Autographs

The Bay Village Historical Society would like to send our congratulations to the recent graduates of Bay High School in 2024. One hundred years ago, in May of 1924, the two-year old Parkview School building (located where the middle school stands today) only housed grades 1-9th grade and was preparing to add a 10th grade class that fall. Any Bay Village graduating student at that time still needed to attend neighboring high schools, such as in Westlake and Rocky River, until Bay added its first senior class in the fall of 1926. You can view yearbooks for Bay’s high school all the way back to this first graduating class of 1927 at the Osborn Learning Center or by viewing a digital copy on our website here.

On the subject of yearbooks, one may think of the autographs within them. This personal addition of autographs and poems are left behind within the cover pages and margins of the book as fond remembrances from fellow schoolmates and teachers. Their messages can also be found in booklets from the late 19th century, made specifically for this purpose. We have a few such booklets in our collections, including some that contains locks of hair! The autograph books included here all contain signatures dating from the 1880s.

First is the autograph book of Miss Emily Oborn (b. 1871, d. 1955). Emily was the great-granddaughter of early Dover Township (now Bay Village) settlers Sarah and Reuben Osborn. Inside the booklet, the signatures implore Emily to not forget them and send best wishes and wonders about the future. The pages are signed by her teacher, family, and various friends and students, beginning in the early 1880s.

Pages from the autograph book of Miss Emily Osborn. Note the sticker or pasted image of flowers at top right. Such small images are often pasted in the pages of these books. 2021.07.09

The autograph book of Herbert “Bertie” Barker (b. 1871, d. 1924) contains signatures of schoolmates and friends in New York from 1882-1883 with some additional signatures collected into the 1890s. Barker later married a member of Dover Township’s Aldrich family.

Pages from the autograph book of Bertie Barker, 2021.FIC.033.

Edythe Amelia Aldrich (b. 1876 d. 1961) was the great-granddaughter of Elizabeth and Aaron Aldrich III, the first members of the Aldrich family to settle in Dover Township in 1816. Edythe Aldrich’s book contains many pieces of sage advice from Dover classmates but also some humorous poems and teases about the future love interest in her life. That person turned out to be Herbert Marcus Barker (Bertie Barker) whom she married in 1905.

Pages from the autograph book of Edythe (or Edith) Amelia Aldrich, with collected signatures from 1887-1891, 2021.FIC.034. The signature at left might be of Wirt Wallace Dodd (b. 1868, d. 1950). Dodd’s future daughter, Sarah, was a member of the first graduating class in Bay in 1927.
This page of Edythe Aldrich’s autograph book contains the signature of Arthur H. Wolf. This is probably Arthur H. J. Wolf (b. 1874, d. 1900), the grandson of early Dover settlers Ann and John Wolf, who came to the area in 1818 from Virginia. According to Bay Village: A Way of Life, Arthur’s father, Alfred, was born in 1828 in his parent’s log cabin, built 300 feet south of what is now Wolf Road, near Walmar Drive.

In May of 2023, we took a look back at a few pictures and papers from some early graduates of Bay Village on our Glimpse of the Past page. It’s worth a look!

Also worth a look is the historic Sarah and Reuben Osborn house, on Lake Road, next to Rose Hill Museum. It is believed to be the oldest surviving framed house between Cleveland and Lorain County. It was saved from destruction and moved to its current location in 1995. It also received a bit of a facelift in 2023 with a new paint job and some exterior work. The building is officially known as the Osborn Learning Center because it houses some small exhibits and resources for research on Bay history. Come visit this house as well as Rose Hill Museum on Sundays, April – December in 2024 from 2:00 – 4:30 p.m. (excluding holiday weekends). Contact us at info@bayhistorical.com or call us at 216-319-4634 with any questions. You may also visit our website at www.bayhistorical.com, for additional information.

Osborn Learning Center

by William Krause

27715 Lake Road, c. 1814

The second in a series of articles to be published as a walking tour of Lake Road by the Bay Village Historical Society in 2025.

