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Vermilion Ohio, A Good Place to Live

Any philosophy that can be put in a nutshell belongs there.-Branch Rickey......If it takes a lot of words to say what you have in mind, give it more thought.-Dennis Roth.....I don't think it is so much the actual bath that most cats dislike; I think it's the fact that they have to spend a good part of the day putting their hair back in place.-Debbie Peterson......This Jacob Klaasse and Sandra Mirabel perform a Cuban piece entitled Los Monecos.......rnt..........

July 26, 2014 -  South Shore Shopping Center and Grand St.

River & Lagoon

SHOPTALK: On the desk at the museum this week is a relatively old (2008) photograph I took of Vermilion’s harbor (next to the French Restaurant) when I first got my Nikon camera. I was trying it out.

At the time I was also intrigued by various Photoshop techniques, and this is one of things I did with the photo. It’s not pretty, but I still like the technique. If only the coloring had been different.

I was going through all of my old pix last week. I stored them in a special briefcase with individual sleeves for CDs and DVDs. It’s a collection of all my pix, audio and video recordings from about the year 2000. I haven’t gone through everything yet – but it’s an interesting task.

On my home desk is a pic of the Vermilion Lagoon Club House several years prior to the building of all the homes therein.

I really have to wonder if any of the folks in the photo realized how spectacular the subdivision would someday become.

I also see some type of structure above and behind the clubhouse. Perhaps it is a boat launch or a large swing? Someone will have to tell me – because I don’t know.

PRACTICE THE “GOLDEN RULE”: I want to make a brief comment about the social media: Please don’t believe everything you read therein.

Just because someone writes / says it doesn’t necessarily follow that you are getting the whole picture. In short, objective parties do not generally submit Facebook and Twitter observations. Ergo, it ain’t news. It is rumor – biased and subjective commentary. And rumor can be terribly destructive.

Try reading a paper, listening to the radio, and / or watching television news before you jump off the deep end and accuse and / or harass someone. Practice the “Golden Rule”.

NEW ACQUISTIONS & IMPROVEMENTS: The following pix are also on our Facebook page. But for those who don’t do Facebook…

The storage barn behind the museum is near completion due to the efforts of board member George Spreng along with our foster son, Jon Parks, and his neighbor. We have just a few more things to do – like calking and painting – and it’ll look quite nice.

Next is a view of the parlor in the museum apartment. What’s new here is the antique end table. Vermilionite Bev Zimmer, who also donated the beautiful sofa, donated it to the museum. Very stylish.

Below is a vintage ice clamp / carrier. They were use to carry blocks of ice – when folks still used such things. I’ve not seen a block of ice in ages.

This item was donated to the museum by Vermilionites Miriam and Al Smith.

Cool man!

A MAJOR BLUNDER MADE MINOR: Have you ever heard the expression, “Can’t see the forest for the trees.”? It perfectly describes me in relation to my newest book “Sketches of Yesteryear in Vermilion, Ohio”.

I worked so hard putting everything together for this book that I misspelled the word yesteryear on the cover. Thanks to Karen Cornelius, the editor of the Vermilion Photojournal, who brought it to my attention rather quickly I was able to do something about it.

And thanks to my wife and Adobe Photoshop I was able to correct the mistake so that it is almost undetectable. But it was a major blunder on my part.

I designed the cover and was very happy with my work. I looked at it numerous times and didn’t see the error. I sent it to the publisher, and approved it for publication. I don’t know if they noticed it or not. And now? Well, I realize that my stupidity knows no bounds.

I hate when that happens. (Ignorance is bliss.)

Anyway, the book is here - amended title and all. And Like my “Now & Then in Vermilion, Ohio” book this is also a pretty-looking thing. If no one read it they could just set it on a table and look at the cover.

The book is on sale for $20 (plus tax); and also like my last one is only available at the museum. I hope these go fast because I’ve got a great idea for another one.

AUDIO-VIDEO: Recorded interviews currently available at the museum are: Nancy Tarrant Emery; William R. Tarrant; Connie Dropko; Jim Snell; Dawn Full; Marie Tansey; Jim Hart; Roger Watkins; John Tuttle; Bill Seith; Melba Gorbach; Arlyss Schwensen; Marilyn VanDenBossche and several others. Some of the interviews are on a single DVD.

