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Vermilion Ohio, A Good Place to Live

A thought for the day: Truth is not determined by a majority vote. -Pope Benedict XVI......My hopes are not always realized, but I always hope….-Ovid......A wise man gets more use from his enemies than a fool from his friends.-Baltasar Gracian......This week Pete Seeger tells us about John Brown's Body.......rnt..........

July 19, 2014 -  South Shore Shopping Center and Grand St.


SHOPTALK: SHOPTALK: Atop my home desk this week is an old pic of the day they broke ground for Vermilion’s South Shore Shopping Center. I don’t recognize any of the fellas in the shoot except Charles “Chuck” Wheeler Baumhart. He is the gent in the middle of the group of three with the shovel, a moustache, and a smile on his face. Chuck was Vermilion’s mayor at the time. It was probably in 1960 or 1961.

The sign for the Motel Plaza (motel) is in plain view on the right, and the Crystal Beach “Thriller” roller coaster looms over the scene.

The house in the background is the old Blanchat / Calvert home (the owners of Crystal Beach Amusement Park). It was a large home.

On the shoptop this week is a rather recent photograph taken from the middle of Grand Street looking north toward Liberty Avenue.

There’s nothing dramatic, pretty, or terribly unusual about the pic. Perhaps that’s all the drew me to take it.

Bailey’s Hardware is out of business; Fulper’s is no more; and the old filling station / car show room on the northwest corner of Liberty and Grand is gone – replaced by another pocket park called Friendship Park. It’s more of an addition the Ritter Library than the town. Cute.

Time marches on.

CALIFORINIA VISITOR: On Friday Rod Bondurant from Camptonville, California paid a visit to the museum.

Camptonville (in case it escapes anyone) was the place where Vermilion’s Lester Pelton lived and invented the wheel that still supplies electricity to folks around the world.

It’s a small town of about 400 souls, and Rob constitutes exactly one quarter of their historical society. He is also the fire department, school bus driver and news guy. There is a bar in town and an elementary school that was built for the town with funds provided by Mr. Pelton. It is called (what else) Pelton Elementary.

I have exchanged emails with two other members of their historical society for maybe ten years or so – about things pertaining to Lester Pelton. That’s how Rod knew of me and our museum.

I took Rod on a tour of our town; the Pelton Hotel; his marker at Cuddeback Cemetery; his boyhood home on Risden Road; and we visited Lester’s final resting place at Maple Grove Cemetery (which is something we need to tend to in the near future).

When he gets back to California (he’s driving across the nation) he said he’d look into finding a Pelton wheel for us. It was a very interesting visit.

SKETCHES: My newest book, “Sketches of Yesteryear in Vermilion, Ohio” has been arrived. 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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Four Vermilion girls


AIN’T THEY CUTE(?): My friend and former primary and secondary school classmate Dan Buell Wheeler provided this wonderful snap of the girls stealing late Vermilionite Mary Smith’s daffodils. (I don’t believe they really stole the flowers. Mary probably set this scene up.)

Pictured from left to right are: Kathleen Buell, Judy Shaw Williams, Avis Walker, and Dana Buell Wheeler. Ain’t they cute?

From this pic I would have known Kathleen, Judy, and Dana. But I would not have recognized Avis.

By the looks of the background I’d guess that the photo was taken on Smith’s property (next door to the Buell home) near Edson Creek. And of course it would have been on a Sunday in the springtime. The girls are not in their play clothes.

What a great photograph.

Back of Town Hall

Behind Town Hall


"So for the graduates of the Vermilion High School Class of 1944 there was very little pomp..."

VERY LITTLE POMP AND A LOT OF CIRCUMSTANCE: A few weeks ago my friend Mary Louise “Tootie” Reisinger called and left a message for me – asking if I would meet with her and a group of her Vermilion High School classmates at Vermilion’s International Restaurant. She wanted me to take a few pictures of the gathering. I nearly missed her call because I’m habitually remiss about answering my home telephone and / or listening to messages. As a consequence, by the time I caught the message the group had already been at the restaurant for at least a half hour. So, as some say, “I got a move on” and arrived at the restaurant just as lunch was being served. When this group held their class reunion five years ago I arrived early and took a group photo (VPJ 06/04/2009). This time it was too late for another group photo so I took several photos of them at their table. These are members of Vermilion High School’s graduating class of 1944.

