WHO is It Wednesday photo for September 24, 2014

We shared a photo of a serious looking you man on our Facebook page on September 24 to see if anyone could guess the name of the man he grew up to be.

Who could this be?

Who could this be?

Guesses included James Leffel and Jonathan Winters, but the newspaper clipping actually shows a young Harry S. Kissell when he was about 12 years old. Harry Seaman Kissell was born on September 25, 1875 to Cyrus Broadwell (C.B.) and Lucretia Caroline McEwen Kissell. Harry graduated from Wittenberg in 1896, studied law for a couple of years, and worked as a newspaper reporter before entering the Kissell Real Estate business started in 1872 by Harry’s great grandfather Emmanuel and grandfather C.D. Harry married Olive Troupe, the daughter of drug store owner Theodore Troupe and they had two children: Roger and Mary Lucretia (Mary Lu).

Olive Troupe Kissell

Olive Troupe Kissell

Olive, Harry, and Mary Lu Kissell during their 1st trip to the White House, 1924.

Olive, Harry, and Mary Lu Kissell during their 1st trip to the White House, 1924.

Harry’s involvement in the local community and beyond was extensive. In 1907 Harry helped to organize the National Association Real Estate Boards (he also established the Ohio and Springfield Board of Realtors). He was one of the original organizers of American Trust and Savings, which merged with First National Bank, directed the Clark County Chapter of the American Red Cross, served on the Ferncliff Cemetery Association, on the Wittenberg executive committee, and was a founder of Ridgewood School. Harry served as the first chairman of the Springfield Community Fund, helped establish the Springfield Rotary Club (which just celebrated 100 years). He was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity, the Springfield Polo Club, Springfield Country Club, Springfield Chamber of Commerce, and Sons of the American Revolution. He was elected Most Worshipful Master of Mason in Ohio in 1910 and headed a half a million dollar effort to construct a Masonic Temple in Springfield.

KissellRotary1944 copyOne of his most notable ventures was the development of Ridgewood, which is discussed in great detail (along with a fantastic history of Springfield as a whole) in the book “Ridgewood in the Country Club District” by Tamara Dallenbach.
Harry was stricken by a fatal heart attack during a business meeting in Cincinnati on February 14, 1946. He is buried in Ferncliff Cemetery.

Harry Kissell's Residence on N. Fountain Blvd, 1939

Harry Kissell’s Residence on N. Fountain Blvd, 1939

Ridgewood Ad, 1921

Ridgewood Ad, 1921

More from the Kissell-Noonan Collection:

Harry Kissell, Age 12

Harry Kissell, Age 12

Harry Kissell, 1925

Harry Kissell, 1925

With Teddy Roosevelt (on his left) during Roosevelt's 1918 visit to Springfield.

With Teddy Roosevelt (on his left) during Roosevelt’s 1918 visit to Springfield.

With President Roosevelt, 1933

                                                              With President Roosevelt, 1933

Sources:

Beautiful Ferncliff: Springfield, Ohio’s Historic Cemetery and Arboretum by Paul W. Schanher III and Anne E. Benston

Ridgewood in the Country Club District by Tamara Dallenbach, Orange Frazer Press, 2011.

Biographical Category – Kissell-Noonan Collection

Biographical Category – Harry Kissell Collection

Commercial Category – Kissell Ridgewood Collection

Biographical

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WHAT is it Wednesday artifact for September 17, 2014

On Wednesday, September 24 we shared a photo of an artifact on our Facebook page to see if anyone could guess what it was.

What could this be?

                                                              What could this be?

There were some good guesses: soap, coaster, hot pad, etc., but there were a few people who guessed correctly….this is a prescription pillbox from Schmidt’s Drugstore. The boxes had a hinged lid so as to prevent it being mixed up with other prescriptions since the instructions for taking the medications were included on the box lid.

Hinged pillbox with prescription instructions inside.

                                        Hinged pillbox with prescription instructions inside.

Some of our volunteers in the archives recall that Schmidt’s Pharmacy, located at 63 W. Main Street, was the last of the locally owned drugstores that still mixed their own medicinal concoctions. The founders of Schmidt’s, Adam Schmidt, started out in business with Charles A. Smith around 1870 before forming his own store, Schmidt’s in around 1887.

Schmidt's Drugstore, located at 63 W. Main Street, Springfield, Ohio

Schmidt’s Drugstore, located at 63 W. Main Street, Springfield, Ohio, 1940, W. Huston Moores Collection

Some other items from our collection relating to local pharmacies include a cork compressor that pharmacists would use to size the corks properly for prescription bottles and a prescription “recipe” book used by Theodore Troupe at Troupe’s Drug Store.

