Minutes of the Avon Historical Society, 3-4-09

President Jack Smith called the March 4, 2009, meeting of the Avon Historical Society to order at 7:02 p. m. There were about 25 members and guests present.

The minutes of the February 4 meeting were approved as read with Carol Smith making the motion and Suzy Cory seconding.

Treasurer Barb Wolfe stated there was $6,677.71 in the money market account and $1,348.96 in checking.

In old business Jack reported for Bob Gates' Landmarks Preservation Commission meeting. He said the school on the Mayton property is now included on the preservation list. It had not been included on the initial list.

The Commission continues to refine the suggested ordinance for Avon City Council to secure for Avon certification of the local government for grant purposes.

[Part of the Landmarks Preservation Commission Minutes of 2-11-09 are included here:

``Minutes of the Landmarks Preservation Commission

February 11, 2009

Avon City Hall-Caucus Room

Commission Members: Carol Hartwig (Chair), Bob Gates (Vice-Chair), Lois Shinko, Joe Richvalsky

1) The meeting was called to order at 7:35 P.M. by Chairperson, Carol Hartwig...

Addition to the Survey List [Avon Register of Landmarks] by the Commission.

Avon Schoolhouse built in 1875 Located on Center Road. Presented by Mr. Richvalsky.

Utilizing the form entitled "Application for Local Landmark Designation", Mr. Richvalsky advised that the Avon School No. 5, built in 1875 is an outstanding example of rural educational buildings of the era. It is a twin to the Old Avon Town Hall of 1871 located on Detroit Road with only minor differences to window and door locations on the front façade. Potentially, the two buildings are a good source of information to compare and contrast to each other for future restoration efforts.

One of the pictures taken shows the Avon Schoolhouse No. 5 Medallion.

This brick schoolhouse had dark green chalkboards and a cupola for ventilation. After the opening of consolidated schools, it was used as farm building to house the boiler for tomato hotbeds. The tomatoes were later planted in the open fields. In the summer, its three layers of brick provided cool storage for peppers.

It is believed that the same builder may have constructed both buildings. Also, there are two entrances in front of the building – one entrance was used by the boys; the other, by the girls. Boys sat on one side of the classroom and the girls on the other.

This is believed to be part of the eastern culture that had worked its way west. The 1874 map that Mr. Gates has shows the schoolhouse in Section 13. Each section was a square mile and at that time, it is assumed that each section had a schoolhouse.

Another known fact is that Avon was very prosperous during the 1840's and 1850's. In the 1870's after the Civil War, there were more structures being built in Avon.

The Landmarks Selection Criteria pertaining to this structure are as follows:

Its character, interest or value as part of the development, heritage or cultural characteristics of the City of Avon, State of Ohio or the United States.

Its location as the site of a significant historical event.

Its exemplification of the cultural, economic, social or historic heritage of the City of Avon.

Its portrayal of the environment of a group of people in the era of history characterized by a distinctive architectural style.

Its embodiment of distinguishing characteristics of an architectural type or specimen.

Its relationship to other distinctive areas that are eligible for preservation according to a plan based on a historic, cultural, architectural, topographic or geographic motif.

Its unique location or singular physical characteristics representing an established and familiar visual feature of a neighborhood, rural area of the City of Avon.

After further discussion, a motion was made by Mr. Gates and seconded by Mrs. Shinko to include this structure in the Register of Landmarks. A vote was taken and all were in favor of adding this schoolhouse to the register. A congratulatory letter will be sent to the property owner stating that Mr. Gates will be delivering the plaque ...'']

Regarding the application for National Registration designation for the Avon Isle, Ralph White said the document would be reviewed by the State of Ohio Board of Parks which meets three times per year. The Ohio Parks Board will make a recommendation on the request to the US Department of the Interior. The Board may ask for more information or clarification before making their recommendation. The ruling may come in June.

Jack again encouraged the beginning of the plans for the 2014 Bicentennial celebration for Avon.

Barb Wolfe made the motion to support the bicentennial plans. The French Creek Development Association made a similar support decree. Theresa Szipple seconded. Motion passed.

Jean Fisher will work with the city-wide committee yet to be developed.