Aside from the fact that “Tootie” and her husband “Shorty” are two of my favorite Vermilion people another reason I wanted to visit this gathering is because this class is one of two Vermilion High School graduating classes whose final school years were overshadowed by WWII. By the time they reached their junior and senior years shortages of both ink and paper (among other things) during the period meant that neither this class, nor the one that preceded it, had the privilege of having a yearbook record with their graduation photographs in it. So in a very simple way my photos may help fill in the space where their yearbooks should have been – albeit somewhat belatedly. The graduating class at Vermilion High School in 1944 had only 36 young people in it; and was equally divided between genders. They were Paul Allen, Loren Bachman, Merle Baker, Jerry Basilone, Juanita Beetler, John Brackley, Joyce Brothers, Mary Louise Chandler, Anna Laura Demuth, Gloria Derby, Virginia Dumas, Irene Fandrich, Mary Jane Fischer, Dalton "Dutch" Forrider, Irene Gerber, Ed Greiner, Dale Hoffman, Emma Kamps, Chuck Kishman, Evelyn Kyle, Dick Livingood, Louis Lumley, LaVina Lumley, Bill Marks, Ray Maslanka, Emil Novotny, Ed Schmidt, Eddie Schwensen, Eleanor Sprunk, Jim Snell, Arch Stevenson, Irene Szekley, Margaret Tomusko, Anna Tokar, Cecelia Vasu, and Dale "Tulip" Wendell.

In case it escapes anyone the war was always heavy on everyone’s mind during those years. Because of this seven members of the class: Lou Rodgers, Gene Goll, Gene Boone, Billy Bond, John Markovich, Walt Taylor, and Gaylord Reising never participated in commencement exercises. That’s because they were already participating in war exercises. [ Ed. Note: Eugene Boone passed away just this week in July of 2014.]

Unfortunately, one member of the class, William Frank Bond, lost his life in Europe on November 27, 1944. He was just 20 years old. It should be noted that many of the male members of the graduating class joined the service very soon after they graduated. Fortunately, by the following August the Great War had ended. So for the graduates of the Vermilion High School Class of 1944 there was very little pomp [i.e. ceremony and splendid display, especially at a public event] in that yesteryear. But there certainly was a good deal of circumstance [i.e. a fact or condition connected with or relevant to an event or action]. Yet despite the difficulties caused by the war my friend “Tootie” told me, "All of this made our class closer because every 5 years when we've had a reunion most everybody comes if they can.” I know many of them will be there to celebrate their 75th anniversary in five years. I only hope that I will be there with my Nikon. That is – if I manage to answer my telephone in time.

Ref: Vermilion High School Log Book – 1942; Special thanks to Mary Louise Reisinger and the VHS Class of 1944; Published in the Vermilion Photojournal 06/05/14.

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.12 – August 23, 1906.


A bill of exceptions has been filed in the court of common pleas in the case in which Gustavus Graham was recently ordered to pay into the treasury of Erie county about $2,000 received from local banks as presents during his term of office as county treasurer. The case will be held in the circuit court at its session, which opens on Sept. 10th. A petition in error has already been filed in the circuit court by Attorney Peeke on behalf of Mr. Graham; setting fourth the grounds on which the decision of Judge Richards is sought to be reversed.


Arthur John Copeland, 29, Vermilion, machinist, and Miss Fanny Wright, 26, Vermilion.

[VV. Ed. Note: Arthur J. Copeland and wife Fanny were the parents of Arthur D. Copeland (b. 1909). Arthur D. worked as a machinist for the F.W. Wakefield Company. Young Arthur married Mary Decker. They had three children: Arthur J., Richard “Rick” B., and Melissa. Melissa died rather at a rather young age in 1971 This was / is a very prominent Vermilion family.]

