

Vintage vehicles are visible along the streets of Kelleys Island in this picture of the business district. Businesses pictured include Matso’s Place and the Island Market.

Mr. Hoffman snapped this picture of someone standing by the sign at Inscription Rock along the lakefront at Kelleys Island.

The community oven at Kelleys Island allowed residents to bake bread in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

These men are enjoying an afternoon of fishing at Kelleys Island.

Harley W. Hoffman passed away in 1986. His obituary, which appeared in the May 28, 1986 issue of the Sandusky Register, stated that he had been a salesman for the Mr. Wiggs Department Store. In the decade of the 1950s, Mr. Hoffman is credited with dozens of photographs that appeared in the Sandusky Register Star News. Because of Harley Hoffman’s photographs, we have a better understanding of what everyday life was like in a by-gone era.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Vintage Views of Cedar Point Beach

The Sandusky Library Archives Research Center is fortunate to have in its collections several photographs and post cards from Cedar Point. Above is a scene featuring the boardwalk along the Cedar Point Beach in the early twentieth century. Below are three individuals watching the boats on Lake Erie as the waves roll in.

In the summer of 1914, Tony Jannus thrilled crowds by offering daily flights in a "hydroplane." The brief air flights were offered for a fee of fifty cents per person. (About $8 in today's money -- not bad!)

During the 1930s, several amusement rides were located very close to the beach.

Visit the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center to learn more about the rich history of Sandusky and Erie County. Historical photographs may be viewed online at

Sunday, July 08, 2018

Annual Outing of Booth Fisheries Employees

Mrs. H.C. Lehman donated this undated picture postcard of employees of the Booth Fisheries on their annual outing. The manager of Booth Fisheries, J.J. Schrank, is the fourth individual on the left in the back row. The men are all lined up at the pier, waiting for the trip to begin aboard the Major Wilcox. While we are not positive which year this picture was taken, an article in the July 2, 1917 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal provides us with a vivid description of the annual outing from 1917. The headline of the article stated that the outing was a great success.

Over fifty employees of the Booth Fisheries, and some of their friends, left aboard the company docks, in spite of threatening weather. Louis Beverick served as master of ceremonies, and “Bumps” Biehl was the chef. The group was served turtle soup and fried fish. After dinner, the group returned to Sandusky to unload equipment, and they returned to the Major Wilcox for a boat ride around the Lake Erie Island, while another round of refreshments was served. If you would like to read the article in its entirety, visit the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center, to view the Sandusky Star Jounal of July 2, 1917, now on microfilm.