Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Gainsborough Photographers

From 1931 until 1982, Gainsborough Photographers did business at 223 West Washington Street, on the street level of the Odd Fellows Temple in downtown Sandusky.

Though this close up view is not very clear, you can see that at Gainsborough’s you could have portraits taken, or purchase a camera.

Samuel Barkan opened the Gainsborough photographic studio in Sandusky in October of 1931. There was a studio in Lorain as well. An opening day special included twelve 4 x 6 inch pictures in a folder, and a 7 x 9 inch color picture in an easel frame, all for $7.50.

In the 1940s, Sam Barkan resided on Fifth Street in Sandusky with his wife Ann, and their two daughters. During World War II, there was a patriotic display at the Gainsborough Studio during Sandusky’s fifth war loan drive. Every customer who purchased a $25 war bond received a picture of one of the panels of the Honor Board that was on display in Washington Park.

This undated advertisement shows the services available at Gainsborough’s, which included family and commercial photography, sales of photographic equipment and supplies, camera repair, and one day film finishing, as well as reprints and enlargements.

When customers picked up their developed film, the prints were inside a paper album that stated “Send a snapshot with every letter.”

In the 1950s, Sam Barkan wrote a newspaper column entitled “The Camera Column.” This column appeared in the May 12, 1954 issue of the Sandusky Register Star News.

This artistic picture of a championship bowling team was created by Gainsborough Photographers.

Sam Barkan’s name was associated with the Gainsborough Photography studio through the 1960s. In the 1969 Sandusky City Directory, he was listed as the president of Gainsborough, Inc. and Mrs. Ann Barkan was the secretary-treasurer. From 1970 through 1977, George A. Hassenplug was the proprietor of Gainsborough Photographers. Rick Abbott operated Gainsborough Photographers from 1978 until the studio closed in October of 1982. By 1970 Sam and Ann Barkan had moved to Columbus, Ohio. Mr. Sam Barkan passed away at the age of 67 on September 6, 1972. Ann Barkan died in 2006. Both Mr. and Mrs. Barkan were buried at Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus. During their years in Sandusky, Mr. and Mrs. Barkan were active members of the Oheb Shalom Temple.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Postcards from Lakeside

Lakeside had its beginnings in 1873, when land was cleared for the purpose of creating an area where religious meetings could take place. Soon Lakeside became involved in the Chautauqua Movement, an adult educational movement that provided cultural and educational events for the community. Several vintage postcards from Lakeside are housed in the historical postcard collection of the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center. With the popularity of passenger steamers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Sandusky residents were able to visit Lakeside,  just a short distance away from Sandusky when travelling by water. As automobiles became popular, and especially after the construction of the Sandusky Bay Bridge, local residents could drive to Lakeside as well. 

Hoover Auditorium is still the site of concerts during the summer season of the Lakeside Association:

This vintage postcard shows the hotel, boathouse, and a portion of the dock at Lakeside:

The pavilion at Lakeside offers a lovely view of Lake Erie on warm summer nights:

Though the exact location was not provided, “Flirtation Walk” at Lakeside is the subject of this postcard:


Visit the SanduskyLibrary to find books on the history of Lakeside and other nearby areas. Lakeside continues the tradition of providing entertainment, lectures, and spiritual opportunities for its hundreds of visitors during the summer months.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Hoover and Woodward, Wholesale Grocers

 In 1880, Frederick E. Hoover and William W. Woodward started a wholesale grocery business on Water Street in Sandusky, Ohio. Frederick Hoover had moved to Sandusky from Sidney, Ohio. He was a Civil War veteran, having served in Company D of the 20th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, under Manning Force, who was the first commandant of the Ohio Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Home in Erie County, Ohio, now the Ohio Veterans Home.

William W. Woodward lived in Dayton, Ohio, before he moved to Sandusky. He too was a Civil War veteran. W.W. Woodward served as an officer in several different units during the war. He was 2nd Lieutenant in the 1st Ohio Infantry; Captain in the 44th Ohio infantry; Captain in the 8th Ohio Cavalry; and he was a Colonel in the 166th U.S.C.T.

Mr. Hoover and Mr. Woodward married sisters, both daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Elijah Zinn from Shelby County, Ohio. Mrs. Jennie Zinn Woodward died in the West House in Sandusky, when she was only forty one years old. She left behind two young children. After Frederick Hoover’s death in 1894, his widow Margaret Zinn Hoover assisted W.W. Woodward in the wholesale grocery business. Mr. Woodward married Florence Hadley in 1898.  In 1910, W.W. Woodward went into a partnership with M.J. Bender, with Mr. Bender serving as the president of the company, and Mr. Woodward serving as vice-president. The Bender Woodward wholesale grocery store was much larger than the original building of the Hoover Woodward store.