Parley H. Slate, widower, 40, Huron, railroader, and Miss Cora Adine Mears, 36, Huron.


The crew of the tug Fred Driscoll found the body of a man in the lake off Vermilion Saturday and towed it into port. It was taken to Beeckel’s undertaking rooms and the coroner notified. After searching for means of identification the body was ordered buried. The remains had evidently been in the water along time being in very bad condition. Burial took place last Saturday afternoon.


Geo. Blanchat manager of Oak Point Pleasure Resort Co. has secured an option on Shadduck’s Lake Park. The price, which he has agreed to pay for the 42 and one half acres comprising the park, is $14,000. The option expires Nov. 1st next. The contract has been filed in the recorders office. The grantors are Geo. W. Shadduck, Frank Lynn and Eva Lynn.

[VV. Ed. Note: And what a deal this was. This little article is a piece of local historical trivia. As most readers know that this was the very beginning of Vermilion’s Crystal Beach Amusement Park. So take note of the date. It’ll be on the test.]

Funeral of Adam Lattiman Sr.

The funeral of Adam Latterman [sic] Sr. takes place at Birmingham today. Mr. Latterman [sic} was a brother-in-law of the late Jacob Englebry. A number of relatives and friends from this place will attend.

[VV. Ed. Note: The correct spelling is LATTIMAN. The typesetter probably experienced some grief for the misspellings later on – and I feel for him or her. Mr. Lattiman was born in Germany and lived and farmed in the Brownhelm area. Why his funeral was in Birmingham is unknown.]


Supt. J.C. Seeman
A.L. Irey, Prin. High School
Warren Hickernill, 8th and 9th Grade
Miss Sadie Harris, 6th and 7th
Miss Hattie Abell, 5th and 6th
Miss Anna Baxtine, 3d. and 4th
Miss Margaret Christie, 1st. and 2d.
Miss Katherine Bacon, teach of music.

[VV. Ed. Note: Eventually Miss Abell would marry a local sailor named George Rathbun. They would have two sons: Robert and Harold. Robert married Dorothy (Hain) and they had three sons; Robert, David and John – and two daughters; Diane and Susan. They also adopted three children. Son Dave remained in Vermilion and is married to Karin Kishman. Miss Abell was quite a pretty young lady. I have several pix of her. Her father, Jacob, was the town barber.]


Workmen under the instructions of the village council removed a sawmill from the street east of the mill owned by the Geo. Fischer Lumber co. Mr. Fischer had been ordered to move the mill but had not complied with the request.

[VV. Ed. Note: Persons following this part of “VV” should take note of this little blip. The lumber company had been operating in this area for years without any problems. Suddenly someone noticed that the mill was located on a dedicated street and decided that Fischer should move the mill. Although he may have been legally bound to move the mill – it was certainly a technicality because the town really had no intention – nor way – to use that part of the street. The street in question may have been Toledo Street that dead-ends at the river. It was really nitpicking. I assume that someone (or ones) had some personal beef with Mr. Fischer. ‘Twas really a matter of small town politicing.]


Ball game Saturday at Shadduck’s Park between the Brass Workers and Fishermen.


The Lorains and the Vermilions will clash again the third game of the season on the coming Monday afternoon, Sept, 3rd, Labor Day on the Shadduck’s Lake Park grounds at Vermilion, Ohio. As each team has won a game the coming battle will be for blood and will also decide the winner of the series.

Game will be called on scheduled time.


The Vermilion, Ohio Independents will journey to Sandusky on the coming Sunday afternoon Sept. 2nd, and do battle with the Stars.

Special cars via the Lake Shore Electric will leave Vermilion at 12.00 Noon and 1.00 p.m. going direct to the grounds/

On account of the intense rivalry that exists between these teams in Erie county a record-breaking attendance is anticipated.

Game called at 2.30 p.m. Standard Time.


