Tuesday, December 28, 2010

New Year's Letter by Ida Buyer

The German greeting on the cover of the letter below, translated into English, reads “Cordial Congratulations to New Year.”

In January of 1892, a member of the Buyer family wrote a letter in the German language. It is difficult to decipher the writing of the first name of the author of this letter, but it was written by either Ida Buyer, born in 1854, or her daughter Ora Buyer, who was born in 1882. According to the 1880 U.S. Census for Erie County, Ohio, Ida Buyer’s parents were both born in Baden, and her husband Jerome’s parents were natives of Bayern. The letter could have been intended for relatives still residing in Germany, or it could have been an exercise is preserving the German heritage of the Buyer family.

To date the body of the 1892 letter has not been translated. If anyone reads German, perhaps you could leave us a comment and inform us of what sentiments were recorded in the New Year’s season by a Sandusky resident so long ago.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Second Annual Christmas Tree Party and Dance by the Sandusky Sangerbund

On Christmas evening in 1916, the Sandusky Sangerbund (sometimes spelled Saenger Bund) held their second annual Christmas Tree Party and Dance at Lea’s Hall at 172 East Market Street in Sandusky. In 1916, the group met on Sunday evenings at the northwest corner of Water and Columbus Avenue in Sandusky. Saenger Bunds were associations of singers, often comprised of individuals of German descent. The groups sang for dances, holiday events, and participated in competitions. On occasion the Sandusky Saenger Bund sang at funerals.

You can read more about the social life of German American residents of Sandusky in chapter five of Sandusky Then and Now, available at the Sandusky Library.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Scene of Downtown Sandusky at Christmas Time

Ernst Niebergall, a well known Sandusky photographer, took this photograph of downtown Sandusky, probably in the 1930s:

In a closer view, the Weinberger Cut Rate Drugstore can be seen at the southwest corner of Columbus Avenue and Market Street. Adolph Weinberger owned the drugstore, which was later known as Gray Drug Store. Just south of Weinberger’s Drugstore are the Montgomery Ward and J.C. Penney stores. Later J.C. Penney would have a much larger business at this location. Rosino’s Shoe Store was located south of the J.C. Penney store.

On the east side of Columbus Avenue, the following businesses can be seen: Denzer’s Books and Gifts, Textor Jeweler’s, the S. S. Kresge Company, and the H and S Modern Bakery. In the distance, the marquee of the Seitz State Theater is visible as well.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Albert Textor, Jeweler

Albert Textor was a pioneer wine manufacturer in Sandusky. According to an article in the January 23, 1920 issue of the Sandusky Register, Albert Textor came to the United States from Germany in 1849. He and his brothers William and Charles first went to Sandusky, but due to the cholera epidemic, they settled on a farm in Marblehead in Ottawa County. After about a year, Albert moved to Sandusky. On page 417 of History of Erie County, Ohio, edited by Lewis Cass Aldrich, we read that Albert Textor manufactured ten to twelve varieties of dry and sweet wines, which were shipped to all parts of the United States east of Kansas.

In 1860 Albert Textor opened a jewelry store. A listing in the 1882 Sandusky City Directory states that A. Textor was a dealer in jewelry, watches, clocks, silverware, spectacles and eye glasses at his store located at 211 Columbus Avenue, opposite the Sloane House. Later, Albert Textor’s son Alexander took over the business. Following the death of Alexander Textor in 1927, Albert Textor’s grandson Herbert M. Textor became owner and operator of the Textor Jewelry store. Pictured below are the owner and employees of the A. Textor store in Sandusky about 1890. Most likely Albert Textor is the gentleman on the far right of the photograph.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Holiday Shopping in Early Sandusky

In 1884, George W. Plummer ran a confectionery at 108 Columbus Avenue, opposite the West House. His advertising card stated that the business made fresh candies every hour.  Plummer’s sold several types of candies and a full line of Christmas novelties.

G. Pommert was a grocer who sold Heywood & Williams’ Leader Flour. Russell Heywood operated a mill in Venice, Ohio in the early 1830’s.

The Sandusky Steam Baking Company operated in Sandusky at the corner of Osborne and Carr Streets for many years. The company had several different owners through the years, and it was in business in Sandusky until about 1973.