In the near future we will also have some audio-only recordings available. (i.e. Nettie Welch, Rita Howley Summers, Hank Fischer, etc.) I can say that though these are not what one might call comprehensive recordings most are historically informative.

The DVD’s are $5 – and only available at the museum.

MUSUEM SCHEDULE: Beginning now the museum will be open six days a week from 11 AM to 3 PM. We will be closed on Sundays and Holidays. We are located at 727 Grand Street in Vermilion across the street from Vermilion's historic E&R Church. The museum is open Monday thru Saturday from 11 AM to 3 PM. A small admission donation of $3 (for adults) is requested. Children accompanied with an adult will be admitted free. For Special Tours call: 440-967-4555.

We are closed on Sundays and holidays.

Private tours during those hours and during the evening can be arranged by calling the museum, or stopping in to see us.

FIVE-OH-ONE-CEE-THREE: The museum is a 501(c)(3) organization. Consequently, all donations and memberships for the museum are tax deductible. This is retroactive to November of 2011.

Memberships for the VERMILION NEWS PRINT SHOP MUSEUM are always available. Funds generated will go toward the aforementioned renovations and maintenance of the shop.

A single membership for an adult is $15 a year.
A couple membership is $25 a year.
A student membership is $5.
And a lifetime membership is $100.

If you would like to become a member the VNPSM you can send a check or money order to:

Vermilion Print Shop Museum
727 Grand Street
Vermilion, Ohio 44089


LIKE US ON FACEBOOK:Take the time to visit us on Facebook. Click on the badge below and stop in. We'll keep adding pix as we go along. If you're in the area come on in. I try to be there in the a.m. most everyday. If you see a Chevy Silverado in the drive with the plate "MRCOOKR" stop by and see what's cooking.

Vermilion News Print Shop Museum

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Rod Bondourant

From Camptonville

ROD BONDOURANT: I talked about Rod in last week’s edition of “VV”. Rod is a resident of Lester Pelton’s California hometown Camptonville. He is also ¼ of their historical society.

I took this pic of Rod standing aside Lester’s burial place in Maple Grove Cemetery with my cheapie cell phone. Cell phones aren’t my thing (I don’t care for any type of phones) and it took a good deal of time for me to figure out how to send this pic to my computer so I could use it online.

I sent a copy to two other members (Stephanie Skorney and Robert Mumm) of the Camptonville Historical Society to make sure that Rod got a copy. He’s travelling across the U.S. on his way back to California and is taking his time. So I don’t know where he is at the moment.

Rod, Robert, and Stephanie are our (Vermilion’s) Camptonville contacts. Geo and I are hoping that they will help find us a Pelton Wheel that we can display here.

Back of Town Hall


USED: I used a rendition of this scene in my "Now & Then" book. Here, however, the “now” pic is new – taken just a few days ago. The area has changed a great deal since it was built in 1935 by E.E. Koontz.

Crystal Gardens

"...this is certainly a very extraordinary portrait of Vermilion, Ohio in the yesteryear"

CRYSTAL GARDENS C. 1929: The photo that accompanies this week’s essay is not a good one. It is an example what happens to a photo negative that has been stored incorrectly for many years. But no matter. While it may not be a “good” photograph, it is, beyond the shadow of any doubt, a rare one. Taken some time in either the late 1920s or very early 1930s it is one of the first pictures I’ve ever seen of the exterior of the Crystal Gardens dance hall that once stood at the front of Vermilion’s now long departed Crystal Beach Amusement Park when, as some might say, “the joint was really jumping”. It is really extraordinary.

This photo is part of a much larger – wide-angle – photograph of the front of the park (inset). It has been cropped (trimmed) to facilitate a closer view of the dance hall, part of the park (i.e. the Rocket Ship ride), and the folks crossing the street. Essentially, all that’s missing from the closer view is the refreshment stand / restaurant that once sat near the park entrance.

For the benefit of persons who may not remember, or those unfamiliar with the locale of the park: It was located on the north side of East Liberty Avenue / Route #6 across from what we currently know as the South Shore Shopping Center. The dance hall was located right about where Key Bank currently stands. The amusement park itself was located on the property behind the bank (Crystal Shores Apartments). And the beautiful Blanchat / Calvert home once occupied the land where the BP station sits today (2014).