The local businessmen’s team is anxious for a game with the Vermilion storekeepers team for some Thursday in the near future. Recently when challenged, the Vermilions made an answer regarding the playing ability of the locals that was not agreeable to their pride, and they announce that if Vermilion requires a wager before giving them a game they are read to post any amount from $5 to $25. The locals are convinced that they have the fastest exclusive businessmen’s team in this vicinity and they stand ready to play all comers. –Lorain Times Herald.


Mrs. N. T. Derry had a night blooming cereus on exhibition Thursday evening.

And accident which might have proved fatal to a number of workmen occurred Thursday morning near the Wickham fish h=shanty. A boiler which had been bricked up and which was being used for tarring twine exploded and the bricks were hurled with great force for along distance. Fortunately there was no one near the boiler at the time of the accident.

Mr. John Hoffer, yardmaster at eh Wheeling yards, has move his wife and children from Portland, Ore. to this place.

BORN – A daughter to Mrs. Minnie Krock Tuesday, Aug. 21.

Saturday evening a building on the docks which was being used by the Wheeling company to store coal oil and gasoline, was found to be on fire. The fire department quickly responded by the flames reached tank, which contained two and a half barrels of gasoline and an explosion followed. After this the flames quickly spread and in a vey few minutes the building was totally destroyed.

Hunkin Bros. contractors of Cleveland commenced work Saturday morning on the east jetty. The work is to build an east jetty 1800 feet long and to put a concrete top on the west pier for a distance of 680 feet. The cost of the entire work is to be about $15,200 and is to be complete by November first 1907.

Capt. and Mrs. A.H. Pearl attended a family picnic dinner at Ruggles grove Saturday. The following were among the party: Mr. and Mrs. Allin Pearl and three children of Chicago, Mr. and Mrs. Kelton of Columbus, Dr. Douglas of Sandusky, Mr. and Mrs. C. Hill and daughter of Berlin Hts.

Simeon Yetter died at his home on Ohio street at 3 o’clock Tuesday afternoon, aged 74 years. For a long time he suffered from cancer of the face. He was born in New Jersey but migrated when a boy to Margaretta township, where he lived before coming to Huron. He leaves a wife, four daughters and three sons. The funeral will be held here at 10 a.m. Thursday, the burial in the Castalia cemetery. Mr. Yetter was a veteran and a member of Moses Martin post G.A.R. of Huron.

Mr. and Mrs. Katuaurack’s baby died last night. The funeral will be held Wednesday morning at 9 o’clock from the Catholic church here. Interment at Milan.

There are twenty-six prisoners in Lorain County jail at present.

Eugene Debbs will be at Cedar Point next Saturday night and will deliver an address.

A correspondent [i.e. writer] to the Elyria Chronicle concerning Linwood park that may be of interest to many.

He says that the park contains the largest variety of native trees of any piece of wood in the state.

He says he has counted forty-four different kinds and would like to have someone make a list.

The summer guests who have been enjoying their vacation at or near Vermilion are going to their homes satisfied that they have found one of the finest spots on earth in which to rest. Never before has there been so many people here to spend the summer vacation and it ws quite difficult for many to find accommodations even with the new hotel open.


Katherine Zenner has been quite ill the past week.

Miss Bernice Wood met with quite an accident Monday while going down Mill Hollow hill her horse became unmanageable, upsetting eh buggy. She received some quite severe bruises.

[VV. Ed. Note: I can’t imagine trying to negotiate the hill at Mill Hollow in a horse and buggy before the days of the paved road.]

The infant daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Will Rothfuss died Thursday after a short illness. Funeral services were held Saturday conducted by Rev. A.D. Blakeslee.

Mr. and Mrs. A.D. Baumhart and Mr. and Mrs. W.F. Washburn are enjoying a trip to Niagara Falls this week.

Lorain sports held a boxing matching [sic] between George Frarien and Frank Klaus Thursday night near Lorain. It was a 32 round affair and declared a draw.

[VV. Ed. Note: I’ll bet that those two guys were unable to walk for a week after that battle. Talk about “beating the crap” out of someone. Maybe that’s where the phrase originated.]