R. J. Rife sold pianos and organs at 531 Columbus Avenue.
Visit the Sandusky Library to view these and many other historical advertising trade cards from former Sandusky businesses, which are housed in the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Cookie House

Sandusky's Cookie House has been in the news lately. After a lot of hard work, it's looking good again!

Here are a couple of views of what it looked like in the early days:

In the 1950s, in front of Sandusky High School (now Adams Junior High).

In 1952, in front of the Erie County Courthouse.

(A closer view.)

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Teacher’s Institute in Sandusky, 1845

The first Teachers’ Institute in Ohio met in Sandusky on September 2, 1845. Hewson L. Peeke wrote in his book, A Standard History of Erie County, that Ebenezer Lane, Rev. Leverett Hull, and C. B. Squires were active in securing lecturers for the Institute. The purpose of the Teachers’ Institute was for the improvement of common schools. Any Ohio teacher was invited to attend the Institute. Those who attended the Institute were not charged any fees, except for their own paper and paying board while in Sandusky. Private homes were opened to the teachers for a fee of not over $2.00 a week.

The main speakers of the Teachers’ Institute were Salem Lord, a teacher from New York State, Asa Lord, and M.F. Cowdery, who would later serve as Superintendent of Sandusky’s school system. Asa Lord was a teacher of mathematics, while M.F. Cowdery specialized in geography. Over ninety Ohio teachers attended the Teacher’s Institute. The Catalogue of the Instructors and Students of the Teachers’ Institute held in Sandusky, Ohio in 1845 was printed by W. S. Mills and Sylvester Ross. Sessions continued for two weeks, with instruction during the day, and lectures and general discussion held during the evening hours.

The names of the teachers who attended the Teachers’ Institute were listed in the Catalogue. Usually known as Rush R. Sloane, Mr. Sloane’s name was given as Richard Rush Sloane in the catalogue. Rush Sloane became well known as an abolitionist and served as Mayor of Sandusky from 1879 to 1880. Daughters of another Sandusky Mayor, Foster M. Follett, also attended the Teacher’s Institute. Helen and Sarah Follett worked along side their parents in attending to the sick during the 1849 cholera epidemic in Sandusky. Sarah and Emily Townsend were daughters of pioneer Sandusky resident, William Townsend. Sadly, Sarah Townsend and both her parents died in the cholera epidemic in 1849.

Several resolutions were adopted at the closing of the Institute. One encouraged the continuation of Teachers’ Institutes so that teachers could obtain practical instruction on subjects connected with teaching and governing schools. Another resolution demanded that the business of teaching be made a distinct profession. A significant resolution recommended “the introduction of vocal music into the Common Schools of this state, as an aid in mental and moral improvement, and an agreeable relaxation from study.” Paul D. Sanders wrote about this early support of vocal music education in Ohio in an article in the October 2001 issue of the Journal of Historical Research in Music Education. (subscription required)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Reunion of the Third Ohio Cavalry

On August 24, 1892, Veterans of the Third Ohio Cavalry met at the library building of the Ohio Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home in Sandusky (now the Ohio Veterans Home.) An article in the August 25, 1892 issue of the Sandusky Register reported that General Manning F. Force, commandant of the Home, gave a “short but eloquent” address.

Capt. E. J. Colver thanked General Force, and praised him “for his excellent management of so grand an institution, a noble monument of the great struggle for the perpetuity of the Union.”

Other speakers for the day were John M. Lemmon and P.F. Graham. The Home quartet sang the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” After the morning program about two hundred people, including Veterans and their wives and daughters, had dinner on the porch of the railroad depot, followed by a tour of the grounds of the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home.

At 2 p.m. the Veterans met at Cedar Point for a business meeting. An election of officers was held, including Capt. J.B. Luckey as president, Conrad C. Finkbeiner as treasurer, and vice presidents from each of the twelve regiments of the Third Ohio Cavalry. After the business meeting, a camp fire was held at which more addresses were given, interspersed with songs and stories.