The Reuben and Sarah Osborn House was originally located at 29202 Lake Road, west of Lakeside cemetery. Reuben Osborn arrived in Dover on the afternoon of Oct. 10, 1810, the same day Joseph Cahoon and family were the first non-native American settlers to arrive in Dover Township.

Reuben brought his wife and children from New York the following May.

This was the first frame structure constructed in Dover Township and is the oldest existing frame structure between Cleveland and Lorain. It is a simple gabled structure with roofline, massing, and fenestration which hint of the Greek Revival style popular at the time.

Reuben’s grandson Reuben occupied the house in 1903 when Bay seceded from Dover Township, and he became the first mayor.

In 1995 the land along the lake where the house was located was sold to a developer. When the developer learned of the importance of the house, he donated it to the city which moved the house to its current location.

Today the house is used as a research repository for records of the Bay Village Historical Society.

Selden & Nancy Osborn House

by William Krause

29059 Lake Road, c. 1832-1847

The east end (on the left) is likely the original house of Selden and Nancy Osborn. Photo by William Krause
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The eighth in a series of articles to be published as a walking tour of Lake Road by the Bay Village Historical Society in 2025.

Selden was the only son of Reuben and Sarah Osborn. He was born in 1809 in New York and married Ohioan Nancy Ruple in 1833.

Selden first owned land in the 1830s away from Lake Road and tax records are not clear as to when this house was built. His father owned this land until 1842 when 25 acres were transferred to Selden and the tax value went up significantly in 1847. The house has had many additions with the east end of the current house probably the original.

“Osborn Family History” by Julia Osborn Scott states that Selden and Nancy lived here all of their married lives, raising nine children and taking in paying guests from Cleveland for summer vacations. It also says: “Selden was an herb doctor, receiving his training in a doctor’s office. He grew his own herbs. Nancy brewed them for him. He travelled by horseback with … two saddle bags – one for … his medicine.”

Selden was a captain in the Ohio militia. Nancy was a deeply religious woman. Their granddaughter Mabel occupied the house until 1969

Sherman & “Nettie” Osborn house

by William Krause

29560 Lake Rd., c. 1860

The 13th in a series of articles to be published as a walking tour of Lake Road by the Bay Village Historical Society in 2025.

It was Sherman’s grandfather, Reuben Osborn, who originally bought the land from the Connecticut Land Company. Sherman Osborn was the son of Selden Osborn.

According to “Bay Village: A Way of Life,” Reuben later gave each of his five grandchildren some of his land. The grandchildren raised berries, fruits and grapes to sell and on a smaller scale oats, corn and wheat to supply their own needs. They also fished.

Life was difficult, requiring many hours to prepare the fruit for market, which was sold, for the most part, in stalls on Broadway Road in Cleveland. The person selling the fruit had to rise at 1:00 a.m. and drive some 14 miles to market, as most of the business was in full swing by 5 a.m. Then, too they had to get the pickers and take them back as far as Rocky River during peak harvest time.

Sherman married Nettie Phinney and built this Greek Revival gable-wing house in 1860. Their children were Calvin, Albert and Emily, who occupied this house their whole lives. After being widowed Sherman married Myra Yoder in 1884.

Betsey and (Barney) Williams house

by William Krause

29357 Lake Road, c. 1873

The westernmost portion of the current house was constructed in 1873 closer to the street. It was turned sideways and greatly enlarged in 1939 by the famous George Steinbrenner III’s parents. Photo by Will Krause
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The 14th in a series of articles to be published as a walking tour of Lake Road by the Bay Village Historical Society in 2025.

Betsey Osborn, the granddaughter of pioneer Reuben Osborn and daughter of herbalist Seldon Osborn, married Thomas Williams in 1873. They married when Betsey was 33 and Thomas 21.

The house was built on land she inherited, and it remained in her name until her death in 1912 (he died at 43 in 1895). In 1914 Henry Steinbrenner Sr. and Sophia Steinbrenner purchased the Williams house and farm which extended from Lake Erie to the Interurban tracks.

In 1938 Henry Steinbrenner Jr. purchased the property from his mother’s estate. The property was George Steinbrenner III’s childhood home. George is most famous for his long ownership of the New York Yankees baseball team.