 W.W. Woodward died on April 5, 1913. He was buried in the family lot at Oakland Cemetery. Mr. Woodward's daughter Cora married another Sandusky businessman, Gustav Jarecki. Frederick E. Hoover, in his estate, left an amount totaling several thousand dollars to the College of Wooster to be used towards a dormitory for women and the education of men.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Terminal Inn, on the Downtown Waterfront

In May of 1903 the Terminal Inn opened in downtown Sandusky at the foot of Columbus Avenue, close to the passenger steamer docks and railroad tracks. The Inn featured a cigar store, café, and a large waiting area for visitors to Sandusky. The proprietors of the Terminal Inn were Adam Stoll and William Finley. You can see visitors peering over the balcony of the Terminal Inn in the close up view below.

In the early hours on the morning on June 21, 1904, a massive fire destroyed almost an entire block of Sandusky’s waterfront, north of Railroad Street (now Shoreline Drive) from the Jackson Street slip to the Columbus Avenue slip. Over $150,000 worth of property was destroyed (about $4 million in today's value), including the Terminal Inn, Booth Fish Company, and a building owned by the Gilcher and Schuck Lumber Company. Detailed accounts of the fire appeared in the Sandusky Register and the Sandusky Star, now available on microfilm at the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center. Though the Terminal Inn was in business in Sandusky for a short time, a plate depicting the Terminal Inn and Sandusky’s waterfront is now housed in the collections of the Follett House Museum. Mrs. Marjorie Owings, longtime staff member of Sandusky Library, donated the plate to the museum.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Limestone Quarrying Has Been Important to Sandusky and Erie County for Generations

Hewson Peeke wrote in his book A Standard History of Erie County, Ohio, about the limestone underlying the ground in Sandusky and the Lake Erie Islands region. In Sandusky, the upper portion of stone is corniferous limestone, which is bluish in color and found in thin strata. The stone quarried at Marblehead and Kelleys Island is lower in the ground than the corniferous limestone, and lighter in hue. 

Ellie Damm wrote in her book Treasure by the Bay that many limestone mansions were built in Sandusky between 1834 and 1872. The stone for most of these buildings was quarried near the building sites. It is thought that the stone for Grace Episcopal Church and the Oran Follett House was quarried in the area of the triangular park at the corner of Wayne Street, Huron Avenue, and East Adams Street. 

At one time, Sandusky and the Lake Erie Islands region were dotted with quarries, many which were filled in and used as building sites. There were lime kilns in Marblehead and in Sandusky in the 1800s.

Some individuals ran stone quarries. In the 1880s, Ira Davis established a quarry along Sycamore Line.

Charles Schoepfle had a quarry on the west of Hancock Street, south of McKelvey Street in the 1890s. Here is a receipt for items purchased by Jay Bogert from Charles Schoepfle.

In 1893  Michael Wagner established the Wagner Quarries, now a part of Lehigh Hanson. This post card created by Ernst Niebergall shows Wagner Quarry employees in 1926, at Plant Number 2.
Below is an aerial photograph of the Wagner Quarry in Perkins Township, taken by Thomas Root in 1950; it is still operating today.

 Limestone and crushed stone quarried and processed from Erie and Ottawa Counties continue to provide needed materials for the construction of roads, highways, businesses, and homes in our area and beyond.  This area is fortunate to have so many natural resources, including the limestone bedrock as well as a natural harbor from which the stone can be transported to where it is needed.  To read more about the geology of Erie County, see A Standard History of Erie County, Ohio by Hewson L. Peeke and History of Erie County, Ohio, edited by Lewis Cass Aldrich, both available at Sandusky Library. 

Sunday, June 14, 2015

David S. Curr, Practical Sail and Awning Maker

Two receipts from David S. Curr are housed in the business collections of the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center. In the spring of 1908, James Emrich paid 75 cents for putting up an awning (about $20 in today's money).

In December of 1908, John A. Feick paid $28.35 to Mr. Curr for a winter covering for his yacht named the Elizabeth.

David S. Curr was born in Dundee, Scotland in 1858. He came to the United States from Scotland in 1881. On the passenger list of the Devonia, accessed at FamilySearch.org,  he listed his occupation as sailmaker. His name is the twelfth name on the list below.

From about 1902 to 1910+, David S. Curr made and repaired sails and awnings for area residents. His sail loft was in the 500 block of Water Street, above a feed and grain store. Mr. Curr passed away on September 6, 1910, at the age of 52. He was survived by his wife Rosetta, and sons Charles and Frederick. Rev. H.V. Givler officiated at his funeral services, and burial was at Oakland Cemetery.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Annual Session of United Commercial Travelers, Grand Council of Ohio in 1906

The seventeenth annual session of the Grand Council of Ohio, United Commercial Travelers, was held in Sandusky, Ohio from June 7 to June 9, 1906. The United Commercial Travelers was organized in Columbus, Ohio in 1888 by a small group of traveling salesmen. The purpose of the group was to provide insurance and other benefits for its members. The Sandusky Council, No. 278 of the United Commercial Travelers was active for many years.  An article in the June 8, 1906 issue of the Sandusky Register reported that three thousand traveling men arrived in Sandusky and took the city “by storm.  Big bands accompanied the visitors, most of whom arrived by train. Many of the commercial travelers stayed at the Hotel Breakers at Cedar Point.