What first caught my eye when I came across this portrait are the people standing at the doors and windows of the great concert hall. I’d never before seen the windows of the hall wide open. Nor had I ever seen the doorway on the southwesterly part of the hall (pictured) open. The only entrances that I’d ever seen used during my lifetime were the main entrance – at the very front of the structure – and the back entrance from the amusement park. Obviously the hall was not air-conditioned. Consequently, having the windows and doors wide-open makes a good deal of sense. Nonetheless I’d never seen so many folks inside the hall during the day in the summer. I would assume that they were skaters socializing and enjoying some fresh air.

I dated the photograph by the clothing of the family crossing the street in the foreground. Dad is wearing a very cool straw hat (they cost about $1.29 in the 20s and 30s), and his sister-in-law (the lady on the left) is wearing a Cloche-style (helmet-like) hat (cost about $24.00). The ladies’ hairstyles were short and the hemlines on the dresses were on the rise. But the fashion of the day was still a bit “boyish” (i.e. there was little waistline to the dresses).

I am unable to explain the reason that the mother and daughter in the photo are wearing long outer coats. It would seem unseemly (pun intended) for anyone to be dressed so formally at an amusement park no matter what time of year it might have been. Perhaps they had been there to listen to music or to attend some other function at Crystal Gardens. What I do know is that they were crossing the road to the parking lot that eventually became the South Shore Shopping Center. In those days – in fact right up to the late 1950s – that parking lot was an empty field that, at certain times, was also a very muddy place. [Though there are some folks who may disagree, when the shopping center was built it was a great improvement to that part of the town.]

As has been said, this is certainly a very extraordinary portrait of Vermilion, Ohio in the yesteryear. When one looks at this particular place today some may find it hard to believe that Crystal Gardens and the Crystal Beach Amusement Park ever existed at all. Whether this is a good portrait or not doesn’t really matter. That it exists, has been recovered, and now allows folks an opportunity to see for themselves what they missed is more than enough.

The Pelton wheel=

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AGAIN - ANOTHER NEW (NOW OLD) THING: Initially I said that "This will not take the place of the "Macabre" stuff all the time - but will supplement whilst I search for more macabre stories to tell." But methinks that it's carved out a niche for itself and the "Macabre stuff" with have to find another.

So stay tuned...

Vol. X – NO.13 – September 6, 1906.


The bond of County treasurer Goodsite was approved by the commissioners Saturday and entered upon his second term.

Flora Galoway began suit for divorce Saturday in common pleas court against her husband Simeon Galloway on the grounds of non-support. The parties reside at West Huron.

J.L. Zesigner has begun suit in the court of common pleas against Geo Smith of Vermilion to recover #3000 on a promissory note. The note it is claimed, was given on March 27th and was due June 9th being secured by the deposit of $5,000 worth of stock in the Duplex Stamping Co. of Vermilion, as collateral security.

Jacob Bonn took judgement against John Barton and his wife on a cognovit [promissory) note given in 1894 for $181.14 with interest at 6 percent from January 1895. The total amount is the judgement was $347,38.


Elmer John Jacob Schnell, 22, Sandusky, decorator, and Miss Anna Mae bell, 22, Sandusky.

John W. Miller, 30, Magnolia, insurance agent, and Miss Clara Slyker, 24, Huron.

Harry Emmett Rose, traveling salesman, and Miss Grace Ethel Jefferson, school teacher, Berlin Hts.


Will Cross Bats With the Lake Shore

Don’t’ fail to be at Shadduck’s Lake Park Friday afternoon and see the “men behind the counters” and the “lightning manipulators” cross bats. ‘Tis said that his Honor Mayor Williams and Mr. John Knott will umpire. The veteran batteries F.J. Roth, pitcher and Landlord Holden of the Hotel Maudelton who will corrall [sic] the sphere back of the bat. Will appear at their best. Lewis Englebry will carry water and take care of the bats.

Do you remember the ball game last year? Well this game Friday will be the BEST YOU EVER SAW. So don’t miss it. Remember the date, Friday, Sept 7th. Game called at 1:59 p.m. sharp. Be on hand.


On last Saturday evening at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Wakefield about forty-five guests assembled to witness the marriage of Mr. Arthur John Copeland and Miss Fanny Wright. Mr. Copeland is the foreman in the Construction room of the “Brass Works’, and Miss Wright came all the way from Birmingham, England, having arrived only two weeks ago.