George continued to live in Bay Village until 1975 when he relocated to Tampa, Florida. His parents sold this property in 1964 and relocated to Westlake.

The house had several owners before it was purchased by the current owners in 1985. Originally the house was closer to the street. The westernmost portion of the current house was moved back on the lot and re-oriented west to east and greatly enlarged by the Steinbrenners.

Reuben Osborn

Frame #24: Notable Bay Village Residents

William Sadler

William Sadler
b. 23 Sept. 1791, Laurel Hill, Pennsylvania
d. 23 Mar. 1875, Dover Township, Ohio
William Sadler was the son of Christopher Saddler and Sophia Oritz. In the War of 1812 he was a corporal under Captain Harris and participated in the Battle of Lake Erie as a sharpshooter. During the war he traveled through Dover Township and decided to settle there, purchasing Lots #92 and #98 along the Lake Erie shoreline. He arrived in Dover with his father in 1814 where the two prepared a home for William’s family by clearing the land and building a log cabin. In 1815, he traveled back to New York to bring his wife, Elizabeth Tryon and their daughter Sophia to Dover.
William and Elizabeth founded the Dover Lake Shore Methodist Episcopal Church in North Dover Township (today, Bay Village) in June 1827. The church met in their log cabin until William and Elizabeth deeded part of their land to the building of a frame church, providing materials and raising funds as well. William passed away at 84 years old and is buried in Lakeside Cemetery.

Henry Foote

Henry Foote
Frame #24, far right
b. 21 Apr. 1844, Dover Township, Ohio
d. 12 Mar. 1919, Village of Bay, Ohio
Henry Foote was the son of Ransom Foote (son of David Foote) and Catharine Porter Foote (daughter of Asahel Porter). David Foote was an early settler of Bay Village. Around 1815, he bought Lot #97 in Dover Township where he built a log cabin and raised his family.  Asahel Porter, Catharine’s father, arrived in Dover the same afternoon as the Cahoons.
Henry Foote, along with his siblings, helped farm the original Foote homestead. Eventually, Henry took over the remaining portion of the farm after part of it was sold. He raised mainly fruits and berries on his farm and also worked as a land agent for the Lake Shore Electric Interurban. He never married, living with his sister at the old family homestead. He passed away at the age of 75 and is buried in Lakeside Cemetery.

Reuben Osborn

Reuben Osborn
Frame #24, middle left
b. 4 Nov. 1778, New Haven, Connecticut
d. 24 Mar. 1860, Dover Township, Ohio
Reuben Osborn and his brother-in-law Asahel Porter arrived in Dover Township on the same day as Joseph Cahoon on October 10, 1810. He permanently settled in Dover a year later with his wife, Sarah Johnson Osborn. He built the oldest frame house between Cleveland and Lorain in 1815. Reuben donated land for the first schoolhouse in Dover as well as the first cemetery. He passed away at the age of 81 and is buried in the cemetery he helped create: Lakeside Cemetery, Bay Village, Ohio.
This portrait, as well as Sarah Osborn’s, are carte de visite portraits. True to the carte de visite form, they were mailed to a member of the Foote family where they were placed in a photo album. Both have a green 3 cent telegraph stamp on the back, dated 10/22/1864.

Sarah Johnson Osborn

Sarah Johnson Osborn
Frame #24, middle right
b. 8 Aug. 1779, Woodbridge, Connecticut
d. 6 Sept. 1858, Dover Township, Ohio
Sarah Johnson was the daughter of Eliphalet and Mary Johnson. She married Reuben Osborn in Bristol, Connecticut. Her sister married Asahel Porter. Asahel’s family along with Sarah’s husband and her brother Leverett Johnson, arrived in Dover Township in 1810. Reuben returned for her and waited for spring to settle in Dover permanently as a family in 1811. Her brother, Leverett, married Abigail Cahoon in the Cahoon log house in 1814. He later became the Justice of the Peace and served in the State Legislature.
Sarah and Reuben had three children together, but their only son, Selden, was the only child to survive to adulthood. He had a son named Reuben who would become the first mayor of Bay Village after it seceded from Dover. Sarah passed away at the age of 79 and is buried in Lakeside Cemetery, Bay Village, Ohio.