Reunions of the Veterans of the Third Ohio Cavalry were held in Sandusky in 1880, 1889 and 1892. Former Second Lieutenant Isaac Skillman donated two ribbons from Annual Reunions of the Third Ohio Cavalry to the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center. Also available at the Sandusky Library Research Center is a microfilmed copy of Isaac Skillman’s personal recollections from his Civil War service with the Ohio Third Cavalry.

Several men who were with the Third Ohio Cavalry are buried in Sandusky’s Oakland Cemetery, including Darius E. Livermore, Elisha M. Colver, Isaac Skillman, Leonard Winkler, and Clark Center.

Update: I have recently been informed that there is a new book about Kelleys Island history (Kelleys Island 1862-1865-the Civil War, the Island Soldiers & the Island Queen), which has first-hand accounts from several soldiers who served in the Third Ohio Cavalry. It is not in the library's collections yet, but will be soon.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Letter from Jay Cooke to George R. Butler

On October 25, 1901, Jay Cooke wrote a letter to George R. Butler, owner of a manufacturing firm in Sandusky, Ohio. George R. Butler and Jay Cooke shared grandchildren, since Jay Cooke’s daughter, Sarah Cooke, married John Butler, the son of George R. Butler. In the 1901 letter, Jay Cooke wrote that he caught one hundred fifteen fish at East Sister Island, one hundred of them black bass. He instructs Mr. Butler to give two fish to Elly Kieffer, six fish to I.F. Mack, six fish to George Tollack, and to keep sixteen for himself. The letter was written on stationery from Jay Cooke’s home on Gibraltar Island in Ottawa County, Ohio
Jay Cooke, pictured above in a portrait taken by Philadelphia photographer Frederick Gudekunst, was the son of Sandusky’s first lawyer, Eleutheros Cooke. Born in Sandusky on August 10, 1821, Cooke was well known as a Civil War financier. Several photographs of the Cooke and Butler families can be viewed at Lake Erie’s Yesterdays, a collection of historic photographs from Northwestern Ohio.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Wedding of Miss Leona Flint and Harry Krawetzki

When this wedding portrait, taken by W. A. Bishop, was given to the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center, only five names were listed on the back. However, an article found in the November 17, 1921 issue of the Sandusky Register has allowed us to identify all the persons in the photograph.

Miss Leona Flint became the bride of Harry Krawetzki on Thursday, November 17, 1921. Rev. Theo. J. C. Stellhorn performed the 4 p.m. ceremony at Zion Lutheran Church. Leona wore a white satin gown with a long tulle veil, and carried a bouquet of roses. Her bridesmaids were her sister Miss Martha Flint, and the sister of the groom, Miss Viola Krawetzki. Miss Eunice Flint served as her sister’s flower girl. The groom’s attendants were Ruel Flint and William Koehler. Clara Schoewe is also in the back row in the picture. At the wedding, Clara sang “Oh Promise Me” to the accompaniment of organist Fred Wiechert. After a wedding dinner at the home of the bride’s parents, the newlyweds took a brief wedding trip, and planned to make their home on Pearl Street in Sandusky.

It is a good idea to identify the individuals in your own family photos, so that future generations will know more about their family heritage.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Hand Tinted Prints by C.W. Platt

Clayton Winfield Platt was the son of prominent Sandusky photographer A.C. Platt. Upon the death of his father in 1883, C.W. Platt took over his photographic gallery at the northeast corner of Columbus Avenue and Water Street. A.C. Platt had a fondness for the natural beauty of the Lake Erie Islands area, according to an article by Merlin D. Wolcott in volume 34 of the Inland Seas. It seems that C.W. Platt also enjoyed capturing scenes of the Lake Erie Islands area.

Several hand tinted matted prints of scenes from the Lake Erie Islands area were donated to the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center by Allene Schnaitter, granddaughter of C. W. Platt.

The print below features the shoreline of Kelleys Island.

The steamer Lakeside is seen out on Lake Erie.

The Marblehead Lighthouse is a favorite destination for visitors and local residents.
A news article in the August 18, 1903 issue of the Sandusky Evening Star reported that C.W. Platt had sold his business to his former employee, C.G. Wildenthaler, due to declining health. C. W. Platt passed away in Cleveland, Ohio on January 4, 1914. He was buried in Oberlin, Ohio.