At exactly 6 o’clock Mr. Copeland and Miss Wright, accompanied by Mr. Albert Hofrichter, as best man, and Miss Alice Copeland, a sister of the bridegroom, as bridesmaid, presented themselves in the elegantly lighted parlor, where Rev. J.W. H. Brown spoke the words that made them husband and wife, using the full ritualistic service, with the ring ceremony. The bride wore a handsome white silk gown and carried a bouquet of bride’s roses.

After the congratulations were given the party sat down to an elegant repast, and while this was being eaten, the “friends” on the outside made music (?) with tin horns and clapboards, and such, much to the delight of all, especially the bride to whom such music was indeed a novelty, having never heard anything like it in “Merrie” England.

The wedding presents were numerous and valuable, and Mr. and Mrs. Copeland launched out upon the sea of matrimony amidst the congratulations and best wishes of all.

The guests from a distance were: Mr. and Mrs. Patterson, Atlanta, Georgia. Mrs. Noble, Montgomery, Alabama. Mr. and Mrs. Matthews, Cleveland, O. Ralph Matthews, Cleveland, O. Mr. and Mrs. Poley, Wilkesbarre [sic], Pa. Mrs. Copeland and three daughters, mother and sisters of the bridegroom from Birmingham, England. The Wakefields of Vermilion, relatives of the bride.


At Shadduck’s Lake Park Sunday Sept. 9 Baseball: Vermilion vs. Olmstead Falls, game at 2 p.m. Balloon Ascension and Parachute drop by Prof. R.G Reese under the management of Prof. R.J. Hawkins at 4:00 p.m. Dancing and other amusements. Admission to Park 10c.


Some miscreant either in revenge or in mischief entered A.J. Mattison’s barn sometime since Saturday evening and cut a double harness badly completely ruining it. While the harness was not new it was serviceable and answered the purpose of a new one. We believe no punishment is too severe for anyone who destroys property.


O.K. Todd who has been abroad since the middle of June returned to New York on Friday last, coming from Havre on the new Friend liner “La Provence”, in less than six days. He reports having a delightful summer but was glad to again be on American soil. He expects to spend some time in the east before returning home.

[VV. Ed. Note: Mr. Todd really was a world traveler – and a good thing. He died in 1931 at the tender age of 43. I’m 70 and I’ve never traveled as he did.]


As a meeting of the committee having the matter in charge, held at the bank Tuesday evening the deed for the Brass Works property was turned over to the F. Wakefield Brass Co, the contract that the plant should be constructed and in operation in not less than 60 days having been fulfilled. The people are very much pleased by the way Mr. Wakefield has kept his agreement and with the prospects before the company.


It is currently reported that the government engineers are making a survey of Beaver Creek at Oak Point.

This report is denied however this morning.


Vermilion has a model factory in that of the F.W. Wakefield Brass Co.’s plant. The building is nearly fireproof being built of brick with metal partitions and roof and cement floor. At the front of the building are commodious offices next is the packing and shipping room. Next in order is the finishing room where the work is lacquered which preserves the finish. In another room the polish is put on the brass work by rapidly revolving wheels, and an well equipped plating plant is next to this room where the copper finish is put on.

The main room is a scene of activity here is the motive power, a 27hp. Double cylinder gasoline engine, and the machinery for making the parts of the chandaliers [sic] and fixtures. One machine makes screws and 9 9ther small brass fittings doing it automatically requiring scarcely any attention. There are lathes, drills and thread cutting machines and some of the fixtures are also assembled here.

In the west end of the building is the foundry where the castings are made. The heat is supplied by crude oil making a very intense fire. This completes a brief description of the plant.

Of the work done, which by the way is first class in every respect, we can say but little. The plant manufacture gas, electric and combination gas and electric, standard universal fittings and have a large number of beautiful designs in three finishes bright and dull brass and copper. For chandeliers there are five main stems, from which a number of designs can be made.

Mr. Wakefield’s patent is based on a body on which fittings can be attached or removed as desired. The chandeliers as well as the other lighting devices are artistically designed and are not only useful but ornamental wherever they may be placed.

The trade is taking kindly to the company’s goods and prospects seem bright.