On June 7, a band contest was held at Cedar Point, followed by a boat ride on a steamer. The Cedar Point Band gave a concert for the commercial travelers in the evening. On June 8, the day opened with an invocation by Rev. A.P. Higley, welcome address by Sandusky Mayor John J. Molter, and an address by William Homer Reinhart, who was the chairman of the general executive committee of the Sandusky Council of the U.C.T.

Several more sessions of the United Commercial Travelers were held during the annual meeting. On Friday evening, June 8, a dance and a progressive dinner were held at the Coliseum at Cedar Point. On Saturday, Van Doren’s Band from Toledo gave a concert in Washington Park. A huge parade commenced at 1 p.m. in downtown Sandusky. At 3:30 p.m., the Columbus and Akron United Commercial Travelers played a baseball game, with $25 awarded to the winning team. 

The annual session of the United Commercial Travelers, Grand Council of Ohio concluded with a grand concert at Cedar Point.  The Sandusky Register of June 9, 1906 stated that the U.C.T. convention in Sandusky was “without doubt the largest in point of attendance and best in every way in history of organization.” Inside the back cover of the souvenir program from the U.C.T. convention is a list of the members of the Sandusky Council, No. 278 of the U.C.T.

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Aerial View of Dutch Lane and Cove

Photographer and pilot Thomas Root took this aerial view of Dutch Lane and the surrounding area on June 7, 1959.  You can still see the railroad bridge in the upper right hand portion of the photo. The 1896 Erie County Atlas also shows the bridge on the map, as they lead to the B and O Railroad docks on Sandusky’s waterfront. The same tracks and bridge were in use by a number of different railways leading into downtown Sandusky since 1853, and remained in use until the late 1970s or early 1980s.

Click here to see this area as it appears on Google maps. The Sandusky Library Archives Research Center’s Tom Root Aerial Photograph Collection features several area photographs taken by Tom Root between 1949 and 2000.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Holzaepfel Kodaks Baseball Team

In the 1910s, the Holzaepfel store sponsored a baseball team known as the Kodaks. When you look closely at the players, the name Kodaks is printed on the center of their uniform tops, and the large H on their uniform stands for Holzaepfel.

In another team picture of the Holzaepfel Kodaks, the name of the teams appears in cursive writing on the players’ uniforms.

 The Holzaepfel Brothers store was an official processor of pictures taken with Kodak film.

From 1908 through the 1950s, the Holzaepfel Brothers store was at 157 Columbus Avenue. In the early years, the store was listed as a business that sold novelties, but by the 1920s the store was known for selling sporting goods, and of course for processing Kodak film. Though you cannot read the name Holzaepfel Brothers, the business was in the building where the words Sporting Goods appear, on the west side of Columbus Avenue in this picture taken in 1955.

From the 1960s through the 1980s, the Holzaepfel Brothers store was at the northeast corner of Columbus Avenue and Market Street. Many area athletes bought their letter sweaters at the Holzaepfel Brothers store.

Monday, June 01, 2015

Manhattan Clothing Store

Around the turn of the twentieth century Samuel Kaplan and Henry Isaacs were the proprietors of the Manhattan Clothing Emporium at the northeast corner of Market and Jackson Streets in downtown Sandusky. An article in the July 31, 1901 issue of the Sandusky Star, stated that the store was having a red tag sale. Both the original price and the sale price were on the tag, so that shoppers could see exactly how much they would be saving if they purchased the item. The proprietors of the Manhattan, which sold apparel for men and boys, brought out new stock every time the seasons changed. 

This baseball team was sponsored by the Manhattan store in the 1910s. They were known as the Manhattans, of course.

Here is an ad for the Manhattan store which appeared in the September 15, 1916 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal.

Samuel Kaplan was born in Lithuania and emigrated to the U.S. as a young man. He had no formal education, but he taught  himself how to read, and write, to speak English, and became familiar with American business practices. After Henry Isaacs retired in 1930, Kaplan ran the Manhattan Clothing Store on his own until his death in 1937, when the store was run by Alston V. Erckman and Leonard Sauer. You can see the sign for the Manhattan store in the picture below, taken during the Northwest Territory Celebration in April of 1938.

In 1953, Mr. Sauer retired and Alston V. Erckman became the sole proprietor of the Manhattan Clothing Store. Mr. Erckman was honored in 1955 for his fifty years of service with the Manhattan store. He had started as an errand boy around 1905. Eventually he learned all aspects of the business and became president of the company. After Mr. Erckman’s death in 1962, Ray Barman and Bud Dodge bought the business. Ray Barman became the sole owner in 1976. 

By 1983 the Manhattan store ceased operations in Sandusky, though it kept a branch store in Tiffin for a time. Below is a picture of the Manhattan store taken shortly after its going out of business sale.  The Manhattan was located at 238 Columbus Avenue in Sandusky during its last twenty years of operation.


The Manhattan store served men and boys in the Sandusky area for over 80 years. Do you have any memories of shopping at the Manhattan?