The Cahoon Homestead Museum is open April to December on Sunday afternoons, 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. It is located at 27715 Lake Road, Bay Village, OH 44140. Phone (440) 871-7338. Admission is free, although donations are always appreciated. The museum is run by volunteers from the Bay Village Historical Society. Group tours can be arranged at other times by calling (216) 386-5997.
Buildings on the campus
Rose Hill Museum The structure that houses the Rose Hill Museum was built in 1818 on the hill south of Lake Road by Joseph Cahoon and his family as their home. When the Cahoon family’s last area survivor, Ida Maria Cahoon, died in 1917, her will bequeathed the entire family property to the Village of Bay as a trust.
The mayor and city council are ex-officio trustees. Rose Hill, as Ida Cahoon wished, became the city’s library from 1919 to 1960. Her will also stipulated that if Rose Hill ceased to function as a library, it should become a museum. It opened as Rose Hill Museum in 1960 and the contents of the Cahoon home became the base of the museum’s collection.
Osborn Learning Center The Reuben Osborn house, the oldest frame dwelling between Cleveland and Lorain dating to 1814, was slated for demolition in the early 1990s and was moved from its lakeside lot to a spot near the Cahoon family home in Cahoon Memorial Park. It now serves as the Osborn Learning Center, and houses much of the Bay Village Historical Society’s papers, books and materials on the Sam Sheppard case, and a rotating variety of displays. Located in the historical district of Bay Village, the Osborn Learning Center is open on Sundays from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Community House In 1936, as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project, men from Bay Village and the WPA worked on Lake Road and also remodeled the Cahoon family barn to serve as a community house for the growing city. The new building replaced the old red schoolhouse at Bassett and Lake roads as the center of community activities. The lower portion housed the city’s fire department for many years. The Bay Village Community House currently is home to the city's recreation department and the Village Bicycle Cooperative. Plans for the future will make it a modern up-to-date community center to serve us even better.
Cahoon Cabin Joseph Cahoon and his family drove into the valley in Dover Township, now Bay Village, on Oct. 10, 1810. Since winter was approaching, it was imperative to create shelter. They built a cabin on the east side of a creek near the lakeshore in four days. In 1818, construction of their permanent home was completed at the top of the path along the lake and it now houses Rose Hill Museum. In 1976, Bay Village Mayor Henry Reese established a commission to plan historical events for the American Bicentennial. Boy Scout leaders John Brant and Donald Harris, along with members of the Bay Village Girl and Boy Scouts, their parents and friends, worked 3,900 hours to reconstruct the Cahoon cabin. A ribbon cutting was celebrated on Oct. 10, 1981, 171 years after the arrival of the Cahoons in Bay Village.
Smoke House and Jail A. Horace Wolf, who became the second mayor of Bay Village, serving from 1910 to 1915, lived on a property given to him by his father, Alfred, at 492 Bradley Road. (Horace had an airport in the 1920s located on the land behind St. Barnabas Church.) The old stone smoke house that stood behind the homestead house was used as a jail prior to Horace’s becoming mayor. It was used to lock up prisoners until the Marshall could take them to the county jail.
The large homestead was purchased by the city and the house, about 101 years old in August 1973, was torn down to make way for the new Jaycee Community House, now the Bay Lodge. The smokehouse was moved near the herb garden just south of Rose Hill Museum, where it stands today.