There are no 23 employed in the building and there is room for quite an increase in capacity in the building.


Mr. A.J. Kneisel and Lady spent Monday at Cedar Point.

Will Parsons was home from the lakes Tuesday night.

Capt. Henry Walper was home yesterday.

Geo. Andrews spent yesterday at Cedar Point.

Mr. and Mrs. J.I. Howell spend Monday at Sandusky.

Mr. and Mrs. J.W. Leidheiser spend Sunday at Cedar Point.

Mrs. G.E. Whitmore entertained her brother from Muncie, Ind. last week.

Miss Alice Kane is visiting friends at Columbus and taking in State Fair.

O.F. Hatch, our Division St. gateman on the L.S. & M. S., is quite ill.

$1.00 to Cleveland and return via the Lake Shore Electric Ry. Wednesday Sept. 12.

A large number of Vermilionites are spending a day or so at Cedar Point this week. It is Carnival week at the popular resort.

The game between the Brass Workers and the Fisherman last Saturday resulted in a victory for the former. Score 13 to 11.

Rev. Geo. E. Merrill, wife and daughter and Mrs. Mary Childs and son Earl spent Monday at North Ridgeville with the family of Rev. J. A. Kaley.

[VV. Ed. Note: Mary Childs was extremely active in Vermilion’s First Congregational Church. Years later a churchwomen’s group was named the “Mary Child’s Class”. When I was a lad her son Earl was the head cashier at the Erie County Bank.]

Labor Day was observed in Vermilion to considerable extent. In the afternoon most of the business places were closed at Shadduck’s Park the Vermilions defeated the Lorains with a score of 13 to 1, which rather disheartened the latter.

The concrete sewer constricted for the town by John N. Englebry appears to be a very satisfactory piece of work and now some are wondering why it wasn’t thought of before. The concrete work is 100 feet long and of large diameter and may solve or be the means of solving some of the sewer problems which may be brought up in the future.

Mr. and Mrs. H.H. Patton are entertaining the former’s mother and sister Mrs. M. Patton and Miss Elva of Leavenworth, Kan.

Mr. and Mrs. John Delker were entertained at the home of Sheriff Hoffmann at Sandusky Wednesday and the afternoon at Cedar Point.

S.T. Sheldon has moved to the Bacon house in the Hollow.

Little Norma Alheit was injured one day last week by a fall from a porch while with her parents on a visit at Amherst. Her right arm was dislocated at the shoulder and elbow.

Vermilion barbers have fixed the following prices.

Shave – 10c – Neck shave 5c extra
Haircut – 25c
Shampoo – 25c
Massage – 25c
Singe - 25c
Tonic - 10c
Beard Trimmed – 10c
Toilet Water – 5c


Mark Twain’s New Home.

Mark Twain has bought the old Noah Sherwood home in the secluded village of West Redding, Conn., and will reconstruct the house into a beautiful mansion, says a New Haven dispatch to the New York World. The house will occupy the crest of an elevation, which commands a view in every direction. It will be constructed of stone chiefly and will cost $30,000 it is said. There are 110 acres of ground about the house, which will be improved on an extensive scale.


Mrs. Geo. Aston spent last week in Cleveland caring for her daughter, Miss Emma, who has the typhoid fever.

Miss Edna Baboc [sic] of Rochester is back teaching our school this fall.


Mrs. Darby is on the sick list.

Our schools begin next Monday. Miss Welz in the Primary room while Mr. Waltman has the upper school.

Mr. and Mrs. Early took in Cedar Point last Sunday.

New Goods will soon make their appearance in the stores here.


Mrs. James Baumhardt, accompanied by Chas Fowl of Elyria, and M. J. Trinter of Vermilion left Sunday night for Columbus, where they will attend the State fair.

Geo. Baird is reported quite ill.

Miss Peal Joyce is on the sick list.


Pearl Roscoe


ROSCOE: His first name, of all things, was Pearl. He was the only child of Caselton and Helen Rachel Forster Roscoe. Though his father was by trade a carpenter / millwright he also kept a farm in North Milan, Ohio where Pearl was born on November 9, 1869. He received his education in Milan’s school, afterward going to work at Norwalk for the Laning Printing Company.

From about the 1870s to 1900 Laning published books or all sorts and did a good deal of printing for several legal firms. Consequently, it was an ideal place for a young man to learn the printing trade.