A Recipe for Every Need: Home Cookbooks of the 1800s

 The Bay Village Historical Society has a number of recipe books in its collections. We hope you enjoy the examples you see here, as well as recipes that have been reconfigured to be cooked in a modern kitchen by North Coast Narrative’s Angie George.

The most important recipe book in our collections comes from Selden Osborn (b. 1809, d. 1867). Selden was the only son of Bay pioneers Reuben and Sarah Osborn. Selden was an herb doctor. He grew his own herbs and his wife, Nancy, brewed them for him to make medicines. The book also contains food recipes, family genealogy and financial dealings, among other notes.

In the introduction to his book, Selden writes: “Selden Osborn’s Recipe Book Dover, Wishing well for myself family & the world & believing that I understand some things that will be of use to be remembered I therefore reduce them to writing as I shall never think of Practicing medicine & shall therefore be liable to forget things that are valuable has induced me to write this Book -Selden Osborn”

Selden Osborn's recipe for ague pills, 2011.B.01.037. Ague was a term used by people in the 1800s to describe a sometimes chronic cycle of fever and chills. Quinine pills were introduced in the 1820s and could reliably provide relief, albeit with some adverse effects.

Selden Osborn’s recipe for ague pills, 2011.B.01.037. Ague was a term used by people in the 1800s to describe a sometimes chronic cycle of fever and chills. Quinine pills were introduced in the 1820s and could reliably provide relief, albeit with some adverse effects.

Rusk recipes, 2010.B.002. Recipes for Rusk. Rusk was a termed used to describe small pieces of bread hardened by rebaking and used as crackers, biscuits or dry cakes.

Rusk recipes, 2010.B.002. Rusk was a term used to describe small pieces of bread hardened by rebaking and used as crackers, biscuits or dry cakes.

Another book in our collections with recipes from the 1800s is one that was once on display at the Dover Sesquicentennial in 1961.  The book is filled with recipes and how-tos, both handwritten and in pasted newspaper clippings. It contains instructions on things like preserving cider, whitening your teeth with borax and chalk, brewing grafting wax for plants, and killing bed bugs with quicksilver, as well as for cooking food.

The recipes at the end of this post were collected by Bay Village Historical Society Board Member Cynthia Schuster Eakin from historical cooking expert, Angie George, of the North Coast Narrative. Eakin’s article, Angie George of North Coast Narrative brings history to life, covers cooking in 1800s America and appeared in the October 2022 issue of the publication Currents. It was inspired by a presentation of the topic to our members by George, last fall 2022.

If you would like to find out more about membership in the Bay Village Historical Society contact us at (440) 871-7338 or email: info@bayhistorical.com. You may also sign up via our website on the Support Us Page. Please note that the Rose Hill Museum and Osborn Learning Center buildings are currently closed to the general public until April 2023.

Macaroni Pipes with Cheese (The American Frugal Housewife, Lydia Maria Child, 1832)

Original recipe:
Put a piece of butter, half a pound of macaroni pipes, an onion stuck with two cloves and a little salt into boiling water. Boil them for three quarters of an hour, and then, if the macaroni is flexible, take it out and drain it well. Put it into another saucepan with two ounces of butter, three of grated farmers or parmesan cheese, a little pepper and grated nutmeg. Toss up the whole together, adding two or three spoonfuls of cream. When done, put it on a dish and serve it very hot.

Updated recipe:
Use eight ounces of macaroni, one small onion, two cloves, 1 tsp. salt, four tbsp. butter, 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese, ¼ tsp. pepper, one tsp. ground nutmeg and three tbsp. cream or milk.
Boil macaroni until tender in water with a small peeled onion with two cloves stuck into it and one tbsp. butter. Drain macaroni and add remaining three tbsp. butter, cheese, pepper, nutmeg and cream. Stir until well mixed. Pour into a serving dish and serve hot.