Engineer Burges of the state board of health has been in Vermilion making tests as to the purity of the water. He informed the Board of Public affairs that the test resulted very satisfactory the water being as pure as possible..

This speaks well for our water works system. At the time known but has proven to be a success. [Sic]

Val Wellman and F. Peasley were riding in a carriage on the Brownhelm Center road last week Wednesday evening at about 9 o’clock when an auto came along at a rapid rate and forced them into the ditch crush two wheels. The autoists, two ladies and two gentlemen went on their way without stopping to see how much damage had been done.

$15 would about cover the cost of repairs to the carriage and the amount of damage to the men as tempers is beyond estimate. The abuse of road privileges will ultimately cause the passage of more stringent laws regulating the running of automobiles.

[VV. Ed. Note: You bet.]


John C. Black was born April 23rd, 1819 in Howard county, Maryland, and died August 14th, 1906 aged 87 year, e month and we days. He was of a family of two children. His brother, Henry Black survives him.

He came to Vermilion, Ohio in 1847. His residence in Vermilion township extends over a period of 59 years, and 43 years this time has passed at his present home.

He was married to Mary C. Phelps January 14th 1856. Five children survive him; one daughter and four sons. He was one of the pioneers of Vermilion, coming here all the way from Maryland overland with his father and mother. He was a good neighbor and citizen, kind and thoughtful in caring for his family. In and through his life was woven the beautiful words of the Golden rule. Hudson Tuttle officiated.


BORN – To Mr. and Mrs. Kropf Friday, Aug. 24, a daughter.

Sheriff Jacob Hoffmann was in Vermilion on business Monday.

Miss Maud Blake of Berlin Hts. has accepted apposition in the local telephone exchange.

The funeral of Mrs. Townsend of Birmingham took place yesterday.

Mrs. Fred Fleming of Elyria committed suicide Sunday afternoon by taking strychnine. Cause despondency. She was formerly a resident of Birmingham.

The storm Sunday afternoon interfered with the balloon ascension at Shadduck’s Park and nearly resulted disastrously to the balloon, however Prof. R.J. Hawkins determined not to disappoint the crowd and after the storm had passed the balloon “went up” and Prof. R.G. Reese made a successful parachute jump landing in the lake about ¾ of a mile from the park. The balloon went out into the lake about 1 1/2 miles and was recovered later.

Mrs. Copeland and daughter and Miss Wright arrived last week from Birmingham, England and have taken up their residence in Mrs. Wells’ tenant house at the foot of Grand St.

A quite wedding took place on August 22 when Miss Vera Shreve was married to Mr. George Shadduck, of Vermilion, O. Miss Shreve has been contralto soloist in the Cedar Avenue Disciple church dhoir for a number of years. Mr. and Mrs. Shadduck will be at home after October 1 at Vermilion – Cleveland Leader.

School opens September 10. Books will be sold at the Superintendent’s office Saturday afternoon, September 8. The price list will be published next week.

LOST – Between the residence of John Knott Sr. and the L.S.E. station a fine umbrella. Finder please leave at the NEWS Office.

LOST – Black Spaniel dog. Milk white spot in breast. Reward if returned to Petere J. Hahn, State Street, Vermilion, O.

Henry Fischer and family of Webbville, Ky., and Mrs. J.L. Patterson and daughter, and Mrs. Chas Fischer of Paintsville, Ky., who have been visiting Mrs. N. Fischer left for their homes Monday.

Henry Fischer, while here, purchased a carload of Shronshires [sic] at Oberlin to be shipped to his ranch Fischerville Range, Webbville, Ky.

[VV. Ed. Note: I’m unsure what was meant by “Shronshires”. I’d guess that what was actually meant was “Shropshires”. And whether that meant sheep or chickens is Hopkins choice.]

Real Estate Transfers

C.C. Baumhart to A.D. and Effie Baumhart, lot 88, block 28, Vermilion village; $1,800.