Sometime during the 1880s Roscoe went to work in the news business – taking a position with the Oberlin News Tribune. By the late 19th century he had secured a position as printing foreman with the Lorain Times-Herald.

The year 1901 was a banner year for the young man. It was the year he married a pretty school teacher from Milan named Elizabeth “Bessie” Bottomley (b.1879 in Minnesota) – and also the year the couple purchased a fledgling weekly newspaper and print shop in a place called Vermilion, Ohio.

Initially the business was located on the second floor in what folks called the “Wells Building”. It was located on the east side of Vermilion’s Grand Street north of the tracks and south of Liberty Avenue. (That building no longer exists.)

Early in their marriage the newlyweds rode bicycles to and from Lorain to operate the business. But by November of 1904 the newspaper, print shop and the young couple, had a brand new home in a building built by Roscoe’s father just a few doors south of the railroad on the same side of Grand Street.

At the beginning of their publishing career in Vermilion Roscoe and Bessie encountered some heated opposition to the changes they proposed. Despite those objections they persisted in promoting expansion and improvement of the public library system, schools, their church, and the town in general..

And due, in part to their, insistence and persistence, both the newspaper and the town prospered during their lifetimes. On the 24th day of May in 1906 the couple welcomed a little daughter, they named Ella Gwendolyn, into their lives. A little over a year later Pearl’s mother died (06/27/07). She was 71.

Shortly thereafter (1908) his father came to live with the family in their print shop apartment. A new addition was added to the back of the building just in time to welcome another little girl – Alice Margaret - to the family on December 1 of 1911. Caselton died there on the 16th of May 1918.

As has been noted Editor Roscoe was always active in community affairs – working with local businessmen to acquire new industry – and also serving as a deacon in Vermilion’s First Congregational Church and holding offices in the local chapter of the Royal Arch Masons. On occasion he even added his voice to their choir.

As a young man he became very interested in photography and throughout his life captured many pictures of and in Milan, Lorain, and Vermilion. Many were used for penny postcards. Those of newsworthy events he published in his week newspaper. He also did many passport photographs; in all his black and white film and glass negative photographs number in the thousands. And just a few years prior to his death he also dabbled in some color photography taking numerous color slides of some places and faces in Vermilion, O.

His wife Bessie, co-publisher and friend, passed into the hands of God in early January (the 7th) of 1946 at the young age of 66. Roscoe followed her on April 17th at the tender age of 76. The newspaper and print shop continued their work under the direction of son-in-law William Basil Tarrant and daughter Ella.

EPILOGUE: Some folks inherit money; some property; some talent. My legacy is the song of my parents and grandparent’s lives. Words etched on tombstones mark where lifeless forms now lie – not where they were, where they are now, nor where they’ll be tomorrow.

"The township was named after the principle river
emptying into the lake through its territory..."

THE FIRE-LANDS: I found the following information re: the early inhabitants of our area to be extremely informative. Methinks you will also.

I am getting better at transcribing these passages so there are fewer mistakes. But I like to read as I go - and sometimes I fill in the blanks. So tread carefully this trail through yesteryear.

The following series will take thee to the townships south of Vermilion. Methinks you'll find this history quite fascinating.



[VV. Ed. Note: I think I made a mistake here (What's new?). I believe I skipped a page. I'll have to use it next week. So this is out of sequence.]

…first election was held at John B. Fleman's (or Flemmond's) on the east bank of the river, and about two miles from the lake. Jabez Wright and David Abbott were elected justices of the peace; F. W. Fowler, constable, and Almon Ruggles, recorder.


The legislature passed, February 7, 1809, an act authorizing the erection of Huron county—embracing all of the Fire-lands. Upon the 29th of January 1811, the legislature appointed as commissioners to fix the seat of the county: E. Quinby, of Trumbull county, Stephen Clark, of Geauga, and Solomon Griswold, of Ashtabula. They were ordered to make returns or reports, of the action they had taken, to the court of common pleas, to be held in Cuyahoga county, and, in pursuance to this order, they, upon 'June 15, 1811, reported that they had fixed upon Avery township for the seat of justice. The exact location was at Camp Avery, about a mile below the site of Milan village. The first court was held at this point, or at the residence of David Abbott, in the fall of 1815 (in which year the county was organized). Considerable dissatisfaction was expressed by those who attended this court, because there was no good water procurable, and it was suggested by somebody, familiar with the country, that there was a fine ridge running through Norwalk township, and that, in all probability, good water could there be found. Thus was begun the movement that resulted in the removal of the county seat from Milan township, which was accomplished in 1818, by a process similar to that by which it was originally located. [It is needless to say anything further upon this subject, in the history of Milan, as the facts are fully set forth in the chapter upon Norwalk.]