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Acquittal, presented by the Singara Grotto

On October 22 and 23, 1923 the Singara Grotto presented The Acquittal at the Sandusky Theatre. The George M. Cohan Mystery Drama, written by Rita Weiman, was produced, staged and directed locally by George J. Lehrer. An article in the October 16, 1923 issue of the Sandusky Register reported that in the original Broadway production of The Acquittal George J. Lane was in the cast, under the stage name of Norman Lane.

The character of Madeline Winthrop was played by Maybelle Hinkey. The newspaper article stated that Miss Hinkey was “fully capable of playing this part”….which called for “wonderful repression of the emotions and great power to sustain dramatic situations.” In the play the character of Mr. Winthrop, played by Sam Cunningham was just acquitted of murder. Beryl Starr played the role of Mr. Winthrop’s secretary. Due to popular demand the performance played again on Thursday evening, so more area residents could see this popular play.
Some of the advertisements in the play’s program were interesting. The Sandusky Butter & Egg Company recommended that you could protect your health by drinking Budweiser. The C.S. Garretson Lumber Company featured an ad that said “We would like to C-U-B-A customer of ours.” The letters C-U-B-A represented the phrase see you be a. Hoffman Motor Sales sold Hupmobile vehicles at 801 Hancock Street.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Program Announcement: Early Businesses that are No Longer Around, Part 2

As our needs and desires change, and as technology advances, businesses come and go in response to these changes. Some businesses become obsolete; some just move on to different things. Join Archives Librarian Ron Davidson for a review of a few of the businesses that flourished in the past in Sandusky but are no longer here.

On Saturday, November 20, at 2:00 p.m. we will discuss retail businesses and service companies of the past, including Sandusky’s Big Store, livery companies and other transportation businesses, cigar stores, butcher shops, neighborhood saloons, and others. The program will be held in the Library Program Room. Registration is requested.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Bella Lehman, Woman Candidate for Board of Education

Even though women did not legally get the right to vote until August 26, 1920, on occasion women ran for an elected position. On Tuesday, November 2, 1909, Bella Lehman’s name appeared on the ballot as an independent candidate for the Board of Education of Sandusky City Schools.
Bella Lehman pledged to local parents that she had no partisan principles, and that her interests were in the “welfare of our children and the cause of proper education, under normal, healthful and moral conditions.”
The Sandusky Register of November 3, 1909 listed the winners of the race for School Board as Paul H. Sprow, H. H. Lockwood, Chris J. Strobel, and Lee B. Kellar.

Bella Lehman died in Hollywood, California. An obituary for Mrs. Lehman appeared in the September 22, 1938 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal. Mrs. Lehman had been active in charitable work during the years she spent in Sandusky, giving freely of her time to aid stranded Americans in Germany. She worked towards establishing the Women’s Building and Rest Room Association in Sandusky, and was a member of the Business Women’s Club and the Community Chest. After the death of her husband Henry L. Lehman, Bella moved to Europe and was connected with the U.S. Embassy in Germany. She moved to California in 1929, and lived there until the time of her death in September, 1938. Bella Lehman was survived by three children, Mrs. Jack Zinkand, Mrs. Ralph Freeman, and Henry L. Lehman, Jr., all of California.

See an earlier blog post to read more about Women’s Suffrage in Sandusky.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Dial's Concert Orchestra

Pictured below is the Dial’s Concert Orchestra.

Back: Walter Ely, Charles Trone, William Ely, Edward Senne
Front: Frank Montgomery, Roy Ely, Alex Osterman, William Dials, Charles Schrenk, John Schaub, and Charles Abele

The Dial's Concert Orchestra was made up of all male members. The orchestra played in Sandusky about 1902-1905. Not much is known about this particular group, except that several members also played with other musical groups. Frank Montgomery’s obituary, which is found in the 1929 Obituary Notebook stated that he was the last living member of the Great Western Band at the time of his death. According to a Sandusky Star Journal, Ed Senne had spent much of the summer of 1905 playing in the band and orchestra at the Lakeside resort. The Sandusky Star of June 13, 1904 reported that Walter Ely was member of the Cedar Point Band in 1904. (He had his watch stolen on the steamer Wehrle that summer!)