Cider Cake (Kentucky Housewife, Lettice Bryan, 1839)

Original recipe:
Beat together six ounces of butter, eight ounces of sugar and two powdered nutmegs. Add six beaten eggs, a pint of sweet cider and enough flour to make it a thick batter. Beat it very well. Put it into a buttered pan and bake it in a moderate oven.

Modern update:
¾ cup butter at room temperature, one cup sugar, two tsp. ground nutmeg, four well-beaten eggs, 1 ½ cups cider at room temperature, and three cups of flour.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs about 10 to 15 minutes as they provide the leavening for the cake. Add the cider and nutmeg to the butter and sugar mixture. Make sure the cider isn’t cold or the butter will seize. Fold in the beaten eggs. Slowly add the flour and stir to make the batter. You may need more flour if the batter is too runny. Pour the batter into a greased cake pan and bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes until done.

Sugar Gingerbread Cakes (200 Receipts on the Art of Cookery, Chardon, Ohio, 1844)

Original recipe:
A pound of flour, eight ounces of butter, a spoonful of ginger, a spoonful of rose water, well beat up. Knead it stiff enough to roll out. Cut into circles. Bake on flat pans in a moderate oven until lightly browned on the bottom.

Updated recipe:
Two cups flour, one cup sugar, one cup butter, 1 ½ tsp. rosewater, 1 ½ tsp. ground ginger.
Cream sugar and butter, add the rosewater and mix. Slowly add flour and ginger and mix well. Roll dough out on a floured board to a thickness of ¼ inch. Cut in circles. Place on greased baking sheets in a 350-degree oven and bake 20 to 30 minutes. You may have to chill the dough before rolling it out if it is too sticky.

Bay Village Library, part 1 Dover-by-the-Lake

As Bay Village prepares for the opening of its much-anticipated new library, we at the Bay Village Historical Society would like to share with you some library history from our collections.

The following early history of the library in Bay Village is from an article written by Bay Village Historical Society board member, Cynthia Eakin. It is part 1 of a three-part history that we will be sharing with you for the next few installments of Glimpse of the Past.

If you would like to find out even more about the library or Bay Village history in general, contact us at (440) 871-7338 or email us: info@bayhistorical.com.

We hope to see you at the Bay Village Branch of Cuyahoga County Public Library during their Grand Opening, Saturday, April 30 from 2-5pm in the new location at 27400 Wolf Road.

History of the Bay Village Library—Part 1, by Cynthia Eakin

Cahoon Will established the first library in Bay Village

The first settler in Bay Village was Joseph Cahoon, whose youngest granddaughter, Ida Maria Cahoon, left the family estate to the city for a library.

The Cahoon family settled along the Indian trail, now Lake Road, in 1810. In 1818, their permanent home, called Rose Hill, was built where it now stands. The third son of Joseph Cahoon married Margaret Van Allen, and their 11 children were all successful, prominent citizens. Three of their daughters, Lydia, Laura and Margaret were teachers in the Cleveland school system, and a fourth daughter, Ida, was a writer of prominence in the field of poetry. So, it was natural for a family interested in education to foster learning by establishing a library.

The library was made possible through the will of Ida Maria Cahoon. In her will, she asked that the name be, “Dover-by-the-Lake Library,” should another library ever by organized in what was then Dover Township.

The Cahoon estate consisted of 114 acres, the ancestral home of Rose Hill and the barn, left in trust to Mayor Walter Wright, city council, and their successors. The will stipulated that Rose Hill was to be used for a library and museum, and the surrounding land was to be used as a park. Item 25 of the will states, “I hereby direct and request that steps be taken by said Mayor and Council of the Village of Bay to enlist the attention of Mr. Andrew Carnegie, and solicit his help and assistance in establishing and maintaining said library. I hereby give and bequeath to the Library of Dover-by-the-Lake herein intended to be created, all of my books, pictures and I request that the family portraits and best pictures be placed on the walls of the Cahoon homestead, and be forever maintained therein.”