[VV. Ed. Note: This lot would have been on the south side of Ferry Street one lot east of Washington Street. It would have been about where late Vermilion grocer George Rathbun and his wife Hattie once kept a home. Currently (2014) Vermilion’s Ritter Public Library occupies that space.]


A.B. Todd Fruit Truck

THE TODDS: I hope I get this right. [Sometimes when I trace families I get things muddled.] The accompanying photo, by the way, was made from a digital scan of a metal plate used in the letterpress printing business. This particular plate is copper. It was made by exposing a photo print in a large process camera with a vacuum back which holds the film perfectly flat during a long exposure. The resulting very dense high contrast "lithographic" film is then contact printed onto a sensitized copper plate (a gum bichromate / dichromate process). The plate is then put into an acid etch bath that eats away the exposed portions and leaves the unexposed portions (a dot screen) in a relief. Ink sits on the high spots that touch the paper. When an inked plate and paper are pressed together in a printing press it results in creating a legible image for a newspaper or advertisement. Photo and digital printing methods have of course, replaced this process. But back to the Todd family:

This photo was taken on or near the Todd farm on Mason Road in Florence Township probably in th 1920s when A.B. Todd had the farm. The identity of the youngster is unknown (to me) at this time.

Kneeland and Julia Todd – “O.Ks.” grandparents - were were born in Connecticut. According the U.S. census of 1880 their son, Woodward H. (a poultry stock breeder) and his wife, Sophia C. (Kline), were born in Ohio. They had two sons –Otto (b.1878) and A.B. “Albert” (b.1881).

O.K. “Otto” was a traveler. In 1906 he toured Europe. In 1921 after a six-year illness he died. He was only 43 years old.

After Otto’s death Albert took over the family fruit farm (ergo, the truck in the pic). A.B. was the third generation of the Todd family to carry on the fruit growing business. Raising peaches had always been his specialty. He developed a type of peach he called a “Scotty”. His first wife Cora died in 1930. He then married an Axtel-born gal named Irene Miller. He passed away in 1955.

Albert’s son was Lewis. His children, Evelyn Wheelock (now deceased) and Gene were / are well known to many current (2014) Vermilionites. He died rather young at age 49.

Aside from his work as a 4th generation fruit grower Lewis was active in Vermilion’s Congregational Church, had served a term on the Vermilion Board of Education, and was an active member of the Erie County Fruit Growers Association and Farm Bureau.

[NOTE: I did make an effort to find a truck like that in the pic accompanying this monograph without any luck. It’s really unusual. From what I can tell thus far, few farm trucks like it (with the double axel bed) were made. My assumption is that Mr. Todd may have put it together himself; or had someone do it for him.]

"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.



…throughout the sparsely settled frontier, and created grave apprehensions in the older settlements, more remote from the probable scene of the strife.

But little need here be said of the incidents of that war, for a chapter elsewhere is devoted to the subject. The wild and hurried flight of the people from Milan township, and all of the country adjacent and northward, though from a false alarm, was none the less terrible, for the flying people had every reason to believe they were pursued by the British soldiers and their red allies. After Hull's surrender the red coats were seen landing men upon the lakeshore, and immediately those who saw this sight, becoming panic stricken, fled through the country southward, carrying with them the terrible tidings. The flight was instantaneous and universal, all going in the direction of Mansfield. By the time they reached the State road, leading south, the only one then open, night had come on. The company had increased to such an extent that the road was thronged for half a mile. Many had left without sufficient clothing, or food for their needs, abandoning everything, that they might save life. About midnight the panic was arrested by the appearance in the rear, of men carrying packs but not armed. It was not long before they were discovered to be Hulls surrendered and disarmed soldiers, who by the terms of the capitulation were landed that they might return home. In the morning, after consultation, a greater part of the crowd who had left their homes continued upon their way to Mansfield, and the remainder, returning to Avery, (Milan), secured their effects the best way they could, and then passed down the lake to Black River and other points. The men then made up a company and returned to Huron. Joseph Quigley, of Black River, was elected captain of this company, and David Barrett, of Milan, lieutenant. After the arrival of some scattering companies and the main army, General Perkins established Camp Avery on the east side of the Huron river, on lands owned by Ebenezer Merry. Those among the soldiers, who lived in the immediate vicinity, were then disbanded that they might attend to their home duties, though it was conditioned that they should still remain subject to call in case of need.