A court house was commenced in 1817, upon the Abbott farm, but was never finished. It stood for many years.


The earliest religious meetings in Milan other than those held by the Moravian missionaries were irregular gatherings at barns and private houses addressed by various itinerant preachers. Among them was the Rev. Milton Badger who preached in the Abbott settlement before the war, and was chaplain at Fort Avery during the war. The Methodists organized a class in the Jeffrey neighborhood as early as 1816, and Thomas Jeffrey was its leader. The Rev. Father Gurley, Rev. Manger, the earnest and eccentric James McIntyre, Rev. Mr. Tillottson, "who spoke under the influence of spirits—from a bottle", were among the early preachers of this denomination.

[VV. Ed. Note: Rev. Tillottson had to keep up his spirits somehow. How humorous…]

The Presbyterian Church was organized under the name of the First Congregational Church of Huron, April 25, 1818, in a log house at Spear's corners, the preachers presiding upon that occasion being the Rev. William Williams and Rev. Alvin Coe, of the Connecticut Missionary Society. The first members of the church, all of them deceased many years ago, were William Spears and his wife, Love, Gilbert Sexton and his wife Deborah, William and Philo Adams and their mother, Eleanor. In 1819, the church received a number of accessions. Religious services were held every Sunday, alternately at the houses of Mr. Spears and Seth A. Adams, and later at the log houses built in the neighborhood. In 1823, the church removed from Spears' corners to Milan, and changed its name to the First Congregational Church of Milan. The first officers—two deacons were appointed in 1824. They were Henry Buckingham and Joseph Demond. In the following year, the church changed the form of its government to the Presbyterian, and elected three ruling elders: William Spears, Joseph Demond and David Everett. At this time there were thirty-seven members. After the removal of the church to the village, meetings were held in a schoolhouse which stood on the lot now occupied by the town hall, and subsequently in the yellow school house. The call for services was the blowing of a horn. An era of unwonted prosperity dawned upon the church in 1829, beginning under the preaching of Rev. Everton Judson. A new impulse was given to the church, which had lapsed somewhat from its past prosperous condition, and a strong feeling of interest was awakened in the village which had, then, about four hundred inhabitants.

In 1828, the legislature incorporated the First Presbyterian Society of Milan, but no movement was made to erect a church until 1835, when a few citizens convened at the suggestion of N. M. Standart, Esq., to devise measures to secure this object. The result was the completion, two years later, of the present substantial house of worship, the expense being about eight thousand dollars. The first minister who labored with this congregation was the Rev. Lot B. Sullivan, who preached at Spear's corners and in the Adams neighborhood. For some time after, the church was destitute of a pastor, and was supplied with occasional preaching by Revs. Alvin Coe, Caleb Pitkin, J. Seward, Alfred H. Betts, Wm. Sanford and J. Treat. The next regular pastor was the Rev. Thomas L. Shipman. Those who followed were Isaac S. Demond, W. M. Adams, Everton Judson, Newton Barrett, J. M. Hayes, Alanson Hartpence, and the present pastor. Rev. J. H. Walters, who was installed October 7, 1856, although he began preaching to the society as early as May 1855. The Rev. Everton Judson, who began his labor with the church in 1829, continued his relation until removed by death in 1848, and his services were very largely instrumental in building up the church to a condition of prosperous and active life.

The Methodist Episcopal Church was organized in 1830, and the house of worship erected in 1845. The church has increased to a membership of about one hundred and fifty persons.

St. Luke's Episcopal Church was organized in 1846, and a year later a house of worship was erected, which…

Excerpts from: The Fire Lands, Comprising Huron and Erie Counties, Ohio; W.W. Williams - 1879 -
Press of Leader Printing Company, Cleveland, Ohio

Mary's Beauty Shop


HOW CHARMING: Vermilionites Mary Lynn and Frank Homitz have a knack for choosing and saving small articles from the town’s past that – were it not for their existence – most of use might have long forgotten. Mary Avery’s Charm Beauty Shop is one of them.