2022.P.08.11.07 Dover-by-the-Lake Library located at Rose Hill, May 25, 1959

A committee of 12 members was appointed on Feb. 2, 1920 to organize and develop a program for a public library. This committee met formally on Dec. 10, 1920 with their recommendations. On Mar. 18, 1921, Mrs. Emma Paul Pope and Miss Olive P. Bailey were appointed associate librarians. They planned and organized the library and opened it to the public on May 24, 1921. There were 80 people present, which was a sizable crowd in a village of 750 people.

Ida Cahoon’s will established two trust funds known as the “Library of Dover-by-the-Lake Fund,” to buy books, maintain, support and care for the library. This fund, plus fines and a small sum from the village general fund, financed the library from its beginning until 1935, when it became eligible for funds from intangible taxes.

R2021.01.10 Julia Osborn Scott

Mrs. Julia Osborn Scott was appointed resident librarian on Oct. 1,1922, and continued until 1946. Scott was the great granddaughter of Reuben Osborn, one of the first settlers of Bay Village. She not only knew her library collection, but she knew the village and all of its inhabitants, and many of their ancestors, if not by personal relationship, then by stories, folk lore and traditions passed down from one generation to the next. From her own family, she learned of the trials and hardships the pioneers endured as they traveled west into Ohio. Since Scott was steeped in the folk lore, manners and customs of the pioneers, she gave this information as freely as she lent a book.

Every newcomer to the village knew the library and Mrs. Scott before knowing anyone else, except perhaps their minister. The library was the center of interest, and there was a personal relationship between the librarian and her patrons that would not exist in larger communities. Scott lived in the upstairs of the library building from her appointment in 1924 until her retirement in 1946. Her quarters were described as being homey and interesting, as there were books everywhere.

Although there was always work to be done, Scott took the time to relate experiences that had no relation to the borrowing of books or reference readings, such as the time a Gypsy family took refuge in the library, since it was the nearest house when their baby became sick. They remained two weeks, but with all of the care they could give, the child died and was given a decent burial in the cemetery by the lake. Then, there was the incident when two men who had imbibed too much, broke into the library on a very cold night and slept on the couches downstairs. Still slightly tipsy in the morning, they proceeded upstairs to wake the librarian to ask her to intercede with the police on their behalf.

During the Depression years and until after WWII, the library hours were irregular and long for one person supervising alone. Because Scott lived in the building, many people would drop in at their convenience. The average number of hours from 1923 to 1934 were not recorded, but from 1934 to 1937, 34 hours a week were scheduled. Between 1937 and 1948, the number increased to 48 hours. There was no regular assistant, yet the services and circulation continued to increase. The library was known first as a Private Trust Library, then it became a municipal library and finally a branch of the Cuyahoga County Library System.

The Mayor and city council leased the dwelling house to the Board of Library trustees, furnished custodial services, water, gas and electricity, and paid the sum of $1,000 a year out of the Dover-by-the-Lake Library fund for use in operation and maintenance of the library. This agreement lasted from 1943 to 1952.

The information in this segment of the series on the history of the Bay Village Library was gathered from, “History of the Dover-by-the-Lake Library of Bay Village, Ohio” by Ruth R. Lephart, submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Library Science, School of Library Science, Western Reserve University, June, 1954.

2022.P.FIC.05.2 Lake Erie Junior Museum event (now Lake Erie Nature & Science Center) inside the library at Rose Hill, circa the late 1940s.

Sherman Osborn House

29560 Lake Road – 1853. Reuben Osborn bought his land from the Connecticut Land Company for one dollar an acre. Reuben gave his grandchildren Sherman, Reuben, Samuel, David and Betsey each a parcel of this property for a farm.

The grandchildren raised berries, fruits and grapes and, on a smaller scale, raised oats, corn and wheat to supply their own needs. They also fished. Life was difficult, requiring many hours preparing the fruit for market, which was sold, for the most part, in stalls on Broadway Road in Cleveland.

The person selling the fruit had to rise at 1 a.m. and drive some 14 miles to market, as most of the business was in full swing by 5 a.m. Then, too, they had to get the pickers and take them back as far as Rocky River during the time when the harvest was at its best.

Sherman Osborn farmed at 29560 Lake Road and married Nettie Phinney. His children were Calvin, Albert and Emily. His second wife was Myra Yoder.