The soldiers remained at this camp until the following winter, a company of rangers also being stationed at a block house that was built in section four, of Milan township, upon the farm of Charles Parker. They had the double duty to perform of protecting themselves from the British soldiers and the property in the vicinity from the roving plunderers, who were mostly Indians who had formerly lived in the vicinity. Many times the settlers had to abandon their homes and take shelter in the fort. Once a portion of the army was dispatched after the enemy to the peninsula. They found and attacked them there. It was in this engagement that Alexander Mason lost his life, as did also Mr. Ramsdell and Daniel Mingus. Two men, by the names of Seymour and Pixley, who went out from Parker's block house one morning, to cut down a bee-tree, were overwhelmed by Indians who lay in ambush. Seymour was killed and his companion taken prisoner. He afterwards said that most of the Indians had been among the residents of the village. Indians were constantly lurking about, and danger was present upon every side. The settlers were in constant anxiety, and every unusual sound was feared to be the signal for a terrible onslaught and massacre. Fortunately there was no such general attack, though almost every day there was some minor evil deed committed, or some occurrence to cause alarm. When peace came it brought such a sense of relief that most of those who had remained away, during the war, returned to this favored locality of their adoption. Other settlers came in from the east, society was formed, religious organizations sprang into being, a village was laid out, industry progressed in old and found new channels, too. Then began the period of Milan's prosperity. The growth and development of the farming interests were as rapid as was usual in other townships, and the progress of the village its and manufacturing and commercial interests something quite phenomenal.


There is reason to believe, but not positive knowledge, that the first white child born to any of the permanent settlers of Milan, was a daughter of Lazarus Young, afterwards the wife of Amherst Milliman, of Townsend, Huron county.

The first physicians were Doctors Goodwin and Guthrie. Before their arrival in the settlement, people in need of medical attention were obliged to send to Cleveland, from which place a Dr. Long frequently came to Milan.

The first military company upon the Fire-lands, was formed in the fall of 1811, and met for its first muster on April 1st, following, at John B. Flemmond's. David Barrett, of Milan, was elected captain of this militia organization.

Two deaths occurred in the township in the summer season of 1811. Both were children, one from the family of George Miller, and the other from that of David Barrett.

The first log house was built by a party of young men, Barrett, Nathaniel Glines, Seth Hayes, Ebenezer Hayes, F. W. Fowler, Stephen Worthington and L. Durand, in 1810, and was located in section two. This was the first improvement by white inhabitants in the township, except the beginning made on the opposite side of the river, by Jared Ward.

The first framed building was a barn built by David Abbott. The first framed dwelling was also built by Mr. Abbott. This is also said to have been the first residence, other than a log cabin, upon the Firelands.


The township of Avery was originally connected with Huron, and included under that name. The…

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

Lions Club Pin


WHEN LIONS ROAR: My good friend and local artist Frank Homitz dropped in to the museum several times during the last week with numerous items – and this is but one.

As is obvious, it’s not extremely old – but it is extremely interesting. It’s a community service pin – 1951-1991 – with the River Bridge and water tower embedded on it. I don’t know how common it might be, but I sure like it.

I don’t know if the club still has things like this currently – but they still do a great deal of good in the community of Vermilion, Ohio.

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The math teacher saw that little Billy wasn't paying attention in class. She called on him and said, "Billy! What are 2 and 4 and 28 and 44?"

Little Billy looked at her and replied, "NBC, CBS, HBO and the Cartoon Network."

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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)

“A ruffled mind makes a restless pillow.”
-Charlotte Bronte

Vol.12, Issue 19 - July 19, 2014

Archive Issue #593

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