The Sandusky Library Archives Research Center own two copies of this photograph. One was donated by Norbert Lange, and the other by Robert Frank. If anyone has more information about the Dial’s Concert Orchestra, please leave a message in the Comments field of this blog posting.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Record of Proceedings of the Firelands Historical Society in October, 1895

On October 10, 1895, Rush R. Sloane opened the meeting of the Firelands Historical Society. Mr. Sloane was Vice President of the Society, which met in Sandusky for that particular meeting. Several persons attending the meeting had resided in the Firelands area for fifty years or more, and Judge Sloane asked those individuals to stand. The group sang a “Pioneer Song,” which had been written by General L. V. Bierce, and was sung to the tune of Old Lang Syne. Judge Sloane commented on the great work that the pioneers of the Firelands had done in recording their early history. Judge Sloane said, of the Firelands Pioneer, “I want to say to you that any one who has in his library a bound volume of the Pioneer, published by this Society, has a work of great value.”

The first meeting of the Firelands Historical Society took place in 1857. Each of the thirty-two townships of the Firelands region had chosen two individuals to gather and report the history of their township. Eleutheros Cooke and F.D. Parish were the two individuals chosen to record the history of Sandusky. Parish was also elected to be secretary for the Firelands Historical Society. In the October 10, 1895 proceedings, several individuals discussed historic items that they donated to the Firelands Historical Society. The discussions held by the members of the Firelands Historical Society were recorded in the many volumes of the Firelands Pioneer.

The key speaker at the Fall 1895 meeting of the Society was James M. Richardson, of Cleveland, who was president of the Western Reserve Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. Before he gave a patriotic address, Mr. Richardson stated that the members of the Firelands Historical Society were doing a noble work in preserving the history of the Firelands. He continued, “You are not only a product of civilization, but you are one of its most potential agents; you are architects of fate, working in the walls of time: you are a part of that full force which underlies our nation.”

Several volumes of the Firelands Pioneer are available in the Reference Services area of the Sandusky Library. These include the “Old Series,” the “New Series” and the “Third Series.” There is both a general index to this set of journals, as well as an Obituary Index. Many personal stories, portraits of individuals, chronicles of settlers, and numerous other accounts of the early pioneers of Erie and Huron Counties can be found in this important resource for local history. Artifacts from these early settlers may be viewed at both the Firelands Historical Society Museum in Norwalk, Ohio and the Follett House Museum in Sandusky, Ohio.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Dr. Daniel Tilden, Pioneer Physician

According to the June 1870 issue of the Firelands Pioneer, Daniel Tilden was born in the village of Lebanon in Grafton County, New Hampshire on August 19, 1788. He obtained his medical degree from Dartmouth College in 1812. Dr. Tilden married Nancy Drake in 1814. Dr. Tilden moved to Ohio in 1817, settling in Cook’s Corners (now known as North Monroeville). He lived briefly in Norwalk before settling in Sandusky in 1839.

The biographical sketch in the Firelands Pioneer stated that Dr. Tilden “was assiduous in his attentions to the sick, often times spending hours day and night by the bedside, observing symptoms, administering medicines himself and noting the operations and the changing condition of the patient, at the same time giving largely of cheerful encouragement. It seemed to be a labor of love with him to give his services to the very poor.” Dr. Tilden had an abhorrence of oppression and injustice and he was anti-slavery in his political convictions. It was said that his recollections of assisting the poor and enslaved race gave him great pleasure, and he often had tears of joy at the thought that he had lived to see “the colored man free.”