In conjunction of the Fall Festival, September 11-13, Jack would like the AHS to support a "Detroit Road Completion Celebration," as proposed by the FCDA. Jason Smith made the motion. Rosemarie Banfield seconded. Motion passed. Jack said he was assured by Aaron Appell of Bramhall Engineering that the work would be completed by August, 2009.

As further encouragement, Jean said there could be a celebration of the fact that Avon's first settler Wilbur Cahoon arrived on September 14, 1814.

Jack, remembering history stories, said that Wilbur visited his half brother Joseph in Bay Village (Dover Township) on his initial journey to Avon from the east. Because of the large trees and swampy area between Lake Erie and Avon, it took Wilbur, his seven children and eighth-month pregnant wife in their wagon drawn by oxen, six days to make that short journey to a site on the future Stoney Ridge Road.

In other business, Jack asked society members to look among their photos for early Avon baseball pictures. He'd like there to be a historical presence at the Crusher's new baseball stadium. Jack has a picture of the Avon Athletic Association Baseball Team from 1925 to contribute. Among the pictured are Carol Smith's father and Susie Cory's father.

Jean Fisher announced the program for April 1 -- "Who Was Pierpont Edwards?" As a sneak preview she said she would tell of his family and how he paid $60,000 in 1797 to the Connecticut Land Company. She said he owned the land from North Ridgeville to Lake Erie, the American Erie Islands and land in Stark County.

Thesera Szippl questioned the WalMart grant to the society. Jack said the $1,000 given to the AHS was used in part to refurbish the landscaping around the Old Town Hall.

Barb Wolfe and Thesera Szippl provided refreshments.

The meeting adjourned at 7:35 with Stan Hawryluk making the motion and Ralph White seconding.

Jean introduced the speaker Betty Lou Higgins presenting, "Songs I Didn't Sing."

Respectfully submitted, JoAnne Easterday, Secretary


Jean Fisher will present "Who Was Pierpont Edwards?" at the meeting of the Avon Historical Society at 7 pm on Wednesday, 4-1-09, at the Old Town Hall of 1871, corner of Detroit and Stoney Ridge. For more information, contact Jean Fischer at 934-6106 or Stan Hawryluk at 934-0224.



I. Reading of the minutes of the meeting of March 4, 2009

II. Treasurer's Report

A. Any outstanding bills to present.

III. Old Business

A. Report from the Landmarks Preservation Commission, Bob Gates

B. Landscaping Committee, Chuck Huene

C. National Register Application for the Avon Isle, Ralph White

D. Detroit Road completion celebration, 2014 Avon Bicentennial, and baseball history, Jack Smith

E. __________________________________________

IV. New Business

A. Program for Wednesday, May 6, 2009, Jean Fischer and Stan Hawryluk:

Hear the tales of boats and pirates on the Inland Seas and the stories of the rest of the characters who were involved in helping to quench the thirst of Americans during Prohibition when Bette Lou Higgins presents YO, HO, HO AND A BOTTLE OF RUM! at the Avon Historical Society at 36995 Detroit Rd; Avon, Ohio -- Old Town Hall of 1871, corner of Detroit Road and Stoney Ridge Road.

B. __________________________________________

V. Motion to Adjourn and Second

Jack Smith will introduce Jean Fischer who will present "Who was Pierpont Edwards?"


Parking for meetings of the Avon Historical Society:

Next to Smitty's Barber Shop -- please disregard the "no parking" sign,

Across Detroit Rd. at Nemo's Restaurant (park close to Colorado),

Across Colorado Avenue (SR 611) behind Blue Chip,

On the east side of Buck's Hardware on Church Street,

Across Stoney Ridge at Lois Shinko's Country Store parking lot (just south of the Gazebo).

Of Interest:


"2014 AVON BICENTIENTAL - It was noted that 2014 will be the Avon Bicentennial, it would be an opportunity for a special, major project -- possibly a covered Bridge to Avon Isle. The City is planning to rebuild the bridge. Ridgeville will have their bicentennial in 2010 and we could start a fund raiser or program in relationship to that. We could start looking at the Avon Isle building to renovate. Possibly turn into a place like Hale Farm, a farming museum with old equipment, a garden etc with dress of the time, a village/museum. We would need this to be an "all city clubs" event."

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