Cork compressor

                                                                     Cork compressor

Prescription recipe ledger from Theodore Troupe's Drug Store.

                            Prescription recipe ledger from Theodore Troupe’s Drug Store.

The pillbox became a nickname for military guard posts that were used in WWI and WWII in Europe. The concrete pillboxes had holes from which weapons could be fired.

Dover Quad Pillbox, used in WWII, Dover, Kent. Source

Dover Quad Pillbox, used in WWII, Dover, Kent.                           Source

A popular fashion item also took it’s name from the pillbox: the pillbox style hat, which was popularized by Audrey Hepburn and Jackie Kennedy (and today by Kate Middleton).

Sources:

W. Huston Moores Photograph Collection

Springfield City Directories

Commercial Ledger Collection

WHERE is it Wednesday for September 10, 2014

On our Facebook page on Wednesday, September 10, we shared this sketch of an early Clark County home to see if anyone could guess where it was.

Where could this be?

                                                              Where could this be?

This was a tricky one! It showed a sketch of a home from the 1875 Clark County Atlas, the home of Jacob Thomas. It was formerly located on the northeast corner of N. Limestone and E. McCreight at 1206 E. Limestone and it was the home of Jacob and Sophia Thomas, who came here from Maryland in 1851. Jacob Thomas and his sons owned quite a bit of land farther north on Limestone and it appears that the home pictured in the 1875 atlas was built around 1870 according to the Springfield City directories. The corner where the house was built was right on the corporation line for the city of Springfield at the time, so until the late 1800s it was JUST outside the city limits.

1882 Atlas showing the corner of Limestone and Cooper (later McCreight) where the home stood.

     1882 Atlas showing the corner of Limestone and Cooper (later McCreight) where the home stood.

The last Thomas in the home was Jacob’s son Thomas. The house was torn down around 1923 and was later home to a gas station and is now where Muffler Brothers is located on North Limestone.

Our archives didn’t yield a lot more information on Jacob Thomas, but one of his sons, John H. (J.H.) Thomas was a very prominent Springfield citizen. John founded the Thomas and Mast Company with industrialist P.P. Mast in 1855 and the specialized in Buckeye grain drills, seeders, and cider mills.

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John Thomas left the company in 1872 and in 1874 he formed the Thomas Manufacturing Company with his two sons, William and Findley. The company made a variety of products including hay rakes, steam engines, lawn mowers, pumps, disc harrows, bicycles, grain drills, and seeders.

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We have a grain drill and a Thomas bicycle on display in the museum along with a few products from Thomas and Mast. John Thomas was a major philanthropist in the community, serving on city council and the Snyder Park board. He and Ross Mitchell gave a large financial gift that allowed for the establishment of the Mitchell-Thomas hospital on E. Main street, which was in use from 1887-1904.

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Mr. Thomas has the distinct honor of having THE tallest monument at Ferncliff cemetery.

Sources:

Springfield City Directories

Beautiful Ferncliff: Springfield, Ohio’s Historic Cemetery and Arboretum by Paul W. Schanher, III and Anne E. Benston

Health and Care Category – Medical Collection – Mitchell-Thomas Hospital

Manufacturing Category – Thomas Manufacturing Co.

1875 Clark County, Ohio Atlas

1882 Springfield Atlas

WHO is it Wednesday for September 3, 2014

On Wednesday, September 3, on our Facebook page we shared a WHO is it Wednesday photo of this woman here:

Who could this be?

Who could this be?

She had a familiar face to a few who made guesses; her horn rimmed glasses seemed to give her away as a teacher! This is Thelma A. Dunn, Wittenberg associate professor of education who taught from the time she graduated from Wittenberg in 1924 until her retirement in 1966. She was a 1921 graduate of Springfield High School and received her master’s degree from the Ohio State University. During her more than 4 decades at Wittenberg University, she supervised the practice teaching of over 2,500 students. It was her aim, she said, to impress upon her students that teaching is a job to be done and not merely a time clock to be punched. Several of our own retired teacher volunteers at the Heritage Center remember studying under Miss Dunn; one recalls her saying, “If you must yell at your students, be sure to lower your voice.” Thelma was honored with the Golden W award from Wittenberg in 1974. She died in 1979 and is buried in Ferncliff Cemetery. Thelma’s collection of materials in the historical society archives contains a wide range of items including a fair amount of artwork done during her earlier school years at Central school. Items pictured here out of her collection include more pictures of her from high school and college, her Wittenberg freshman grade card, a response from President Richard Nixon, school work, her mileage ration card, and a ticket for Ferncliff Cemetery.

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Sources:

Biographical Category – Thelma Dunn Collection