Dr. Tilden was president of the Ohio State Medical Society in 1856, and he served as president of the Erie County Medical Society for many years. He had also served in the State Senate of Ohio from 1828 through 1835. On August 19, 1868, Dr. Tilden celebrated his 80th birthday. His daughter, Mrs. Annette Tilden Mills, invited several of his oldest friends to celebrate with him. After a lengthy illness, Dr. Tilden died on May 7, 1870. He is buried in the family lot at Oakland Cemetery.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Letter from Zalmon Wildman to Dr. George Anderson in 1826

Born in Danbury, Connecticut, Zalmon Wildman was one of the original founders of Sandusky. He owned a lot of property in the Sandusky area, and worked with others to promote business ventures and transportation in the area now known as Erie County, Ohio. Below is a portion of a letter that Zalmon Wildman wrote to Dr. George Anderson on May 6, 1826. Mr. Wildman discusses how he spoke in Washington D.C. before the Committee on Commerce to recommend a survey of Sandusky Bay. He suggested that two hundred dollars be set aside for to cover the expenses of the survey.
According to U.S. Government reports, in July of 1826 the Corps of Engineers was given four hundred dollars in order to carry out a survey of Sandusky Bay, to “ascertain the expediency and expense of constructing piers to improve the navigation thereof…” The Sandusky Library Archives Research Center has in its map collection a Chart of the Entrance of Sandusky Bay, published by the Bureau of U.S. Topographical Engineers in 1838, which was based on the original survey of the Sandusky Bay, completed by Lieut. Campbell Graham in 1826.

Zalmon Wildman was elected as a Representative to the 24th United States Congress. He served in Congress from March 4, 1835 until his death on December 14, 1835. Zalmon Wildman’s grandson, Horatio Wildman, was a lawyer in Sandusky, and was elected Mayor of Sandusky in 1851. Horatio Wildman died in 1909, and he is buried in Sandusky’s Oakland Cemetery.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Letter from Epaphras W. Bull to Zalmon Wildman, 1811

Epaphras W. Bull, a graduate of Yale College, was a distinguished lawyer in Danbury, Connecticut. In September of 1811, Epaphras Bull, along with his wife Polly, their three small children, and an African American servant named Patience, headed from Connecticut to Danbury Township, located in what is now Ottawa County, Ohio. The Hoyt Patch family and two hired men also made the trip. The group shared a common wagon, which was led by a saddle horse. On October 5, 1811, Epaphras W. Bull wrote a letter to Zalmon Wildman, of Danbury, Connecticut. The letter was written while the Bull family was at Buffalo, New York for five days during their westward journey. He discussed seeing various acquaintances during his trip, and his plans to take a schooner from Buffalo to Sandusky, Ohio. Bull wrote, “It now seems to be conceded by the different Capts. on the Lake that Sandusky is the Best harbor the Island excepted.” He also spoke of the great expense associated with moving a family. He said that “upon my arrival at Sandusky I shall have completely got rid of the bigger part of my money.”

President James Madison appointed Epaphras W. Bull to be the first Collector of Customs of the Port of Sandusky. Mr. Bull was also the first owner of the property now known as Johnson’s Island. The Marblehead Lighthouse was situated on property that had originally belonged to Epaphras Bull. Mrs. Bull wrote in a memoir in the March 1859 issue of the Firelands Pioneer that fish and game were abundant in the Sandusky Bay area, and there were orchards of apple, peach and cherry trees. Native Americans, who sometimes camped nearby, behaved in a friendly manner. After the War of 1812 broke out, the Bull family moved to Cleveland, Ohio. Epaphras W. Bull died in Cleveland on October 6, 1812, at the age of 33. Mrs. Bull and her youngsters moved to Connecticut after the death of her husband. She lived to 93 years of age.

Visit the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center to read Mr. Bull’s original letter, or its transcription, or to read the “Firelands Reminiscences” of Mrs. Polly Bull 1859 issue of the Firelands Pioneer.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Lange Brothers' Harness Shop

In 1873, Adolph P. Lange was working as a harness maker for C. V. Wagner in Sandusky, Ohio. By 1878 Adolph P. Lange and his brother F.R. Lange were operating the Lange Brothers Harness Shop on Jackson Street. Pictured above are Adolph P. Lange (left) and his brother in law. (House numbers in Sandusky changed in 1880 and in 1915, but in 1900 the address of the Lange Brothers’ business was 122 Jackson Street.) In the early part of the twentieth century, shoes were also sold at the Lange Brothers Harness Shop. A popular line of shoes at the Lange Brothers shop was the “Wear U Well” brand. The Lange Brothers harness shop was in operation until the mid 1920’s.