Though I never had reason (of course) to visit I remember it – or, rather, the Avery home on Sandusky Street where it was located. The house is still there. And as it was way back when, it remains a well kept home today.

The home is located on the east side of Sandusky Street in the middle of the block. Until relatively recently I believe Mary’s daughter lived there. I don’t know who lives there today (2014).

This artifact was handed out when it was still very fashionable to smoke.

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From Hilda

As my five-year-old son and I were headed to McDonald's one day, we passed a car accident. Usually when we see something terrible like that, we say a prayer for those who might be hurt, so I pointed and said to my son, "We should pray."

From the back seat I heard his earnest request: "Please, God, don't let those cars block the entrance to McDonald's.”

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LOCAL ANNOUNCEMENTS: After giving it much thought this link has been "put-down". During the last year most of the folks who used to use this page as a bulletin board have acquired their own and, consequently, no longer need this forum from "Views". I have, however, kept links (in the links section) to Larry Hohler's "Hope Homes" in Kenya - and to Bette Lou Higgins' Eden Valley Enterprises sites. They are historically and socially relevant projects. I suggest that you visit these sites on a regular basis to see "what's shakin'".

Pay particular note to the "Hope Homes" page during the next few months / years. They are constantly improving the lives of their youngsters and those around them. This is an exciting project accomplished by exciting people.

Although this years Vermilion High School Class of 1959 reunion is over classmates may want to stay connected with each other through organizer Roger Boughton. Ye can connect by mailing him @ 2205 SW 10th Ave. Austin, MN. 55912 or you can just emailRoger.

Persons interested in the history of the Lake Shore Electric Railway (which was the subject of a recent past podcast series) - "the greatest electaric railway system on the planet" may want to go to Amazon.com and purchase a book called "Images of Rail - Lake Shore Electric Railway". It was put together by Thomas J. Patton with the help of my friends Dennis Lamont and Albert Doane. It'd make a nice gift.

Another great book with Vermilion Roots is, "Grandmas’ Favorites: A Compilation of Recipes from Margaret Sanders Buell" by Amy O’Neal, Elizabeth Thompson and Meg Walter (May 2, 2012). This book very literally will provide one with the flavor of old Vermilion. And ye can also find it at Amazon.com. Take a look.

MARY WAKEFIELD BUXTON’S NEW BOOK “The Private War of William Styron” is available in paper back for $15.00 with tax and can be purchased locally at Buxton and Buxton Law Office in Urbanna, ordered from any book store, Amazon.com or Brandylane Publishing Company. A signed, hard back edition may be purchased from Mrs. Buxton directly for $30.00 by writing her at Box 488, Urbanna, VA 23175 and including $6.00 for tax, postage and packaging.

THE BEAT GOES ON: This page is generated by a dreaded Macintosh Computer and is written and designed by (me) Rich Tarrant. It will change weekly ~ usually on Saturday. Bookmark the URL (Universal Resource Locater) and come back at your own leisure. Send the page to your friends (and enemies if you wish). If you have something to share with those who visit this page, pass it on. And if you see something that is in need of correction do the same. My sister, Nancy, is a great help in that respect. It only takes me a week to get things right. And follow the links. You might find something you like. If you experience a problem with them let me know. Also, if you want to see past editions of this eZine check the new archives links below.

If you're looking for my old links section (pictured) I've replaced it with a pull-down menu (visible in the small box next to the word "Go"). If you're looking for links to more Vermilion history check that menu.

How the old links menu looked

Links to additional Vermilion Ohio pages:

For Persons who would like to donate to the cause (to keep these "Views" on-line you can send whatever you would like to me at the following address. And THANKS to everybody who has already donated to the cause. I doth certainly appreciate it):
Rich Tarrant
1041 Oakwood Drive
Vermilion, Ohio
Telephone: 440-967-0988 - Cell: 440-670-2822

or you can use PayPal: (NOTE: IT WORKS NOW)

“Fashion is something that goes in one year and out the other.”

Vol.12, Issue 20 - July 26, 2014

Archive Issue #594

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