Both Adolph P. Lange and F. R. Lange died in 1926. Adolph’s son, Norbert Adolph Lange, was a chemistry professor who is known for writing the classic text Handbook of Chemistry. In 1959 Dr. Norbert A. Lange and his wife, Marion Cleaveland Lange translated Dr. Von Schulenburg’s book Sandusky Einst und Jetzt into English. The title in English is Sandusky Then and Now. This valuable local history resource provides information about Sandusky’s earliest settlers of German descent.
Dr. Norbert A. and Marion Cleaveland Lange were also the generous donors of the Lange Trust, which provides for “The promotion of cultural and educational enterprises in the City of Sandusky, Ohio, and the adjacent area within Erie County, Ohio.”

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Ernest Siggens: Star Athlete, Mayor of Sandusky

Ernest V. Siggens, who was known as Ernie, was born in Sandusky on May 7, 1897 to George and Emily Siggens. He was a star of the Sandusky High School football teams of 1914, 1915, and 1916. From 1923 to 1925, Ernie played in the backfield for the Sandusky Maroons. (He is seen at the far right of the front row in the photo below, which was taken in 1923.)

Other teams which Ernie Siggens played for included the Parks Junior Basketball Team, who were the area champions in the 1913-1914 season, and the Sandusky Elks baseball team.
During World War One Ernie Siggens served in the United States Army from May to December, 1918. For several years, Ernie was the proprietor of the Siggens Electric Service store on Wayne Street in Sandusky. On January 1, 1932, Mr. Siggens was elected Mayor of Sandusky. He remained in that office January of 1934. On April 12, 1935, Ernest V. Siggens died at Good Samaritan Hospital following a brief illness. He was only age 37 at the time of his death. Mr. Siggens was survived by his wife, the former Mildred Atwood, a daughter, Mary Jane Siggens, and his mother, Mrs. Emily Siggens. Burial was in Oakland Cemetery. A touching tribute to Ernie Siggens appeared in the April 12, 1935 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Program Announcement: Brown Bag Lunch Series -- Places That Aren't Here Anymore

Bring your lunch and join us in the Library Program Room (Terrace Level) as we explore topics in local history.

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 20 - 12:00-1:00 p.m. TOPIC: Places That Aren’t Here Anymore. We’ll take a nostalgic look at places that aren’t here anymore. As our community evolves and grows, so, too, do the familiar sites around town. Some of the places may have changed locations, experienced a renovation or change in appearance, and some are simply no longer in existence. Museum Administrator Maggie Marconi will be the presenter.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

German Beneficial Union, No. 723

The November 1948 issue of the Union Reporter featured a brief history of the German Beneficial Union, No. 723. Sometimes known as the Greater Beneficial Union, the German Beneficial Union was a fraternal organization which aided Americans of German descent. The organization often offered savings programs and insurance policies to its members, besides promoting German cultural events and community involvement.
Earl F. Fernau was the secretary of District No. 723, German Beneficial Union in 1948. In the article Mr. Fernau listed the various meeting places of the G.B.U., District 723, in Sandusky which included Fuchs Hall, the Odd Fellows Hall, and St. John’s Hall. In September of 1948, the new home of District No. 723, German Beneficial Union was located at the northwest corner of East Adams and Hancock Streets in Sandusky.

Pictured below are the officers of the German Beneficial Union, District 723 in 1948.
Front row: Joseph Michel, President, William Stehle, Secretary Earl Fernau, Treasurer, Marcel Kieffer. Back row: Mrs. Joseph Michel, Mrs. William Stehle, Michael Hert, Clayton Biglin, Mrs. Raymond Grundler, and Mrs. Michael Hert.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Program Announcement: Early Businesses That Are No Longer Around

As our needs and desires change, and as technology advances, businesses come and go in response to these changes. Some businesses become obsolete; some just move on to different things. Join Archives Librarian Ron Davidson for a review of a few of the businesses that flourished in the past in Sandusky but are no longer here.

Part One: Industry. On Saturday, October 16, at 2:00 p.m. we will discuss factories and industrial businesses from the 19th and early 20th Centuries that are no longer here, with views of images and documents from the Library’s Archival Collections. Learn about businesses, such as the Sandusky Tool Company, the Jackson Underwear Factory, breweries, the ice industry, and others.